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Beef Production, Markets, and Trade in Argentina and Uruguay: An Overview

by Kenneth Mathews and Monte Vandeveer

Outlook No. (LDPM-15901) 13 pp, September 2007

Argentina and Uruguay (A/U) are significant beef exporters and among the world’s greatest consumers of beef on a per capita basis. Between 13 and 20 percent of U.S. beef imports, on a tonnage basis, come from these two countries annually, and it is mostly grass-fed beef. Currently, only 10-20 percent of A/U beef production involves a feedlot. Both countries have recently implemented national animal identification systems, and their export slaughter facilities are up to the World Trade Organization’s sanitary standards. Both countries are considered free from bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) by virtue of their pasture-based production technologies, but wrestle with foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). Argentine cattle/beef markets and trade are clearly and significantly affected by Government interventions in the domestic market. In contrast, Uruguay focuses on exporting beef.

Keywords: Argentina, Uruguay, cattle, beef, trade, exports, imports, BSE, bovine spongiform encephalopathy, FMD, foot and mouth disease, consumption, feedlot, grass-fed

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Last updated: Sunday, May 27, 2012

For more information contact: Kenneth Mathews and Monte Vandeveer

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