Spanish beef struggling as consumer spending drops
The Spanish beef sector is finding it difficult to compete, amid declining levels of consumer spending.
According to Bord Bia, the domestic beef sector in Spain remains dependent on sourcing animals and feed abroad.
But with the ongoing volatility of prices, the sector is becoming unstable and uncompetitive.
This has lead to a fall of more than 10pc on the volume of beef produced during the 2008-2010 period.
The drop in domestic demand has led to a 12pc jump in exports of Spanish beef. Imports have increased marginally as retailers search for more competitively priced product.
The Spanish beef sector has its sights set on the export market potential for both live cattle and beef to international markets such as the Lebanon, Egypt, Morocco and Turkey.
Irish beef and livestock managed to compete in this aggressive environment last year. However, with tighter Irish supplies and prices running ahead of last year, the market is likely to be challenging for exporters, as consumer spending seems unlikely to improve.