Standard Bank_ Agribusiness Biweekly Insights: Livestock Report (01 September 2023)



The South African beef industry has welcomed the resumption of beef exports to China and Saudi Arabia over the last two weeks. Saudi Arabia banned domestic beef exports 21 years ago, after it had last imported small quantities around the early 2000s. The ban was due to certain halal procedural issues that needed to be addressed by South African abattoirs and feedlots. On the other hand, China lifted the ban on beef imports from South Africa which had been imposed in April 2022. This Chinese ban followed an outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in South Africa. In value terms, China has been a leading importer of South African frozen beef cuts. This reopening of beef export markets is expected to support domestic beef prices and production. The gradual broadening of South Africa’s beef export markets is testament to what the country’s agricultural sector could achieve through collaboration and aligned interests between the government and the private sector.

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