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11/04/2017 - 18:47hs

Beef exports climbed in March over February

Foreign sales of the Brazilian product totaled USD 501 million, an increase of 22%. In comparison to March of last year, however, sales declined 3%.

São Paulo – Brazilian beef exports reached USD 501 million in March, an increase of 22% over February. In all, 125,000 tons were shipped, up 20% in the same comparison. Over March of last year, when there were USD 517 million foreign sales, there was a decline of 3% in revenues. The data was made public this Tuesday (11) by the Brazilian Beef Exporters Association (Abiec).

“The positive results seen in March show the strength of the Brazilian beef industry and its potential as exporter. The data confirm that the police operation, launched on March 17, didn’t impact significantly the average of exports, especially because many markets that suspended negotiations after the news, reopened them quickly, demonstrating their trust in Brazilian beef,” said Abiec’s president, Antonio Jorge Camardelli, in a statement released by the association.

The operation by the Federal Police named Carne Fraca is investigating irregularities in meat processing plants and bribing of inspectors of the Ministry of Agriculture.

The association has minimized the operation’s impact on March exports in comparison to the same month of 2016, stating that the decline in revenues “was only 3%.” In volume, however, last month’s shipments went down 10.7% over March 2016, when 140,000 tons were exported.

In some markets, the decrease was more significant. Egypt, for instance, imported 4,400 tons in March 2017, against 23,000 tons in the same month of last year. It was one of the countries that reached a decision to suspend imports from Brazil after the Carne Fraca operation was launched, but later on announced the reopening of its market. Normally, Egypt is at the top positions among importers of Brazilian beef, but last month the country came in at 9th.

Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, increased its imports from 3,000 tons in March 2016 to 6,500 tons in the same month of this year, and revenues generated surged from USD 11 million to USD 26.7 million in the same comparison. The country suspended importers from only some of the plants under investigation, and last week a delegation from the Saudi Food and Drug Authority (SFDA) visited Brazil for technical inspections.

“In the next few months, we will continue to focus on ensuring and expanding our presence in strategic markets and in starting negotiations with new countries,” added Camardelli, according to the statement.

*Translated by Sérgio Kakitani

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