Buffalo meat exports up 9% despite ban

The meat industry faced uncertain times when the Yogi Adityanath government imposed a ban on illegal slaughter houses in Uttar Pradesh leading to crores in losses. Despite the stress, the bovine economy has not seen a drop in buffalo meat exports in 2016-17. Exports of buffalo meat, the largest in the overall agri-export category, moved up 9 percent to USD 982 million on the back of a strong rupee in January-March 2017 as against last year. Buffalo meat exports rose marginally from 16.31 million tonnes (mt) in 2015- 16 to 1.33 mt in 2016-17 in volume terms. However, in rupee terms the exports saw a moderate decline of 1.4 percent to Rs. 26,303 crore. In dollar terms, exports of the item fell 3.5 percent to USD 3.93 billion in 2016-17. Clearing the air regarding the crackdown on slaughter houses, APEDA Chairman DK Singh said that no adverse impact of shutting down illegal meat shops was seen on buffalo meat shipment in the current fiscal as the UP government has closed down only illegal abattoirs. India supplies buffalo meat to as many as 70 countries including Vietnam, Malaysia, Indonesia and the Middle East. Exports will see a rise due to various factors. One is the onset of Ramzan which will increase demand tremendously. Another factor that can help India’s USD 4 billion export-oriented buffalo meat industry is the crisis faced by Brazil. The world’s largest beef exporter is alleged to have sold contaminated meat leading to many countries putting a stop to imports from Brazil.