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Prospects for Mexican Beef Market

21 June 2013
Meat & Livestock Australia

MEXICO - While Mexico is not a top-tier export market for Australian red meat, nor necessarily a large direct competitor into other markets, it does have the ability to impact returns for Australian meat to North American through its influence upon US cattle supplies and production, according to Meat and Livestock Australia.

Probably the most influential sector is the feeder cattle trade from Mexico into the US.

While a lot has been made of the declining US cattle herd in recent years, the availability of young Mexican cattle has helped to offset this somewhat.

MLA said that the large number of cattle moving north from Mexico relieves some price pressure on feedlot buyers and those further along the supply chain.

Over the past four years (2009-2012), the proportion of cattle placements in California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and Oklahoma that were imported from Mexico rose from 9 per cent to 22 per cent - as the supply of suitable US cattle diminished. While this has declined into early 2013, it was still around 16 per cent during March and April.

In terms of the relative importance of beef imports to Mexico, Australia remains very low – despite being the third-largest (behind the US and Canada) supplier of imported beef. In 2012, Mexico imported 604 tonnes of Australian beef, just 0.4 per cent of the annual total.

TheMeatSite News Desk

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