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International Meat Review - 4 March 2010

12 March 2010

On February 18, the USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) and the USDA Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS)published the quarterly Outlook for US Agricultural Trade, according to the USDA International Meat Review.

North America

According the report, exports of U.S. agricultural products during fiscal year (FY) 2010 are expected to total $100.0 billion, which is up from the November estimate of $98.0 billion. Also, this is 3.5 percent higher than 2009. During 2010, exports of livestock products are predicted to reach $13.1 billion, up from the November forecast of $12.8 billion. Additionally, this was up 12.3 over 2009. Exports of beef and veal during 2010 are forecast at 700,000 MT, up from the prior forecast of 600,000 MT due to global economic recovery increasing demand, particularly in the key markets of Japan and South Korea. The value of beef and veal exports during 2010 is expected to total $3.0 billion, up from the November estimate of $2.8 billion. U.S. pork exports during 2010 are projected to total 1.5 MMT, which is unchanged from the previous forecast. The value of pork exports is expected to total $4.2 billion, up from the previous estimate of $4.0 billion because of higher live hog prices. Also, strong demand in major U.S. pork export markets in North America and Asia is expected to continue. Meanwhile, U.S. imports of agricultural products during FY 2010 are forecast at $77.5 billion, unchanged from the November forecast. This is 5.6 percent higher than 2009. The value of livestock, dairy and poultry imports during 2010 is expected to equal $11.3 billion, the same as the November forecast. This is 5.7 percent higher than 2009. During 2010, imports of livestock and meats are predicted at $8.0 billion, which is unchanged from the November forecast. This is up 5.1 percent over 2009. Imports of cattle and calves during 2010 are forecast at 2.1 million head, unchanged from the prior forecast. The value of imports of cattle and calves is expected to total $1.5 billion, also unchanged from the previous forecast. During 2010, swine imports are forecast at 5.7 million head, unchanged from November. The value of swine imports is forecast to total $300 million, unchanged from November. Fresh beef and veal imports during 2010 are predicted to equal 900,000 MT, unchanged from the previous forecast. The value is forecast at $3.0 billion, the same as the November estimate. During 2010, fresh pork imports are expected to total 400,000 MT, unchanged from the prior estimate. The value is forecast at $1.0 billion, unchanged from the November forecast. To view the detailed report, including a world outlook, go to the ERS website at http://www.ers.usda.gov/.

On February 19, the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released its monthly Cattle on Feed report. According to the numbers, cattle and calves on feed for the U.S. slaughter market for feedlots with a capacity of 1,000 or more head on February 1, 2010 equaled 10.99 million head. This was 2.6 percent less than one year ago and was 8.2 percent less than two years ago. During January, 1.83 million head of cattle were placed on feed, which was down 1.8 percent from one year ago but was up 2.1 percent over two years ago. More specifically, placements of feeder cattle weighing less than 600 pounds equaled 400,000 head, which was 5.3 percent higher than last year. Placements weighing 600 to 699 pounds were down 11.9 percent from a year ago, amounting to 445,000 head. Placements weighing 700 to 799 pounds totaled 560,000 head, 1.3 percent more than last year. Finally, placements of feeder cattle weighing more than 800 pounds equaled 420,000 head, unchanged from a year ago. Meanwhile, during January, fed cattle marketings rose 2.1 percent over one year ago to 1.77 million head. However, this was down 4.3 percent from two years ago. Additionally, according to USDA NASS, cattle and calves on feed in feedlots with a capacity of 1,000 or more head represented 80.7 percent of all cattle and calves on feed in the U.S. on January 1, 2010, which was down from 81.1 percent in 2009. Marketings of fed cattle for feedlots with a capacity of 1,000 or more head during 2009 represented 84.7 percent of all cattle marketed from feedlots in the U.S., which was unchanged from 2008. The entire report, which also includes 2009 monthly cattle on feed estimates and the number of feedlots, inventory and annual marketings by size group for 2008 and 2009, is available on the NASS website at http://www.nass.usda.gov/.

According to CanFax, during 2009 Canada’s beef imports increased 9.0 percent over 2008, amounting to 183,500 MT. All of the increase came from countries outside of North America, non-NAFTA. These imports were up 43.0 percent during 2009, reaching 59,000 MT. Imports from Uruguay climbed 146.0 percent over the previous year. Beef imports from New Zealand were 37.0 percent higher, while imports from Australia were up 28.0 percent. On the other hand, Canada’s beef imports from the U.S. declined 2.0 percent from 2008 to 125,000 MT. Canada’s beef imports are expected to increase during 2010.

Statistics Canada recently released Canada’s Cattle Statistics. According to the data, on January 1, 2010, Canada’s total cattle inventory equaled 13.02 million head. This was 1.3 percent lower than one year ago and was 6.3 percent lower than two years ago. Additionally, this was a 15 year low due to such factors as market uncertainty and rising input costs. The province of Alberta had the greatest number of cattle with 5.15 million head, which accounted for 39.6 percent of the total. The inventory in Alberta was down 4.3 percent from a year ago. As of January 1, Canada’s beef cow inventory totaled 4.47 million head, which was 3.8 percent less than one year ago and was 10.3 percent less than two years ago. Also, this was the smallest beef cow inventory since 2000. The number of beef replacement heifers fell 3.8 percent from one year ago and 13.2 percent from two years ago, totaling 516,000 head, indicating a lack of heifer retention. Slaughter heifers equaled 900,000 head. Although this was up 9.1 percent over one year ago, it was down 8.5 percent from two years ago. The number of steers, over one year of age, equaled 1.14 million head. This was 7.9 percent higher than one year ago and was 3.5 percent higher than two years ago. The number of calves under one year of age totaled 4.32 million head, which was down 2.6 percent from one year ago and was down 4.7 percent from two years ago. During 2009, Canada exported 273,764 head of feeder cattle to the U.S. This was 49.6 percent less than 2008. The number of slaughter steers and heifers exported to the U.S. during 2009 was 10.7 percent less than 2008, amounting to 608,685 head. During 2009, Canada’s cattle slaughter totaled 3,139,039 head, 3.5 percent below 2008.

In addition, Statistics Canada also published Canada’s quarterly Hog Statistics report. According to the data, on January 1, 2010 Canada’s hog and pig inventory totaled 11.63 million head. This was 1.5 percent lower than the previous quarter and was 4.5 percent lower than a year ago. Also, this was the lowest inventory in 12 years. The largest concentration of hogs was located in Quebec with 3.80 million head, which made up 32.7 percent of the total inventory. Quebec’s inventory was down 2.6 percent from a year ago. Additionally, hog numbers declined from a year ago in all provinces. In Eastern Canada, the hog inventory totaled 6.79 million head, which was 2.8 percent lower than the previous quarter and was 5.2 percent lower than a year ago. In Western Canada, the hog inventory totaled 4.84 million head, which was a little more than the previous quarter but was 3.6 percent less than a year ago. On January 1, Canada’s total breeding stock equaled 1.34 million head, which was down 1.1 percent from the previous quarter and was down 4.3 percent from a year ago. Sows and bred gilts numbered 1.31 million head, 1.1 percent lower than the previous quarter and 4.3 percent lower than a year ago. This was the lowest level since 2000. The pig inventory was 1.6 percent less than the previous quarter and was 4.5 percent less than a year ago, amounting to 10.30 million head. During the final quarter of 2009, 724,600 head of sows were farrowed. This was down 7.9 percent from a year ago and accounted for 54.3 percent of the total breeding herd. The number of pigs born during the fourth quarter of 2009 totaled 7.80 million head, 7.7 percent lower than a year ago. During 2009, Canada exported 5,135,841 head of feeder pigs to the U.S. This was 28.1 percent less than 2008. Slaughter hog exports to the U.S. during 2009 were down 67.2 percent from 2008, amounting to 550,998 head. Canada’s hog slaughter during 2009 equaled 20,800,440 head, which was nearly unchanged from 2008.

Statistics Canada also released its semi-annual Sheep Statistics report. According to the numbers, Canada’s sheep and lamb inventory on January 1, 2010 totaled 806,600 head. This was a little lower than one year ago and was 2.3 percent lower than two years ago. The majority of Canada’s sheep herd was located in Quebec with 244,000 head, which comprised 30.3 percent of the total. Inventory in Quebec was unchanged from last year. On January 1, the number of ewes declined 1.0 percent from one year ago to 517,100 head. Also, this was down 2.9 percent from two years ago. Replacement lambs totaled 74,700 head. This was 4.1 percent lower than one year ago and was 8.7 percent lower than two years ago. Market lambs equaled 192,000 head. This was 4.1 percent more than one year ago and was 2.8 percent more than two years ago. During 2009, Canada’s sheep slaughter totaled 162,743 head, which was 5.3 percent less than a year ago. To obtain each of Canada’s inventory reports, visit the Statistics Canada website at http://www.statcan.gc.ca/.

USDA NASS released its semi-annual U.S. and Canadian Cattle and Sheep and U.S. and Canadian Hogs reports on February 17. According to the numbers, as of January 1, 2010, total cattle and calves in the U.S. and Canada equaled 106.72 million head. This was nearly 1.0 percent lower than one year ago and was 2.9 percent lower than two years ago. Cows and heifers that have calved numbered 45.91 million head, which was down 1.6 percent from one year ago and was down 3.7 percent from two years ago. The beef cow inventory fell 1.4 percent from one year ago and 4.2 percent from two years ago to 35.85 million head. The combined calf crop during 2009 equaled 40.93 million head, which was 1.2 percent less than 2008. In the meantime, the total hog and pig inventory for the U.S. and Canada equaled 77.44 million head. This was 2.4 percent lower than one year ago and was 5.5 percent lower than two years ago. The number of hogs kept for breeding declined 3.6 percent from one year ago and 7.2 percent from two years ago to 7.19 million head. Market hogs totaled 70.25 million head, which was down 2.3 percent from one year ago and was down 5.4 percent from two years ago. The combined pig crop equaled 36.01 million head, which was 1.4 percent less than one year ago and was 4.3 percent less than two years ago. Meanwhile, the total sheep and lamb inventory in the U.S. and Canada equaled 6.44 million head. This was 1.8 percent lower than one year ago and was 5.0 percent lower than two years ago. The number of breeding sheep and lambs fell 1.4 percent from one year ago to 4.81 million head. Also, this was 5.2 percent less than two years ago. Market sheep and lambs totaled 1.63 million head, which was down 3.1 percent from one year ago and was down 4.3 percent from two years ago. The combined lamb crop during 2009 totaled 4.52 million head, which was little changed from 2008. The complete reports, which are a joint effort between NASS and Statistics Canada, can be found on the NASS website at http://www.nass.usda.gov/.

On February 22, USDA NASS released its monthly Cold Storage report. According to the report, as of January 31, 2010, beef in U.S. cold storage facilities equaled 432.8 million pounds. This was down 6.4 percent from a year ago but was up 6.4 percent over the five year average. More specifically, boneless beef in cold storage totaled 368.9 million pounds, 5.8 percent lower than a year ago. The volume of beef cuts in cold storage was down 9.9 percent from last year, amounting to 63.9 million pounds. At the end of January, 495.6 million pounds of pork was in U.S. cold storage. This was down 18.3 percent from a year ago but was up 8.6 percent over the five year average. Specifically, hams in cold storage were 15.4 percent less than a year ago, totaling 74.0 million pounds. The volume of pork bellies in storage was 22.5 percent lower than last year, amounting to 53.6 million pounds. Pork loins in storage totaled 35.2 million pounds, 31.4 percent less than a year ago. Pork ribs in cold storage were up 6.5 percent over a year ago, amounting to 93.6 million pounds. The volume of pork trimmings in cold storage fell 34.4 percent from last year to 43.7 million pounds. Meanwhile, veal in U.S. cold storage totaled 8.2 million pounds, 13.7 percent more than a year ago. The volume of lamb and mutton in cold storage was down 29.2 percent from a year ago, totaling 13.8 million pounds. The entire report, including the annual summary, can be found on NASS website at http://www.nass.usda.gov/.

Pacific Rim

Recently, Japan’s Ministry of Finance published Japan’s beef and pork import data for November 2009, as reported by the Agriculture and Livestock Industries Corporation (ALIC). According to the data, during November, Japan imported 34,090 MT of beef. This was down 30.7 percent from the previous month and was down 12.1 percent from November 2008. More specifically, imports of frozen beef equaled 15,998 MT, which was 48.7 percent lower than the previous month and was 26.3 percent lower than November 2008. Fresh, chilled beef imports equaled 18,022 MT, which was unchanged from the previous month but was 6.2 percent higher than November 2008. During November, Japan imported 26,288 MT of beef from Australia. This was 26.5 percent less than the previous month and was 14.3 percent less than November 2008. Year-to-date beef imports from Australia totaled 333,146 MT, which was 1.1 percent higher than a year ago. Australia was Japan’s largest source for beef imports with 75.9 percent of the total. Japan’s beef imports from the U.S. during November fell 36.9 percent from October to 5,185 MT. However, this was up 5.2 percent over November 2008. Total year-to-date beef imports from the U.S equaled 62,778 MT, which was 27.4 percent greater than a year ago. During November, Japan imported 1,550 MT of beef from New Zealand. Although this was 19.0 percent lower than the previous month, it was 1.4 percent more than November 2008. Year-to-date beef imports from New Zealand were down 4.8 percent from a year ago, amounting to 27,482 MT. Overall, Japan’s total year-to-date beef imports equaled 438,869 MT, 4.2 percent above the same period a year ago. Japan’s beef marketings during November equaled 66,993 MT, which was down 17.1 percent from the previous month and was down 9.9 percent from a year ago. Marketings of imported beef totaled 32,802 MT, 20.1 percent less than a year ago. Marketings of domestic beef were 2.7 percent more than a year ago, totaling 34,191 MT. Japan’s beef stocks at the end of November equaled 88,867 MT, which was 1.6 percent higher than the previous month and was 3.7 percent higher than a year ago. Stocks of imported beef were 7.7 percent more than a year ago, amounting to 76,760 MT. Stocks of domestic beef equaled 12,107 MT, 16.1 percent lower than a year ago.

During November, Japan imported 52,305 MT of pork. This was 5.5 percent less than the previous month and was 17.1 percent less than November 2008. Specifically, imports of frozen pork equaled 35,350 MT, which was down 5.7 percent from the previous month and was down 14.4 percent from November 2008. Imports of fresh, chilled pork equaled 16,952 MT, which was down 5.0 percent from the previous month and was down 22.3 percent from November 2008. Japan’s pork imports from the U.S. during November fell 4.9 percent from October and 22.4 percent from November 2008 to 21,501 MT. Total year-to-date pork imports from the U.S. were 13.8 percent less than a year ago, amounting to 265,506 MT. The U.S. was the main provider of pork to Japan with 41.4 percent of the total imports. During November, Japan imported 14,597 MT of pork from Canada. Although this was 11.5 percent lower than the previous month, it was 4.6 percent higher than November 2008. Total year-to-date pork imports from Canada equaled 155,709 MT, which was slightly less than a year ago. During November, Japan’s pork imports from Denmark totaled 7,244 MT. This was up a little over the previous month but was down 35.3 percent from a year ago. Year-to-date pork imports from Denmark were 25.2 percent below a year ago, amounting to 111,045 MT. Overall, Japan’s total year-to-date pork imports equaled 641,081 MT, which was 14.4 percent less than the corresponding period a year ago. During November, Japan’s pork marketings fell 5.2 percent from the previous month and 4.7 percent from a year ago to 138,760 MT. Imported pork marketings totaled 57,769 MT, 16.8 percent less than a year ago. Domestic pork marketings totaled 80,991 MT, 6.3 percent more than a year ago. Japan’s pork stocks at the end of November totaled 170,966 MT. This was down 2.5 percent from the previous month and was down 4.5 percent from a year ago. Imported pork stocks equaled 141,669 MT, 7.7 percent lower than a year ago. Domestic pork stocks were up 15.4 percent over a year ago, amounting to 29,297 MT.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

March 2010

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