Increased beef production foreseen for Portugal


For the last two years, cattle slaughter figures have increased.

Posted on Feb 02 ,14:58

Increased beef production foreseen for Portugal

Portugal aims to increase its beef production and to achieve self-sufficiency but is still a long way to go. The current consumption figures in the market have increased to 20.8 kg per inhabitant in 2020, according to an USDA's FAS report. According to Portuguese official data, total Portuguese cattle slaughter rose 6.5% to 393,305 head to produce 97,700 tonnes of beef in 2020, 5.4% over 2019. The trend continued in 2021, with total slaughter and beef production increasing by 5.8% in the first 10 months of the year.
For years now, dairy farms based in Azore have proved to be inefficient and this may be the province to see an increase in live cattle imports for the following years. "Azorean dairy ranchers with inefficient farms to shift to beef production as a way to restructure the?dairy?sector and to expand Azorean beef production," underlines the FAS report.
FAS noted that Portuguese cattle production may continue growing slightly in 2022 to meet live cattle export demand, mainly to Israel, and increased domestic beef consumption, which was 20.8 kg per inhabitant in 2020, FAS said in its report. However, high prices for feed in 2021 led to decreasing carcass weights.
“Live cattle imports, mainly sourced from Spain, strongly increased in 2020 to meet the growth in cattle production,” the FAS report said. “Similarly, Portuguese live cattle exports increased 30%, mainly due to the 50% growth of cattle exports to Israel, the top Portuguese live cattle market.?However, during the first 10 months of 2021, Portuguese cattle imports declined 80% in line with the cattle sector’s intention to increase production,” the report said. “During the same time, exports continue to rise based on external demand, mainly to Israel.”

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