For the first time in history, US beef and pork exports could each surpass the $5 billion mark in 2011 - providing global demand remains strong.
Beef exports through June were 25% higher in volume and 40% higher in value than in the first six months of 2010. First-half pork exports show year-over-year increases of 14% in volume and 19% in value.
There are three strong growth areas for US beef exports - Latin America, the Middle East and Canada. Exports to Canada through June were 23% higher than last year in terms of volume (192.5 Mio. lbs.) and 44% higher in value (463.9 Mio. US$). Exports to Central and South America were 51% higher in volume (28.2 Mio. lbs.) than last year and 71% higher in value (35.2 Mio. US$), led by strong growth in Chile, Peru, Colombia and Guatemala.
Beef exports to the Middle East also continued to post strong growth, with volume (176.8 Mio. lbs.) up 38% from last year and value (153.7 Mio. US$) up more than 50%.
South Korea and Japan have been the biggest drivers of US pork export growth this year. Through June, US pork exports to South Korea reached 271 Mio. lbs. valued at 301.5 Mio. US$. This is a 145 % increase in volume over the first half of last year and nearly triples the value. Coming off a record value year in 2010, pork exports to Japan have increased another 10% in volume (550 Mio. lbs.) and 13% in value (944.2 Mio. US$) in 2011.
Source: US Meat Export Federation