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Declining US beef production increases imports

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Beef production in the USA is declining and resulting in higher beef imports according to Eoin Kelly, Business Analyst at Bord Bia.

Kelly says that with domestic production declining stronger prices in the US are expected to lead to an increase in feeder cattle imports from Canada and Mexico.

He says tight domestic supplies this year have led to a 12% increase in feeder cattle imports from Canada and a 14% increase from Mexico for the first three quarters of 2014. Feeder cattle imports are expected to reach 2.2 million head by the end of the year, with a further increase expected moving into next year.

According to Kelly the overall forecast for U.S. beef imports in 2014 indicates an increase of around 19% to reach 2.684 billion pounds by the end of the year. He says import demand is expected to remain strong moving into next year, with a further increase in imports forecast.