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Agricultural News

International Trade on Pace for Strong Finish for 2014

Thu, 15 Jan 2015 12:28:22 CST

International Trade on Pace for Strong Finish for 2014

New trade data shows the U.S. finished 2014 with strong beef exports for the year. The US Department of Agriculture and US Meat Export Federation has released their November beef export numbers. Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Market Economist Dr. Derrel Peel said November's export levels were lower, imports were up, but overall for the year U.S. beef exports finished the year on pace with the year before.

"Both of those are things you would expect given the high price of beef in the U.S. as well as the decreased production we had in 2014," Peel said.

Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays featured Peel on the Beef Buzz feature. Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to listen to today's Beef Buzz.

One of the important markets for U.S. beef remains to be our neighbor to the north with Canada. It's one of our biggest beef export markets, one of largest sources of beef imports and an important source of cattle imports. Peel said there is a very integrated flow of products between the countries.

"We do both import and export, but of course it is different products in many cases," Peel said. "Preferences are slightly different and so what the market is trying to do with both imports and exports is match up preferences and product mixes in the two countries."

Trade is also integrated with the United States and Canada sharing a very long border from east to west. With the high cost of shipping, Peel said it is much more efficient for both countries to ship products north and south.

Mexico is also another important trading partner for the United States. Peel said Mexico has is a major source of feeder cattle imports into the U.S., for the past 20 years Mexico has been a major beef export market and in the last five years Mexico has emerged as a major source of beef imports into the U.S.

"It's evolved over time, adding more complexities to the trade relationship," Peel said. "But Mexico is much like Canada now and really across the three countries we have a very integrated market situation where we are all trading, both importing and exporting, from each other to maximize value in the market place."

Of course the bone of contention between the United States, Canada and Mexico is the U.S. Country of Origin Labeling law that has been ruled as trade distorting by the World Trade Organization. A final ruling may come before the end of this year.

Click here to read more from Dr. Peel on the evolving role of Canadian and Mexican cattle and beef trade.

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.

Ron Hays Beef Buzzes with Derrell Peel, OSU Livestock Market Economist
right-click to download mp3


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