Meat exports bright spot in weekly sales report

U.S. meat export sales were up during the week ending September 14th. The USDA says beef and pork both recovered from the previous week’s drops, with Japan and South Korea topping the list for beef and Mexico buying nearly half of the weekly total for pork. Grain and oilseed export sales were generally bearish, with improvements for corn and cotton against declines in soybeans, soybean products, sorghum, wheat, and rice. Export trade is driven by several factors, including currency movement, price floors set by some countries, and seasonal shifts in supply and demand. The USDA’s next set of supply and demand estimates is out October 12th.

Physical shipments of corn, soybeans, and wheat were less than what’s needed to meet projections for the current marketing year. The 2023/24 marketing year started June 1st for wheat, August 1st for cotton and rice, and September 1st for beans, corn, and sorghum, while 2022/23 got underway October 1st, 2022 for soybean products. The marketing year for beef and pork is the calendar year.

Wheat came out at 307,700 tons (11.3 million bushels), down 30% from the week ending September 7th and 20% from the four-week average. The Philippines purchased 73,500 tons and South Korea bought 54,200 tons. Early in the second quarter of the 2023/24 marketing year, wheat exports are 316.8 million bushels, compared to 382.4 million in 2022/23. Sales of 14,000 tons (500,000 bushels) for 2024/24 delivery were to Peru.

Corn was reported at 566,900 tons (22.3 million bushels). Japan picked up 197,300 tons and Mexico purchased 131,700 tons. Just a couple of weeks into the new marketing year, corn exports are 461.7 million bushels, compared to 491.5 million this time last year.

Sorghum had a net reduction of 700 tons. The sole listed transaction was a cancelation on 7,000 tons by China. Sorghum exports are 78.6 million bushels, compared to 9.4 million a year ago.

Rice sales of 65,800 tons were 2% lower than the previous week, but 24% higher than the four-week average. Mexico bought 28,100 tons and El Salvador picked up 12,000 tons. Rice exports are 721,700 tons, compared to 452,600 last year.

Soybeans were pegged at 434,100 tons (16 million bushels). China purchased 208,600 tons and Japan bought 74,800 tons. So far, this marketing year, soybean exports are 627.5 million bushels, compared to 945.3 million a year ago.

Soybean meal came out at 12,700 tons, a big drop from the week before and 78% below the four-week average. Guatemala picked up 13,500 tons and the Philippines purchased 6,800 tons. Nearing the end of the 2022/23 marketing year, soybean meal exports are 12,906,100 tons, compared to 12,014,500 late in 2021/22. Sales of 439,100 tons for 2023/24 delivery were mainly to the Philippines (277,300 tons) and Mexico (54,700 tons), while unknown destinations canceled on 105,000 tons.

Soybean oil was reported at 700 tons, a significant decrease from both the prior week and the four-week average. The lone buyer was Canada. Cumulative soybean oil exports are 127,400 tons, compared to 702,900 last year.

Upland cotton was pegged at 105,800 bales, an increase of 57% on the week and 67% from the four-week average. Vietnam bought 44,600 bales and China picked up 25,900 bales. 2023/24 upland cotton exports are 5,485,100 bales, compared to 7,989,200 in 2022/23. Sales of 5,100 bales for 2024/25 delivery were to Pakistan (2,600 bales) and Mexico (2,500 bales).

Net beef sales totaled 17,300 tons, up sharply from the previous week and 15% from the four-week average. The reported purchasers were Japan (3,700 tons), South Korea (3,100 tons), China (2,500 tons), Mexico (1,500 tons), and Canada (700 tons), with cancelations by Italy (100 tons) and the United Arab Emirates (100 tons). Shipments of 15,200 tons were 15% above the week before and 2% higher than the four-week average, primarily to South Korea (3,900 tons), Japan (3,300 tons), China (2,800 tons), Mexico (1,700 tons), and Taiwan (800 tons). Sales of 500 tons for 2024 delivery were to Japan (400 tons) and Taiwan (100 tons).

Net pork sales totaled 30,200 tons, a gain of 31% from the prior week and 1% from the four-week average. The listed buyers were Mexico (13,500 tons), South Korea (3,600 tons), Canada (3,300 tons), China (2,500 tons), and Japan (2,100 tons), with a cancelation by Nicaragua (200 tons). Shipments of 25,600 tons were an increase of 23% on the week, but a decrease of 5% from the four-week average, mostly to Mexico (9,700 tons), Japan (3,700 tons), China (2,700 tons), South Korea (2,600 tons), and Canada (2,400 tons). Sales of 200 tons for 2024 delivery were to Colombia.

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