Record high returns for New Zealand meat in 2013-2014, says B+LNZ

Despite the strong dollar, New Zealand meat exports reached a record high of $5.3 billion in the 2013-14, driven by high average values. 

The 2013-14 meat export season concluded on 30 September and analysis by Beef + Lamb New Zealand’s (B+LNZ) Economic Service shows it was a positive year for beef, veal, lamb and mutton exports – up $480 million on last season.

Andrew Burtt, B+LNZ chief economist. Picture B+LNZ.B+LNZ chief economist Andrew Burtt says that, for the second season in a row, North Asia was the largest market region for New Zealand meat exports, accounting for 31 percent of total returns, while the European Union (EU) and North America remained the primary markets for lamb and beef/veal, respectively.

“The amount of lamb exported was down three percent, reflecting last season’s smaller lamb crop, but total returns were up 9.5 percent to $2.52 billion. That’s because the average per tonne value of lamb being exported rose 13 percent – to $8,300, compared to $7,400 in 2012-13.

Burtt says the EU accounted for 48 percent of lamb returns in the 2013-14 season.

“North Asia was the second largest market destination for New Zealand lamb, at 34 percent by volume, but average returns were well below those achieved in the EU, reflecting the different product mixes exported to the two regions. For the season just concluded, the average per tonne return for North Asia was $6,000, compared to $10,200 for the EU,” says Burtt.

Ninety-four per cent of lamb exports were further-processed, while 22 per cent were chilled product.

The 2013-14 year was New Zealand’s second largest mutton export season, at 93,000 tonnes – up 11 percent on last season – mainly due to land use switching to dairying.

It was also the second largest beef and veal export season in history – 383,000 tonnes – as a result of high beef production and an increased number of dairy cows processed.

“Total beef and veal returns were up 8.4 per cent to $2.29 billion, while the average value was up 2.1 per cent to $6,000 per tonne. North America accounted for 48 per cent of beef and veal returns, while North Asia accounted for 30 per cent.”

Please note that all values quoted are FOB (free on board) and in New Zealand dollars.

Meat exports analysis tool

B+LNZ has developed an interactive tool for further analysis of New Zealand’s meat exports. The tool allows you to generate and download customised data and graphs of export lamb, mutton and beef statistics, by market, value, and volume. Access it at:

Material supplied by B+LNZ Ltd.

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