Brazilian beef exporters saw an 8% increase in 2020 to 2.02 million metric tons. That’s according to Brazilian beef industry association Abrafrigo, which also reported revenue from beef exports last year were 11% higher at $8.4 billion.
Abrafrigo said it expects a 5% increase in Brazilian beef export volume in 2021.
“For 2021, Abrafrigo expects the continuation of China’s purchasing pace and some increase in imports from the European Union, Arab countries and new markets, with improvement in the global economic situation thanks to the start of the vaccination against COVID-19 and resumption of consumption of food outside homes,” the organization said in a statement.
China was the largest buyer of Brazilian beef last year, with 1.18 billion metric tons of imports through the continent and Hong Kong. Egypt was the second-largest customer at 127,953 metric tons, down 23%.
The United States was among Brazil’s top four beef importers last year, when it acquired 59,544 metric tons, up 53.8% year-over-year, due to the opening of the U.S. market to Brazil’s fresh beef in Feb. 2020.