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Global Exports

Red Meat Exports Still Strong

Strong April for U.S. red meat exports, including best-ever results for beef.

April exports of U.S. beef, pork and lamb were sharply higher than a year ago in both volume and value, according to data released by USDA and compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF). Pork exports set a new volume record, fueled by tremendous demand in Mexico, while beef exports posted the best-ever results for the month of April.

Exports accounted for 14.1% of total beef production in April, up from 13.6% a year ago. For muscle cuts only, the percentage exported was 11.3%, up from 10.6%. For January through April, exports accounted for 13.4% of total production and 10.8% for muscle cuts, each up about half a percentage point from last year. Read more.

In the Cattle Markets

Fed-heifer marketings surge during the last six weeks.

Cattle slaughter surged during the last six weeks with weekly slaughter more than 650,000 head every week since the first of May, except the Memorial Day shortened week. Total cattle slaughter is up about 9% compared to the same period a year ago. Much of the year-over-year increase in slaughter is from heifers.

Fed-heifer slaughter is up about 17% during the last six weeks, using the daily slaughter data and estimating the first two weeks of June. Read more.

World Meat Congress Focuses on Consumer Trends, Production Technology

Experts discuss the future of meat at World Meat Congress.

The 2018 World Meat Congress concluded Friday, June 1, with sessions focused on consumer trends and education, as well as an in-depth look at cutting-edge technologies reshaping meat production around the world. The 22nd World Meat Congress was hosted in Dallas, Texas, May 31 and June 1. Presented by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) and the International Meat Secretariat, the event drew about 700 participants from more than 40 countries.

Friday’s keynote speaker was best-selling author Jeff Fromm, whose books include Marketing to Millennials, Millennials with Kids and Marketing to Gen Z. Fromm is also a partner at Barkley, a company that assists with establishment and enhancement of brands and helps businesses identify emerging consumer trends. Read more.

Beating BRD

Reducing the prevalence of BRD in feedlots will affect the markets, some for the better, some for the worse.

Bovine respiratory disease (BRD) is one of the most common –– and one of the most costly — diseases affecting North American feedlots. The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) reports that more than 21% of cattle are affected by BRD, and previous estimates of the annual economic losses due to death, reduced feed efficiency and treatment cost related to the disease are between $800-$900 million.

A recent study conducted by Dustin Pendell, Kansas State University (K-State) associate professor of agricultural economics and faculty member with the Beef Cattle Institute (BCI), and Kamina Johnson, USDA APHIS, focused on discussions surrounding new technologies and management strategies that could result in lower BRD prevalence. Read more.


Ginette Gottswiller

The Source

New programs soon to be released from Commercial Programs Department.

“Hey poop scoop, you got another one!” yelled my mom. It was a hot day, and you could see the steam rising off those black-and-white cows. I didn’t want to go back in that darn hot barn for another pile. My shovel was still kind of heavy, because I didn’t clean it off very well in the spreader. Why did I always have to scoop the poop?

My parents told me it would build character and that I would thank them one day.

“Fat chance,” I thought to myself.

You know what? They were right. Read more.

Reaching Northeast Channel Influencers

Conferences highlight new ground-beef recipes and value-added shoulder clod and chuck cuts.

The National Beef Checkoff Program sponsored two new channel-influencer conferences this spring, reaching more than 70 channel influencers from the New England and Mid-Atlantic regions through beef cooking and cutting demonstrations. The North American Camp Foodservice Director Conference was hosted at Camp Chingachgook in Lake George, N.Y., March 27-29 and the Pennsylvania Association of Meat Processors was hosted at the Penn Stater Conference Center in State College, Pa., May 11-12. Read more.

Beef Production Heats Up

Increased fed-cattle numbers are available because of cow herd expansion.

Beef production is heating up in a big way as the long-awaited fed-cattle numbers have shaken loose. With the late-April, early-May bottleneck of tight supplies behind us, we now see the impressive ability of our nation’s packers to push production to the brink.

The week of June 4 had an estimated 658,000-head U.S. federally inspected cattle harvest and is the second largest this spring, surpassed only by the 667,000-head sum the week of May 14. That number was the largest one-week total since October 2011, although some weeks in 2013 were in the ballpark with figures upward of 650,000. Read more.

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