More Meat Sales, Fewer Live Cattle

In recent years, Nicaraguan beef exports have been on the rise due to the improved quality of the product, but foreign sales of live cattle have been declining due to the deterioration of trade relations with Venezuela.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Official figures specify that between 2019 and 2020 Nicaraguan beef exports increased by 4%, going from $522 million to $542 million.

The main buyers of Nicaraguan frozen beef are the USA, Venezuela, Taiwan and Guatemala. In the case of fresh or refrigerated beef, El Salvador, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Costa Rica are the main destination markets for foreign sales.

See "Beef: Regional Exports Up 24%"

Álvaro Vargas, president of the Federation of Livestock Associations of Nicaragua (Faganic), told Laprensa.com.ni that "... almost 50% of the meat sold abroad comes from a fattened animal, which improves the positioning of the product in international markets."

This upward trend in beef sales can be explained by the improvements in product quality that cattle farmers have been promoting in recent years.

Also see "Beef: How Much Has the Market Grown?"
 
In contrast to beef sales, live cattle exports have fallen in recent years. Salvador Castillo, director of Faganic, explained that "... the figures have fallen in cattle in the face of the loss of international markets. 'the reductions have started since the loss of Venezuela's international market since 2018'."

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Livestock Sector in Nicaragua: 2013 Balance

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The increase in exports of live cattle was not enough to compensate for the freezing of meat prices and lower demand from the international market.

The increase in exports of live cattle, on which $20 million to $40 million was spent for 2013 "was not enough to offset the price freeze on meat and the reduction in volume demanded by the foreign market," noted an article in Laprensa.com.ni.

Cattle Farmers Negotiate Prices with Venezuela

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In order to renew a trade agreement that expires at the end of September, Nicaraguan farmers are asking for a 20% increase in the price of meat exported to Venezuela.

The price of beef exported by Nicaragua to Venezuela under the current agreement is $4,300 a tonne, a figure that farmers want raised to $5,160, a 20% increase.

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