China’s appetite for US beef helping bolster demand


China’s appetite for US beef helping bolster demand

Beef and pork demand continue their record-setting pace in 2021.

University of Missouri livestock economist Scott Brown says on the beef side, China continues to be a force.  “We certainly have seen that strength be helpful,” he says.  “I think the Chinese have some appetite for higher quality beef.” In fact, the value of beef exports to three key Asian markets will top $2 billion this year.

But, he tells Brownfield it remains to be seen if that will continue into the new year.  “It looks like Australia is going to be back in the higher levels of beef production in 2022,” he says.  “So do we lose some market share there?  We’ll have to wait and see.” The US Meat Export Federation says beef export value is on pace to hit $10 billion, shattering its annual record.

Brown says pork exports have dropped back, but they are still tracking slightly above 2020’s record pace.  “The positive of the pork story is Mexico,” he says.  “Thank goodness strength continues there.  We hit a new monthly high in Mexico and that certainly helped offset some of the reduction we’re seeing in the China side of the equation.” Pork exports were down 7% in volume and 3.5% in value for October.