Export Lamb

MLA report confirms Australia as world’s top sheep and goat meat exporter

Sheep Central, October 14, 2019

MLA managing director Jason Strong

AUSTRALIA is the world’s largest sheep and goat meat exporter and exports more than 65 percent of its red meat production, according to a report released last week.

The Australian red meat and livestock industry’s ‘State of the Industry Report 2019’, launched by the Red Meat Advisory Council (RMAC) last week places Australia as the world’s third largest beef exporter behind Brazil and India.

The report, compiled by Meat & Livestock Australia on behalf of the red meat industry, provides an overview of Australia’s red meat and livestock industry, including figures on production, consumption, exports, and the economic significance of the industry.

MLA managing director, Jason Strong, said the report highlighted that while Australia is a relatively small producer of red meat, it plays a big role in global export markets.

“Continued diversification of export destinations has allowed Australia to maximise returns and help mitigate exposure to market and trade risks.

“Australia exported 65pc of beef, 73pc of sheep meat and 90pc of goat meat production in 2018, valued at more than $13.5 billion,” Mr Strong said.

“This makes Australia the world’s largest red meat exporter by value.

“Australia is also a major player in the livestock export trade, exporting 1.1 million cattle and 1.2 million sheep, worth a combined $1.5 billion in 2018,” he said.

“Red meat and livestock exports totalled approximately $15 billion in 2017-18, down 13pc year-on-year, but approximately 59pc above 2012-13 levels.”

RMAC chief executive officer, Anna Campbell, said the report is an important tool for highlighting key flashpoint areas for the attention of industry and policy makers, including market access to the European Union, the rise of alternative proteins and the impact of natural disasters.

“Improving trade access into emerging and currently restricted markets is critical for the ongoing competitiveness and prosperity of the Australian red meat and livestock industry,” Ms Campbell said.

“The industry is operating in an environment where total world meat consumption continues to increase,” she said.

“Over the last two decades, total global consumption has increased by 64pc at an average rate of 2pc per year for sheep meat and 1pc for beef.

“Domestically, Australia is one of the world’s largest per capita consumers of beef and sheep meat,” Ms Campbell said.

“In 2018, we consumed three and five times the global consumption averages for beef and sheep meat respectively.”

Ms Campbell said the report showed that despite ongoing challenging seasonal conditions experienced by the industry, the number of red meat and livestock businesses remained relatively stable at 80,300.

“The number of businesses within the red meat and livestock industry has remained relatively constant over recent years, with a growth of 4.6pc between 2012-13 and 2017-18,” Ms Campbell said.

“The relatively small increase in number of businesses contrasts with larger increases in turnover of 31pc and industry value add of 67pc.”

To read the full report, click here




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