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USMEF releases updated red meat export study

Photo courtesy of U.S. Meat Export Federation

An independent study shows that since 2015, indirect exports of corn and soybeans through beef and pork exports has been the fastest-growing category of corn and soybean use.

The U.S. Meat Export Federation recently released an updated version of an independent study aimed at quantifying the value red meat exports provide to U.S. corn and soybean producers. The original study was conducted in 2016 with additional updates also released in 2018 and 2019.

Dave Juday is the senior analyst for World Perspectives, Inc. and was the conductor of the original study. He explains why red meat exports play such an important role in corn and soybean prices.

“The rated growth in corn use since 2015: food, seed, and industrial has grown two percent,” Juday said. “Feed has grown with the livestock and poultry industry six percent. Direct exports are up nine percent, and the indirect exports of corn through red meat are up 28 percent. One in every four bushels of added feed demand was due to beef and pork exports.”

The study shows that in 2019, U.S. pork exports used 2.12 million tons of soybean meal, which is the equivalent of 89.2 million bushels of soybeans. Juday says soybean revenue generated by pork exports totaled $751.7 million.

“The fastest growth in soybean meal use has been in the pork exports,” Juday said. “It’s grown 28 percent. That’s compared to 11 percent for feed and direct exports. Basically, one in every eight tons of added feed demand for soybean meal came from pork exports. Why does the rate of growth matter? Because commodities are priced on the margin. Pork exports generally have an outsized impact on price.”

Other findings were that beef and pork exports used about three million tons of distiller’s dried grains with solubles in 2019 at an annual average price of $137 per ton. This generated $411.8 million in revenue for ethanol mills’ co-products.

More information on the updated independent study can be found on the USMEF website.

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