May 28, 2024

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Meat consumption hits record low in Argentina

Meat consumption hits record low in Argentina

Beef consumption in Argentina, Argentina's symbol and main export, has fallen sharply in recent months, reaching historic levels on the back of declining purchasing power, the industry-industry association said.

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In the year from March 2023 to March 2024, beef consumption fell by 18.5% to an average of 42.6 kg per person per year, or almost 10 kg less than the previous year, according to a Chamber of Industry and Meat Trade report. (CICCRA).

Unsurprisingly, this drop is due to rising prices, which reached almost 278% for sliced ​​meat, which is in the same line as inflation (287% year-on-year). A more significant drop in consumption in the last three months has been linked to a decline in purchasing power due to the devaluation of the peso (more than 50% in December).

Production was flat or in slight decline at just under 750,000 tonnes in the first quarter, but with a strong increase in exports, up 23% year-on-year.

Over time, Argentinians eat far less red meat than in the past. Per capita consumption in the 1980s was 78 kg per year, down to an average of 60 kg a decade ago, according to data from the Institute for Beef Improvement.

It faced competition from cheaper meats such as pork or chicken, the consumption of which has doubled in 30 years, almost to the level of beef now, at more than 40 kg per person.

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However, Argentinians remain the world's leading consumers of beef, closely followed or, depending on the year, surpassed by neighboring Uruguay.