The impact of Australian wildfires on the cattle industry
January 14, 2020 By Meghan Grebner Filed Under: Beef, Human Interest, Livestock, News
The combination of widespread and prolonged drought and wildfires in Australia is forcing cattle liquidation and pushing total cattle numbers in that country to 30-year lows.
Oklahoma State University ag economist Derrell Peel says their
ability to maintain production and export levels will be compromised for
several years. “The USDA’s latest
projections for global beef markets for major exporting countries forecast for
2020 the US to export more beef than Australia – I think – for the first time
ever,” he says.
He tells Brownfield with the shortage in beef coming out of
Australia, and China becoming the major driver in global beef markets, there
are increasing opportunities for the US beef sector. “If you combine a trade deal that begins to
unwind some of the tariff limitations that we face, combined with the growing
demand for beef in China anyway,” he says.
“And then add to that, the overall protein deficit in China – all of
that suggests tremendous opportunities.”
Peel says Australia is expected to drop to fourth place in
the global beef export race, falling behind Brazil, India, and the US. Additional herd liquidation is likely if conditions do not
AUDIO: Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University
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