Feeder and slaughter cattle exports edged above 66,000 head in October, five percent higher year-on-year.
However shipments for the calendar year-to-October were back 23pc compared with the same period last year at 631,000 head.
Meat & Livestock Australia says there are increased prospects for cattle exports to Turkey to expand, as the Turkish government targets a 700,000 head import quota in order to control domestic beef prices.
Shipments of feeder and slaughter cattle to Indonesia in October totalled 38,646 head, an increase of 37 percent year-on-year – albeit off a low base following a return in exports post the disruption caused by the Indonesian government’s introduction of the breeder policy rule.
MLA expects cattle exports to Indonesia to decline towards the end of the year, due to the pressure of high Australian cattle prices and the impact of less expensive Indian buffalo meat (IBM) on demand.
“Current wet market prices for IBM in the Greater Jakarta and West Java area continue to vary and range from IDR 80,000-100,000/kg, while fresh beef trades at a premium from IDR 105,000-115,000/kg. The Indonesian Bureau of Logistics (BULOG) plans to import around 9,000 tonnes (IBM) during the next two months,” an MLA update states.
Exports of breeder cattle totalled only 1,354 head in October, well below the volumes needed to meet the requirements of Indonesia’s 1:5 breeder to feeder cattle import ratio. “However, if prices move in the right direction for importers, more could be expected before the end of the year.”
Total cattle exports to Indonesian for the calendar year are forecast to surpass 500,000 head.
Cattle exports to Vietnam totalled 11,774 head, back 29pc year-on-year.
The availability of local (regional) cattle at the moment in Vietnam remains strong.
“Australian cattle sales are therefore still relatively subdued due to higher prices or lower profitability in abattoirs. However, demand for Australian cattle will be supported in the lead up to Vietnamese New Year in February.”
MLA estimates cattle shipments to Vietnam to finish the year at approximately 160,000 head.
Following two consecutive months of no recorded shipments to China, there were 6,138 head of breeder cattle exported in October, an increase of 58pc year-on-year. For the calendar year-to-date exports are down 37pc, to 51,162 head – underpinned by weak demand in the dairy industry in China.
Cattle exports to Turkey totalled 11,253 head – the first recorded shipment of cattle to Turkey for the calendar year.
“The Turkish government is aiming to import an estimated 700,000 head of cattle this year in order to control beef prices in the country, with Australian cattle in the short term being used as a means to reach the target. The majority of cattle supplied to Turkey come from Europe and South America and this continues to be the case.”
For the calendar year-to-October, cattle exports to Malaysia were just above 12,500 head, a decline of 56 % year-on-year. Cheaper cattle from Thailand continue to support demand in Malaysia.