USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom reports that global demand for U.S. pork and beef has remained very robust in 2020, despite COVID-19 related disruptions in many countries’ restaurant and hospitality sectors. He notes retail meat demand has surged in many markets, along with sales through e-commerce platforms and delivery services.
Halstrom cautions that first quarter export results (summarized here) did not reflect recent interruptions in the U.S. supply chain, and he anticipates some negative impact on April and May exports. But his outlook for 2020 remains positive, due in part to market access gains in Japan and China. The U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement, implemented on Jan. 1, lowered tariff rates for U.S. beef and pork and put U.S. meat products on a level tariff playing field with major competitors. The red meat trade provisions of the U.S.-China Phase One Economic and Trade Agreement took effect in late March, lowering barriers for U.S. pork and significantly expanding access for U.S. beef.
The U.S. Meat Export Federation (www.USMEF.org) is the trade association responsible for developing international markets for the U.S. red meat industry. It is funded by USDA; the beef, pork, lamb, corn and soybean checkoff programs, as well as its members representing nine industry sectors: beef/veal producing & feeding, pork producing & feeding, lamb producing & feeding, packing & processing, purveying & trading, oilseeds producing, feedgrains producing, farm organizations and supply & service organizations. USMEF complies with all equal opportunity, non-discrimination and affirmative action measures applicable to it by contract, government rule or regulation or as otherwise provided by law. USMEF is an equal opportunity employer and provider.