CME: YTD Pork Exports Higher; Beef Exports Lower

US - First today, a correction. In my item on Friday regarding GIPSA’s complaint against JBS Swift, I inadvertently referred to JBS United in one place. JBS United is an Indiana-based feed company that is in no way related to JBS Swift. JBS United has nothing to do with the GIPSA complaint. My apologies for getting my JBS’s mixed up, writes Steve Meyer.
calendar icon 18 October 2010
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US beef exports totaled nearly 200 million pounds carcass weight equivalent in August. Tha number is almost precisely 5 million lower than in July and was 19.6 per cent higher than in August 2009. The monthly shipments bring year-to-date beef exports to 1.468 billion pounds, 17.1 per cent higher than last year through 2009. The industry continues to recover from the December 2003 discovery of BSE but this year’s YTD exports through August are still 15 per cent lower than those of 2003.

Mexico remains the number one destination for US beef but shipments to Mexico remain well below one year ago. Mexico bought 44.9 million pounds of US beef in August, 7.2 per cent less than in August 2009. Year-to-date exports to Mexico are 25.7 per cent lower than in 2009, but that decline is the smallest since February. Japan continues to be the second largest market for US beef with August exports up 21 per cent from last year and year-to-date exports 21 per cent higher as well. Canada remains our number three beef export destination but growth there has been small, up only 7 per cent from last August and 2.3 per cent YTD. The fastest growing market for US beef is Russia, where YTD shipments have grown by over 10-fold. Of course, that huge number is primarily the result of VERY small exports in ‘09.

Pork exports in August totaled 302.2 million pounds carcass weight equivalent, 25 million pounds fewer than last month and 0.8 per cent lower than last year. Year-to-date, pork exports are still 4.5 per cent higher than in 2009. Japan was still the largest customer for US pork but the gap between Japan and Mexico narrowed significantly in August. August shipments to Japan were 0.7 per cent higher than last year. YTD exports to Japan are 1 per cent higher than last year through August. Year-to-date shipments to Mexico are 21.4 per cent larger than last year. Canada is a distant third on the rankings of US pork destinations but August shipments northward were 16 per cent higher than last year and YTD shipments are nearly 12 per cent higher.

Russia and Korea remain troublesome markets for US pork exporters. After Russian shipments increased quickly after resuming back in April and reached just over 25 million in May. But that growth did not last long and shipments to Russia amounted to only 9.2 million pounds in August, 36 per cent below last year. YTD shipments to Russia are 63 per cent lower than in 2009. Exports to Korea have fallen each month since April and are now 15 per cent lower than last year.

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