India on track to become the world's largest beef exporter

India will ship roughly 1.5mt of beef in 2012. (avlxyz/Flickr)

India is on track to overtake Australia as the world’s largest exporter of beef and veal in 2012, according to a forecast made by the US Department of Agricultures (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service

India will ship roughly 1.5mt of beef in 2012, surpassing current top exporter Australia, according to the USDA report. That is more than double the exports India logged three years ago.

According to the report, global beef production in 2012 will be virtually unchanged from the last forecast of 57mt.

Global exports, however, are expected to increase by 497,000 tonnes to a record 8.7mt. India is seen accounting for 250,000 tonnes of the incremental exports, with additional export-oriented slaughterhouses expected to come on line this year.

India is followed by Australia (1.4mt), Brazil (1.3mt), the United States (1.2mt), New Zealand (544,000 tonnes), Canada (450,000 tonnes), the European Union (445,000 tonnes), Uruguay (315,000 tonnes) and Argentina (280,000 tonnes).

Indian beef output is being boosted by further expansion of their dairy herd, efficiency improvements and increased carcase weights.