Argentine exports expected to resume

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Tuesday, May 27, 2008

With the partial lifting of the agricultural strike the Argentinean government is expected to recommence export certificates to meatpackers.

Reportedly the Trade Control Trade Agency (ONCCA) stopped authorising exports in an attempt to pressure the industry to withdraw from the strike, which the beef industry was supporting.

According to the Argentinean Regional Meatpacker Federation (FIFRA), around 85% of slaughterhouses ceased operations last week in support of the strike.

The current export situation has resulted in a decision by JBS-Friboi to reduce its operations in Argentina, dismissing 1,500 workers, if the export ban situation persists, and seen other companies, such as Brazilian Minerva, withdraw from investing in the country. JBS-Friboi currently produces beef (such as thermo processed beef and Hilton cuts) for the export market, which it is not able to sell in the local market.

The general poor profitability and mid to long term prospects in the Argentine cattle and beef industry, affected by live cattle price controls, export bans, taxes, and increasing production costs, appear to have triggered a cattle herd liquidation, with a high percentage of females slaughtered so far this year.
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