US - Imported lean beef prices in the US import market rose slightly last week, led largely by Australian exporters looking to offset some of the increase in cattle prices, according to the weekly importer survey conducted for MLA by the Steiner Consulting Group.
MLA said that this comes after declines in prices most weeks since the end of November. This week the imported 90CL cow beef indicator rose 2.5US¢, to 246US¢/lb CIF (up 18A¢/kg, to 639.4A¢/kg FAS).
Also contributing to the higher prices in the market is the fact that imported lean beef is still trading at a significant discount to domestic product.
The weekly Steiner report notes that in percentage terms, the difference is not unusual compared to the past, but in absolute terms, the difference is significant (over 50US¢/lb this week).
New Zealand beef imports into the US have continued at a strong pace early in 2015, with the large increases in weekly slaughter still being maintained since their original jump in late November/early December.
This has had a small impact on the potential for imported beef prices to keep rising, and the increasing dairy herd of the past few years is likely to keep cow and bull stocks relatively high for potential manufacturing beef production.
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