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There’s still a positive outlook for 2020 red meat exports

The president and CEO of the US Meat Export Federation says global demand for US pork and beef has remained strong in 2020 despite disruptions from the coronavirus pandemic.

Dan Halstrom expects that to continue.  “We will set another record on pork, which means we will have growth over 2019,” he says.  “And honestly I think beef as well has a good chance to see growth over last year.  Last year was the second-largest year on beef exports.”

US pork exports were up 40 percent in March from their previous year’s level and beef exports were up 9 percent.  He tells Brownfield that pace isn’t likely to hold for the rest of the year.  “The second quarter will be down, but the last six months of the year I see us gaining some of that back,” he says. 

Halstrom says there’s still a lot riding on the Phase One trade deal with China.  “I’m using the phrase cautiously optimistic,” he says.  “I think the general feeling is it still could stay on track, at least reasonably close to being on track.  But there are so many moving parts globally and across the US.” He says the global protein shortage due to African swine fever has also benefited both US pork and beef exports.

AUDIO: Dan Halstrom, US Meat Export Federation

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