US pork exports stay elevated
While China’s swine herd recovery has caused pork muscle cut exports to moderate in 2021, China’s demand for US pork variety meat remains extremely strong and continues to play a key role in maximizing carcass value. Through August, pork variety meat exports to China/Hong Kong increased 23% to 231,283 tonnes, valued at $558 million (up 29%). With pork variety meat shipments also trending higher to Mexico, Southeast Asia, Central and South America, and Oceania, export value is on a record pace at $848.8 million, up 26% from a year ago and 11% ahead of the peak year of 2017., informs US Meat Export Federation (USMEF).
Pork exports posted another strong month in August, remaining ahead of the record pace established in 2020. Pork exports totaled 225,822 tonnes in August, up 4% from a year ago, and value increased 20% to $633.9 million as record shipments to Mexico and strong growth in several other markets helped offset the expected slowdown in muscle cut exports to China. For January through August, exports were 1.5% above last year at just over 2 million tonnes, while value climbed 10% to $5.62 billion, said USMEF in a press release.
Mexico remains the main market for the US pork industry, with August exports volumes reaching 80,779 tonnes, up 47% from a year ago and narrowly outpacing the previous record set in December 2016. Export value more than doubled to $162.4 million (up 109%). Through August, exports to Mexico were 25% above last year at 543,550 tonnes, with value climbing 56% to $1.1 billion. Exports are on a record pace, with January-August shipments 4% higher in volume and 12% higher in value when compared to 2017, the peak year for pork exports to Mexico.
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