Brazil’s exports more beef towards Asia in 2019

Friday, 24 January 2020

By Jennie Tanner

Total beef exports (including offal) increased 13% in 2019 with the vast majority of the increase coming from a 53% increase in exports to China. Brazil has been well placed to capitalise on China’s increased protein requirements due to the loss of its pig herd to ASF. The large increase in exports during 2019 was in spite of the self- imposed ban on exports in early June when an atypical case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) was discovered in Brazil.

While exports have increased to China, Brazil’s exports to Chile and Egypt, two of its largest export destinations in 2018, have fallen. Whilst the loss of China’s pig herd has had benefits for Brazil’s beef exports it has drastically reduced its requirement for soyabeans, a mainstay of Brazil’s agricultural production. This increase in exports to China follows the trend of the last decade or so where Brazil has increased its exports into China from a 0.1% to a 27.3% share of total beef exports.

2019 also saw an increase in exports to Russia after they removed the import restrictions which hampered trade throughout 2018.

The value of Brazil’s beef exports in Real, has also increased, up 26% in 2019, this hasn’t moved up the same as the exports due to the reduction in currency value.

The volume of beef imports into Brazil has increased in 2019 too, up 8% to just under 40,000 tonnes. The value increased 4%, due in part to the currency reduction and partly due to an increase in imports of lower value offal products. The average price of fresh and frozen beef imports actually increased but was outweighed.

Production has increased 3.8% in quarter 3 to 2.2million tonnes. This reflects an increase in carcase weights as the number of animals slaughtered has gone up by a smaller amount (2.1%). Rabobank forecasts that production in Brazil will continue to grow at the same rate as 2019 with strong export demand and increasing domestic demand.

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