According to the latest Sheep Industry Projections update from Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA), the Australian sheepmeat industry is expected to have a prosperous year in 2023, as the national sheep flock is predicted to grow to its highest level since 2007…

…with a forecast of 78.75 million head due to optimal breeding conditions and improved lambing percentages.

The growth is expected across all states, with larger improvements in flock numbers expected from South Australia, Western Australia, Queensland, and Tasmania. This is expected to lead to an increase in slaughter numbers and production, with lamb slaughter forecasted to reach 22.6 million in 2023. The industry’s ability to continue delivering high-quality protein will make 2023 a positive and optimistic year.

According to the US Meat Export Federation (USMEF), exports of US lamb muscle cuts saw a strong year in 2022, despite a slowdown in December.

The total exports for the year were 2,225 metric tons, a 59% increase compared to the previous year and the highest since 2019. The export value also increased by 49% to $13.2 million, which was also the highest since 2019.

The growth was mainly driven by an increase in demand in the Caribbean, especially in the Netherlands Antilles, the Dominican Republic, and the Bahamas. Exports also increased significantly to Mexico, Canada, the Philippines, and Taiwan.

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