The Foreign Agricultural Service of USDA recently released the latest Livestock and Poultry: World Markets and Trade publication.  This provides an opportunity to review meat production, consumption and trade among major countries.  Pork production is the number one meat with 2016 production forecast at 109.3 million metric tons (MMT), 42 percent of global meat production.  Broiler meat ranks second with 2016 production forecast at 89.7 MMT, 34 percent of the global meat total.  Beef production is forecast at 59.0 MMT in 2016, 23 percent of total meat production.  Total meat production in 2016 is forecast to increase slightly year over year with a 1.0 percent increase in beef and a 1.1 percent increase in broiler production offsetting a 0.9 percent decrease in world pork production.  Total meat exports are forecast to increase 3.6 percent with pork exports up 5.7 percent; broiler exports up 4.7 percent; and beef exports up 0.8 percent.

China is by far the largest pork producer and consumer with 2016 production forecast at 53.5 MMT, 49 percent of total global pork production.  The European Union is second (21 percent) with the U.S. third in pork production (10 percent) with Brazil and Russia rounding out the top five pork producing countries. The same countries are the top five pork consuming countries with Russia in fourth place, slightly ahead of Brazil.  The European Union is the largest pork exporting country, slightly ahead of the U.S., followed by Canada, Brazil and China in the top five.  Total pork exports represent 7 percent of total world pork production. Japan is the largest pork importing country, slightly ahead of China in second place and Mexico in third followed by South Korea and the U.S. 

The U.S. at is forecast in 2016 to be the largest broiler producer at 18.8 MMT (21 percent of world total), followed by Brazil (15 percent), China (14 percent), the European Union (12 percent), and India (5 percent). The same five countries are the top broiler consuming nations in the following order: U.S., China, European Union, Brazil and India.  Brazil is the largest broiler exporter, followed by the U.S., the European Union, Thailand and China.  Total exports among major broiler countries represent 12 percent of total production. The five largest broiler importing countries are Japan, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, European Union and Iraq.

In the 2016 forecast, the U.S. is the largest beef producing country at 11.3 MMT (19 percent of the global total), followed by Brazil (16 percent), the European Union (13 percent), China (12 percent) and India (7 percent).  India includes meat from water buffalo (carabeef).  The U.S. is also the largest beef consuming nation, followed by Brazil, the European Union, China and Argentina. For the third consecutive year, India is forecast to be the largest beef exporter in 2016 with Brazil, Australia, the U.S. and New Zealand rounding out the top five beef exporters.  Total beef exports represent 16 percent of total production. The U.S. is the largest beef importer, followed by rapidly growing beef imports in China.  Japan, Russia and South Korea are the remaining top five beef importers.

India has the largest cattle inventory, forecast at 302.6 million head in 2016 followed by Brazil (219.2 million head), China (100.3 million head), the U.S. (92 million head) and the European Union (88.8 million head).