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Agri-Pulse reports:

Strong demand worldwide is pushing U.S. beef exports higher than last year, according to a new report by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEFBeef ). The newly released analysis shows that the U.S. has shipped about $6.2 billion worth of beef around the globe from January through September, an 18 percent increase from the same time period in 2017.

That's more than 1 million metric tons of beef and a lot of it is going to South Korea, where imports have been rising quickly.

"South Korea has been the growth pacesetter for U.S. beef exports in 2018, and September was no exception," USMEF concluded in the report. In September alone, South Korea imported $143 million worth of U.S. beef. From January through September, the country bought $1.29 billion worth of beef. That's a new record and more than South Korea bought in all of 2017.

South Korea is also buying a lot of pork and sales of the meat globally are still strong, but they are not growing as strong as they could thanks to the fallout from President Donald Trump's trade tariffs. China and Mexico are both levying retaliatory tariffs on U.S. pork and that's impacting exports, according to USMEF.

"With a full quarter still to be reported, beef export value records are already being surpassed in some markets and global value is on track for $8 billion by year's end," said USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom. "Pork exports have also held up relatively well, but unfortunately the obstacles U.S. pork faces in China and Mexico are putting a lot of pressure on export value."

U.S. Pork and pork variety meat exports world-wide totaled $4.8 billion for the first nine months of this year, about two percent more than last year.

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