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Chilled and frozen beef for Europe is at its worst
December 22, 2018

Not even the fact that the Euro is quoting close to 1.1 4 units per dollar prevents the collapse of the chilled rump & loin market to Europe.

Slaughter increase in Uruguay comes at a time when importers don't show greater interest because they have already closed their purchases for the holidays. "Now we have to wait until week 50 to see where the market is positioned for the first arrivals of 2019", a broker said.

With clear bearish pressure, "it is difficult to establish a reference" for the market. "It depends on the urgency to sell and the type of customer", he said. In Uruguay, last week there were deals for Hilton rump & loin at US$/t 10,300 FOB, but this week there were industries that were offering the merchandise below US$ 10,000 with no success, a trader assured. The bearish current also reached Argentina, where deals were closed at US$ 10,800 FOB, and European importers passing bids of up to US$ 10,500.

One option to release pressure on the chilled market would be to bet on frozen beef. However, in the opinion of two brokers, today that business is "a risk" for Uruguay because Europe has an oversupply of Brazilian meat that has depressed values. "The answer is that Brazil is US$ 3,000 cheaper than Uruguay every time we ask", said an operator.

To this we must add that in the first weeks of January importers will have to dispatch and place the quarterly load of the 481 quota of fed cattle beef. Precisely, about that deal, a Uruguayan trader said that negotiations for February loads are just beginning. "The vast majority of customers are committed to maintaining the same values of the first quarter; there may be some correction, but it won't be significant", said the source. Transactions for the 481 quota are usually more stable in sale values than Hilton.

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