Statistics from USDA and the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) show that June export values for both pork and beef were the highest of the year, marking the second consecutive month of solid year-over-year volume growth.
Pork exports were up 8 percent from a year ago, while export value increased 11 percent to $505.4 million. Exports accounted for 26 percent of total pork production in June and 22 percent for muscle cuts only.
June beef export volume increased 2 percent from a year ago, while export value was $545.4 million. Exports accounted for 13 percent of total beef production in June and 10 percent for muscle cuts only.
Pork exports to China/Hong Kong, Canada, and Central America were well ahead of last year’s pace, and June was also a very strong month for U.S. pork in the Philippines, up 54 percent from a year ago in volume.
“New opportunities for U.S. pork were developed in China/Hong Kong over the past year, and the inroads we made with importers and other key buyers in the region will pay long-term dividends,” said USMEF President and CEO Philip Seng. “But it is important to recognize the shift in market conditions in China, which means growth in other key markets is essential to achieving a successful second half in 2016.”
U.S. beef reclaimed market share in Japan, and June beef exports to Japan were the largest in nearly two years.
“U.S. beef faces a significant tariff rate disadvantage in Japan, and this gap will grow larger unless and until the Trans-Pacific Partnership is ratified,” Seng said. “But rather than dwell on the challenges we face in this market, the U.S. industry needs to capitalize on its opportunities. And USMEF is doing so by educating retail and foodservice buyers about the wide range of U.S. beef cuts that appeal to their customers. We’re pushing well beyond the forequarter cuts traditionally marketed in Japan, and consumers are responding in a very positive way.”
Beef exports to Mexico remained strong in June, and U.S. beef continues to gain market share in South Korea, with June export volume up 2 percent from a year ago.
The strong growth in the Philippines, Indonesia and Vietnam caused June exports to the ASEAN region to increase 113 percent from a year ago, while export value climbed 57 percent to $12.6 million.
Complete first-half export results for U.S. beef, pork and lamb are available here at USMEF’s statistics web page.
Monthly charts for U.S. pork and beef exports are also available online.