What will be the Impact of Argentina's 30-day Ban on Beef Exports?

June 14, 2021

After taking the unprecedented step of placing a 30-day ban on its beef exports in May, Argentina has moved to lift the ban, but several restrictive measures remain in place.  As reported on Beef Central, Argentinian beef exporters are now permitted to return to the global beef export trade at 50 percent of the country's 2020 volume.  Full suspensions are in place on certain cuts.  Whilst a review of these measures is scheduled for the end of August, it is anticipated that restrictions will remain in place for the rest of the year.  

In a move that appears to be driven by upcoming elections in the country, Argentina placed a 30-day ban on all beef exports in an effort to reduce local meat prices, which has been soaring in recent months.  

As one of the largest beef exporters in the world, Argentina moved around $US3billion, or 750,000 tonnes, of beef in 2020.  Whilst the European Union and United States are exempt from the ban, and subsequent restrictions, the major buyer of Argentinian beef is China, raising questions as to who will fill the void caused by the move.

With Brazil struggling to meet the demand, and high prices in North America, it is speculated that New Zealand might supply the increasing global market.

It is also speculated that the trade restrictions could result in a global beef shortage, in what is already a tight market.  

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