Between January and October, New Zealand beef exports totalled 340.4 thousand tonnes, a 3% decline (11 thousand tonnes) on the same period last year, according to the latest data from Statistics New Zealand.
Shipments of beef to Taiwan in the year-to-date fell by 21% (4.8 thousand tonnes) year-on-year, to 17.8 thousand tonnes. New Zealand exports to the US have totalled 161.7 thousand tonnes so far this year, 5% (8.6 thousand tonnes) less than in the same period last year. Although exports to Indonesia are small in quantity, there too has also been a significant year-on-year decline, so far this year totalling 5.6 thousand tonnes, a 43% (4.2 thousand tonnes) less than the same period last year.
Conversely New Zealand exports of beef to China have increased on the year and have totalled 68.2 thousand tonnes so far this year, an increase of 7.5 thousand tonnes. A small part of this increase may be due to China allowing New Zealand to send chilled beef for the first time earlier this year. New Zealand may also have benefitted from five Australian processing plants being banned from shipping to China for a period of time earlier this year.
During October New Zealand beef exports totalled 19.5 thousand tonnes, 1% (200 tonnes) less than the same month last year. Exports to the US increased by 2% (140 tonnes) compared to the same month last year, to stand at 6.7 thousand tonnes. New Zealand shipments of beef to China grew 7% (250 tonnes) year-on-year to stand at 4 thousand tonnes. Exports to Taiwan declined by 16% (185 tonnes) in October compared to the same month last year, standing at 980 tonnes.
There are many countries competing on the global beef market, and with growing volumes, prices could come under pressure. The big exporters, the United States, Australia and Brazil have all been increasing beef exports in recent months and are set to continue to do so.