Wednesday, May 19, 2021

Agentinas’ beef producers stage strike

Meat producers in Argentina have announced a retaliatory strike in response to a government ban on meat exports.

The export ban – which was implemented this week and will last at least 30 days – is part of the government’s attempt to control runaway inflation. So far in 2021, meat prices are up by 22 per cent and are 65 per cent higher than a year ago.

But according to a report from the Buenos Aires Times, the Liaison Commission for Agricultural Entities (which includes producers) has announced it will cease “all categories of cattle trade” from midnight Thursday to May 28.

"We are going to join together immediately to totally reject this disastrous measure," Daniel Peregrina, president of the Argentina Rural Society industry group, told the Times. "The damage caused by the measure will decrease the supply of meat, making prices rise as has happened in the past."

A one-year ban that turned into 10 years resulted in a 12-million-head decline in the nation's beef herd.

The Rafaela Alimentos processing plant in Casilda, which employs 650 workers, temporarily shut down.

Argentina is the fourth-largest beef exporter in the world, and in 2020, it exported $3.37 billion in beef and cow leather, mainly to China, Germany, and Israel.