Record High Returns for New Zealand Meat Exports

NEW ZEALAND - Despite the strong dollar, New Zealand meat exports reached a record high of NZ$5.3 billion in 2013-14, driven by high average values.
calendar icon 15 October 2014
clock icon 2 minute read

The 2013-14 meat export season concluded on 30 September and analysis by Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s (B+LNZ) Economic Service shows it was a positive year for beef, veal, lamb and mutton exports – up NZ$480 million on last season.

B+LNZ chief economist Andrew Burtt says that, for the second season in a row, North Asia was the largest market region for New Zealand meat exports, accounting for 31 per cent of total returns, while the European Union (EU) and North America remained the primary markets for lamb and beef/veal, respectively.

“The amount of lamb exported was down three per cent, reflecting last season’s smaller lamb crop, but total returns were up 9.5 per cent to NZ$2.52 billion. That’s because the average per tonne value of lamb being exported rose 13 per cent – to NZ$8,300, compared to NZ$7,400 in 2012-13.

Mr Burtt said the EU accounted for 48 per cent of lamb returns in the 2013-14 season.

“North Asia was the second largest market destination for New Zealand lamb, at 34 per cent by volume, but average returns were well below those achieved in the EU, reflecting the different product mixes exported to the two regions. For the season just concluded, the average per tonne return for North Asia was NZ$6,000, compared to NZ$10,200 for the EU,” Mr Burtt said.

Ninety-four per cent of lamb exports were further processed, while 22 per cent were chilled product.

The 2013-14 year was New Zealand’s second largest mutton export season, at 93,000 tonnes – up 11 per cent on last season – mainly due to land use switching to dairying.

It was also the second largest beef and veal export season in history – 383,000 tonnes – as a result of high beef production and an increased number of dairy cows processed.

“Total beef and veal returns were up 8.4 per cent to NZ$2.29 billion, while the average value was up 2.1 per cent to NZ$6,000 per tonne. North America accounted for 48 per cent of beef and veal returns, while North Asia accounted for 30 per cent.”

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