COVID-related shutdowns and slowdowns at meatpacking plants pushed beef exports for May below last year’s levels and pork exports to their lowest level since October, according to data collected by the United States Meat Export Federation (USMEF).
As the spread of COVID-19 in April slowed meat processing facilities and important Latin American trading partners lost purchasing power, U.S. beef exports fell below last year's totals and pork exports grew at a slower rate than in the first quarter.
The U.S. exported record amounts of pork and posted very strong numbers for beef sales around the globe in March, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, according to new USDA data compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation.
USDA reports released Thursday show China has purchased another 1,400 metric tons of U.S. beef and 272,000 tons of U.S. soybeans, demonstrating importers are successfully getting exemptions to the country’s tariffs.
Expectations for U.S. beef exports to China this year are being tempered by the COVID-19 pandemic, but shipments have already begun and they’re expected to continue strong despite the spread of the virus.
Chinese importers purchased 1,500 metric tons of U.S. beef earlier this month, evidence that the “phase one” trade deal is already resulting in new export opportunities for the U.S., according to new data from USDA.