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New Zealand red meat exports reach record high

Christian Fernsby |
The New Zealand red meat exports hit 9.2 billion New Zealand dollars in 2020 with China remaining the largest market, showed the latest data released by the New Zealand Meat Industry Association (MIA).

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Topics: NEW ZEALAND   

The country's overall red meat exports in 2020 reached a record high, an increase of 1 percent from 2019, of 7 percent from 2018 and of 21 percent from 2017, showed the MIA data.

"The results demonstrate that New Zealand's red meat exports have remained stable despite the challenges of the global pandemic," said MIA chief executive Sirma Karapeeva.

"That is great news for the New Zealand economy and for farmers. It also highlights the key role our industry is playing in underpinning the New Zealand economy during the global pandemic," said Karapeeva.

Meanwhile, China remained the major customer as the industry recorded red meat exports worth 3.3 billion NZ dollars to it, or 36 percent of the total in 2020.

Red meat exports to China were down from the record level of 2019 at 3.7 billion NZ dollars but were still 40 percent higher than the 2018 figure, according to the MIA data.

New Zealand sheep meat exports rose 3 percent to over 400,000 tons, with China being the biggest market, followed by Britain and the United States.

In 2020, New Zealand beef exports rose in both volume and value, to 471,718 tons and 3.7 billion NZ dollars, with the U.S. being the largest market.

Beef exports to China dropped 26 percent from the record level of 2019.

Meanwhile, the largest market for halal-certified exports was China in 2020 with 277,472 tons, or 60 percent of New Zealand's total halal-certified exports, according to the MIA data.

In December, New Zealand's red meat exports totaled 836.7 million NZ dollars, with China being the largest market, followed by the U.S. and Britain.

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