The Market's Fine Print
John Harrington DTN Livestock Analyst
Wed Sep 12, 2012 10:57 AM CDT

They say you never forget your first love: That first awkward date, that first exhilarating kiss, that first joyful gallop around the bases.

If you're pressed for time, don't ever ask beef exporters about their greatest romance. These nostalgic shippers will talk about Japan until the sun comes up.

1977 marked the first year U.S. beef exports exceeded 100 million pounds on a carcass weight basis, still less than half a percent of total domestic production. Yet even then there was absolutely no doubt which beef-hungry country we were stuck on.

The promise of Japan's demand in the last third ...

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