Beef Quarterly Q2 2017: Market Disruption Changing Trade Flows

The global beef complex has been characterised by a series of market disruptions through Q2. Political upheaval in Brazil, a new trade agreement between the US and China, and proposed bans on slaughter in India: All involve the major bovine-exporting nations of the world and have the potential to cause material shifts in global trade.

For the latest beef quarterlies, please go to Beef Quarterly

Report summary

While US exports continue to perform strongly (and have now reached record levels), reduced supply from Australia and New Zealand, along with potential shocks from Brazil and India, could see the balance in the beef market shift back to a supply-limited market.

Brazil’s meat sector has been rocked by two political events during 1H 2017. In March, the Brazilian federal police investigation into irregularities in meat inspections resulted in most of Brazil’s importing countries placing temporary restrictions on Brazilian meat imports (they have since been lifted). In May, Brazil’s largest beef processor was caught up in political scandal. Brazilian beef exports dropped by around 10% YOY in the first five months of 2017, opening space in the global beef market, and the recent drop in cattle prices may lead to a future reduction in production.

In early June, the Indian federal government released a directive that would ban the sale of cattle, including buffalo, in notified livestock markets for non-agricultural purposes—which would include the sale of cattle for slaughter. As India is one of the largest global bovine exporters, any ban on slaughter would have enormous global impact. At the time of writing, no further information was available as to how many states would conform to the federal government directive, and when.

  • Angus Gidley-Baird

    Senior Analyst - Animal Protein Read more
  • Don Close

    Senior Analyst - Animal Protein Read more
  • Adolfo Fontes

    Senior Analyst - Animal Protein Read more
  • Beyhan de Jong

    Associate Analyst - Animal Protein Read more
  • Chenjun Pan

    Senior Analyst - Animal Protein Read more
  • Justin Sherrard

    Global Strategist - Animal Protein Read more
  • Pablo Sherwell

    Head of RaboResearch Food & Agribusiness - North America Read more
  • Albert Vernooij

    Analyst - Animal Protein Read more


RaboResearch Food & Agribusiness

PO Box 17100 (UC 053) 3500 HG Utrecht, The Netherlands