A promising export market for beef in 2021

An industry analyst says the trade outlook for the beef industry is positive for 2021.

Kevin Good with CattleFax projects US beef exports to be up 5 percent this year while imports of foreign beef are expected to decline 5 percent.  “That’s a 10 percent swing,” he says.  “What’s a 10 percent swing on a 3 billion pound market?  That’s basically 300 million pounds.  We thought production was going to be up 500 million.  The balance of trade is going to eat up more than half of that, isn’t it?”

He says strong demand for US beef in places like Japan and South Korea is expected to continue.  But, he says, with increased production, it means demand for US beef in places like China also needs to grow.  “It was 120 million pounds last year,” he says.  “But, in November/December both of those months they averaged 25 million pounds.  You do that over a 12-month period. That’s a 300-million-pound market.  And very well could be larger than that as we go over the next couple of years.”

Good says with the current supply and demand picture, he does anticipate higher prices for all classes of cattle for most of the year.

Good made his remarks during the recent Cattle Industry Convention Winter Reboot.

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