According to statistics released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF), U.S. pork and beef exports continued to build momentum in October with increases in the double digits for both products.
October pork exports totaled 201,936 metric tons (mt), up 14 percent year-over-year, accounting for 25.5 percent of total pork production in October and 21 percent for muscle cuts only. Export value was $521.1 million, up 16 percent, export volume was 6 percent above last year, and export value was up 3 percent.
October beef export volume was 105,938 mt, up 12 percent from a year ago, accounting for 14 percent of total production in October and 11 percent for muscle cuts only. Export value climbed 10 percent to $559.5 million, export volume was up 9 percent from a year ago, and value was down 3 percent to $5.1 billion. Worth noting was the strength of beef muscle cut exports in October, which reached their largest volume in two years.
“With pork production at a record level and beef production also on the rise, it is imperative that we work to expand global demand and accelerate the volume of product entering the international markets,” said Philip Seng, USMEF president and CEO. “With strong support from USDA, our U.S. industry partners and our international contacts, USMEF has intensified its marketing efforts in key destinations and capitalized on opportunities to regain market share – not only in mainstay markets such as Japan, Mexico and South Korea, but in a wide range of countries. This has laid the groundwork for a strong finish to this year and further growth in 2017.”
Pork exports to countries in the western hemisphere increased in October. Exports to Mexico remained especially strong, increasing 9 percent from a year ago in volume and 6 percent in value. This support has helped strengthen the price of U.S. hams, the highest-volume export item to Mexico.
Beef exports set a new monthly record in Taiwan, where volume was up 90 percent from a year ago and value was up 7 percent. October beef exports to Japan were also strong, with volume up 40 percent and value up 34 percent.