Trade First quarter beef, pork exports below last year’s pace
March beef exports totaled 107,655 t, down 4% year-over-year, while value fell 2% to $678 mill. For the first quarter, exports were down 3% at 307,306 t valued at $1.9 bn. (down 0.8%).
March beef exports were very strong on a per-head basis, with export value per head of fed slaughter averaging $335.81 – up 1% from a year ago and the highest since December. The first quarter average was $309.32/head, down 2% from a year ago. March exports accounted for 13.6% of total US beef production and 11% for muscle cuts only, which was fairly steady with last March. For the first quarter these ratios were 12.9% and 10.2%, down from 13.2% and 10.7%, respectively, a year ago.
Pork exports totaled 211,688 t in March, down 7% from a year ago, valued at $520.7 mill. (down 15%). First quarter exports were 6% below last year’s pace in volume (600,268 t) and down 14% in value ($1.47 bn).
Pork export value averaged $48.55 per head slaughtered in March, down 15% from a year ago. For January through March, export value averaged $46.15 per head, down 16% from the first quarter of 2018. March exports accounted for 25.6% of total US pork production and 22.7% for muscle cuts only – down from 27.5% and 23.5%, respectively in March 2018. First quarter exports accounted for 24.4% of total pork production (down from 26.6%) and 21.3% for muscle cuts (down from 23%).