Value of red meat exports drop by 14 percent on last year

The value of red meat exports continues to drop.

The value of beef and sheep meat exports in October dropped 14 percent compared to the same month last year, to $615 million, according to new figures from the Meat Industry Association (MIA).

Exports to China, New Zealand’s largest customer for red meat, were down 13 percent to $191m – due to weak consumer demand and because of more Brazilian beef and Australian lamb entering the market.

MIA chief executive Sirma Karapeeva said the amount of sheep meat exported grew by 17 percent to 26,170 tonnes in October but the value decreased by 6 percent due to Australian lamb flooding the market, which has pushed down prices.

“Over the last three months, Australia has exported 30,000 tonnes more sheep meat than it did in the same period last year.

“An increase in Australian production and exports is impacting global prices, after a period of flock rebuilding, Australia is now going through a liquidation phase, which has been exacerbated by dry conditions in parts of the country in recent months.”

The volume of beef exports in October was unchanged from last year, but the value dropped 13 percent, Karapeeva said.

She said some markets were performing better, with exports to Canada up 57 percent to $34m and exports to the UK up 44 percent to $23m.