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Weekly global protein digest

25 December 2020

Jim Wyckoff Commentary - TheCropSite

US beef net sales of 6,000 MT reported for 2020 were down 40 percent from the previous week, but up noticeably from the prior 4-week average.

US beef export sales slip in latest week

Increases were primarily for Japan (2,000 MT, including decreases of 400 MT), South Korea (1,900 MT, including decreases of 700 MT), Mexico (600 MT, including decreases of 100 MT), Canada (400 MT, including decreases of 100 MT), and Hong Kong (400 MT, including decreases of 400 MT). For 2021, net sales of 7,200 MT were primarily for South Korea (3,100 MT), Hong Kong (2,100 MT), Japan (700 MT), Mexico (500 MT), and Taiwan (300 MT). Exports of 13,500 MT were down 30 percent from the previous week and 27 percent from the prior 4-week average. The destinations were primarily to South Korea (3,700 MT), Japan (3,300 MT), Mexico (1,900 MT), Hong Kong (1,500 MT), and Canada (800 MT).

China data shows another big jump in pork imports in November

The latest round of Chinese customs data showed the country imported 330,000 metric tons of pork in November, up 43.7% from year ago, according to Reuters. Through November 2020, pork imports were at 3.95 million metric tons, according to General Administration of Customs data, more than double the level seen during the same period in 2019, according to Reuters.

China to lower tariffs on 883 commodity imports

China will lower tariffs on 883 commodities, according to Chinese media reports, based on a circular from the Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council. The provision tariffs will be lower than the most-favored nation (MFN) rates and will take effect Jan. 1. They are aimed at improving supply quality, according to the reports. Bilateral trade deals between China with countries including New Zealand, Peru, Costa Rica, Switzerland, Iceland, Australia, South Korea, Chile, Georgia and Pakistan will be affected by the adjustment, according to the People’s Daily. The tariffs rate in these deals will be further lowered. Reuters reported the notice indicated that China will exempt import tariffs on some anti-cancer drugs and raw materials of rare disease drugs, while import duties on artificial heart valves, hearing aids, as well as some raw materials for baby powders would be lowered. The report also said that import duties on parts, raw materials, and industrial equipment used in its new infrastructure and high-technology push would be lowered, along with emission-filtering devices for diesel engine vehicles and on some non-alloyed nickel and the minor metal niobium will be slightly cut in 2021 to encourage more imports. The report also indicated that sliding tariffs on cotton imported via additional quotas would be lowered “marginally,” lowering import costs on cotton. The South China Morning Post reported that some aviation equipment, logs and paper products were among the commodities along with some information technology products, with the latter starting July 1. Another report noted that the lower provisional import tariff rates exclude tariff quota commodities. The People’s Daily report did not cite the U.S. as one of the countries that would be affected by the adjustment in import tariffs.

“Eat Just” one of several startups producing animal protein

The new startup is producing protein not by slaughtering animals or using plant-based ingredients that mimic the taste of meat, but by growing animal cells. Some 60 cell-based meat startups are in process around the world, according to the consultancy Lux Research, and funding for the sector hit $314 million in 2020 — more than 100 times greater than when Dutch pharmacologist Mark Post made the world’s first cell-based hamburger in 2013.

Axios reports at least eight startups are building or operating pilot production plants to try to drive the price of production down. Cultured meat still costs $400 to $2,000 a kilogram to produce versus the current consumer price tag of $4 a pound for conventional ground beef in the United States. One study concluded that because of the energy consumption needed to scale up cultured meat, its carbon footprint could be several times that of conventional chicken, though that assumes companies won’t use cleaner energy sources. Labeling will be key to future consumer acceptance and some in the conventional meat industry have pushed the government to prevent cell-based companies from using the terms “meat” or “poultry.”

Brazil’s beef industry hopes to build on this year’s record shipments

Brazilian beef producers hope to boost beef exports by 6% in 2021, thanks to access to new markets in Asia and North America, according to the industry group Abiec. This year, the group expects beef exports to hit a record 2.02 MMT, valued at $8.53 billion. And Abiec says new agreements to sell fresh beef to Canada, Japan, South Korea and Mexico could lift those shipments to 2.14 MMT in 2021, valued at $8.89 billion. Currently, Brazil only exports processed beef to Canada. China remains Brazil’s biggest customer, accounting for 42.2% of the country’s total exports 11 months into the year, according to Abiec.

US retail dairy report from USDA

Advertised prices for dairy products at major US retail supermarket outlets ending during the period of 12/25/2020 to 12/31/2020 saw conventional butter, in one-pound packages, was the most advertised dairy item this week, followed by conventional 48 to 64-ounce containers of ice cream and 8-ounce packages of conventional cream cheese. The national weighted average price for conventional one-pound butter is $2.98, up 14 cents from last week.

The weighted average advertised price for conventional 8-ounce block cheese is $2.29, down 5 cents from last week. The weighted average advertised price for conventional 8-ounce cheese shreds is $2.44, up 20 cents from last week. The most advertised cheese item for the week was conventional 8-ounce packages of cheese shreds.

The national weighted average price for conventional Greek yogurt in 4 to 6-ounce containers is $1.00. The weighted average price for conventional 4 to 6-ounce yogurt is $0.52, up 6 cents from last week. When compared to the weighted average price for organic 4 to 6-ounce yogurt, $1.50, the resulting organic premium is $.98.

The national weighted average price for conventional half gallon milk is $.99. The national weighted average advertised price for organic half gallons is $4.44, resulting in an organic premium of $3.45. Organic half gallon milk was the most advertised organic dairy item. The national weighted average price for conventional gallon milk is $3.62, compared to $5.99 for organic gallons, resulting in an organic premium of $2.37.

USDA’s weekly international dairy report

WESTERN EUROPE OVERVIEW: A relaxed holiday mood prevails in the Western European dairy industry. Many calls go unanswered. There are fewer Skype calls. The pace is slower. EU milk production January – October 2020 increased 1.7 percent from January – October 2019. Negotiations between the EU and New Zealand concerning a free trade agreement recently completed the nineth round. The next round is expected to occur during the first quarter of 2021. A topic to be addressed is dairy provisions. European sources say that New Zealand believes that the dairy provisions leave it at a trade disadvantage to other EU treaty partners such as Canada and Chile.

EASTERN EUROPEAN OVERVIEW: Polish milk production January – October 2020 increased 2.5 percent from January – October 2019 according to CLAL data made available to USDA. Comparing dairy product production January – October this year against that period last year, butter is +8.2 percent; cheese is +3.7 percent; SMP is +6.4 percent; but WMP is -12.3 percent.

OCEANIA OVERVIEW: Australia: July – October 2020 milk production in Australia, October being the fourth month of the new season, increased 1.6 percent from July – October 2019, according to Dairy Australia. This milk season began with the benefit of warm and wet weather, which spurred good pasture growth. Dairy producers in turn, have benefitted from eased hay and grain prices. Production conditions remain generally good. However, even with season to date milk production through October being positive, and July, August and September YOY production percentage changes each being positive, October YOY declined -0.3 percent. Observers in Australia cite factors such as a smaller national herd, fewer dairy farms, and less hired labor availability. With seasonal production now moving down, monthly production outcomes become more a matter of concern. The decent early season gains provide a cushion. The October YOU production decline is slight. New Zealand: Dairy producers in New Zealand received welcome December news last week in advance of the holiday season. A large New Zealand dairy cooperative increased the projected low end of the seasonal milk pay price. The new projected price is NZ$6.70 – NZ$7.30 per kilogram of milk solids. The previous projection had a low range price of NZ$6.30. Officials attribute the increase to early season strength in exports, not only to China, but Asia more widely. Whole milk powder exports, in particular, are in good demand. The export strength is expected to continue based on ordering so far. Weather has been decent, but there is always some nervousness about the potential for dry conditions setting in.

TheCattleSite News Desk

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