Australia's beef exports facing competition from Brazil, India as rising beef consumption in emerging markets driving increase in global demand, industry group says; global beef consumption may rise 24% to 64.5 million tonnes by 2020

LOS ANGELES , March 7, 2012 () – According to industry group Meat & Livestock Australia, Australian beef exports will have to compete with Brazilian and Indian beef exports as rising beef consumption in emerging markets drives an increase in global demand, Bloomberg reported March 6.

Scott Hansen, the group’s managing director, said that over the next five years, increases in demand will most likely surpass the global capacity for beef production. In comparison with 2011, global beef consumption may increase 24% to 64.5 million tonnes in 2020.

This year, U.S. exports of beef could rise following a drought that had led farmers to slaughter more animals.

On Feb. 24, Tyson Foods Inc. Chief Executive Officer Donnie Smith predicted that for a period that will encompass at least the next 5-7 years, the global protein demand could potentially increase 1.8%-2% annually.

In January, global food costs increased 1.9%—an 11-month high—fuelled primarily by growing populations and rising incomes in emerging markets.

This year, Standard & Poor’s GSCI Agriculture Index (SPGSAG) for eight commodities has increased 1.5%.

On March 5, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said that Brazilian beef exports this year could potentially exceed an earlier forecast of 1.375 million tonnes. The USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service predicted that Brazilian exports could total 1.394 million tonnes.

According to the USDA, India will most likely export roughly 1.275 million tonnes of beef and veal this year, making it the third-largest exporter of these products in the world behind Australia and Brazil.

Following Japan’s decision to considering easing restrictions against the importation of U.S. beef, Australia is attempting to increase beef exports to emerging markets. According to a March 5 report by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES), Australian beef exports to Japan could potentially fall by 2.4% during 2012-2013. In the wake of increased competition from Canada and the U.S., sales to South Korea may decrease 2.1%.

In 2004, after Japan imposed restrictions on U.S. beef, imports fell year-over-year from 298,039 tonnes to nearly 0 tonnes

For the year that begins on July 1, ABARES predicted that Australia’s total beef and veal exports could potentially increase 1.6% to 970,000 tonnes.

The primary source of this article is Bloomberg, New York, New York, on March 6, 2012.

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