New data from the meat industry show the importance of exports, with pork shipments hitting a new high 2016 and beef also increasing.
The U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) just finished tabulating meat exports for the past 12 months. The organization’s report comes just as the White House has taken a tough stand on trade deals.
Pork export volume reached a record 2.3 million metric tons in 2016. That’s an 8% year-over-year jump. The value of pork exports increased 7%.
Pork exports account for a quarter of total 2016 pork production.
Beef exports in 2016 increased 11% in volume, totaling 1.2 million metric tons. Value-wise, beef exports are up 1%.
According to USMEF beef exports account for nearly 14% of total U.S. beef production.
“We see international markets growing and we're also doing a good job displacing some of our competition here recently. We see demand with growth and displacement — two factors which have helped U.S. beef exports to grow as well as they have in 2016,” says Phil Seng, president and CEO of USMEF.
Seng adds pork shipments to Mexico set a volume record for the fifth straight year. Mexico took in 730,000 metric tons of pork last year.