Australia expects shock waves in top beef destination
The main destination for Australian beef, Japan, is confronted with another set of restrictions in several provinces and that could have a serious impact for exporters, warns MLA’s Regional Manager – Japan and Korea, Scott Walker. Last year, Japan imported 269,000 tonnes of Aussie beef, 6% down from 2019 levels. However, a new set o restrictions applied in Tokyo and the surrounding regions may have a certain impact on demand from foodservice sector.
"The current state of emergency started in January and was supposed to be finished in February. As a result, harsher restrictions have come into play, with restaurants closing at 8 pm, negatively impacting the demand for beef across the foodservice sector. While the trend appears to be improving, there is still pressure on medical facilities in a number of areas, so it’s unclear when the SoE will be lifted. We are certainly seeing more of a need to provide easy-to-cook at home recipes. It's a challenge for a lot of consumers in densely populated areas in particular, as not everyone has extensive cooking facilities. Therefore, we need to ensure our recipes are simple, easy and delicious. Pre-prepared meals are also becoming more popular while quick service restaurants are booming," adviced Mr Walker.
According to his report, in this situation, partnering with e-commerce stores to promote Australian beef seems to have better results than organizing large gatherings in typical bricks and mortar retail stores. For the ast couple of months, MLA had a promotional campaign focused on how to cook beef at home. Over this period, there was a 6% increase in sales that helped to clear out beef inventory in Japan.