Home » Americans hungry for premium Australian Wagyu beef dish out $1,500 for a steak

Americans hungry for premium Australian Wagyu beef dish out $1,500 for a steak

After years of focusing on the Asian and domestic market, Australia’s Wagyu beef producers are turning their attention to America. 

The trade of high-quality marbled Wagyu beef is a lucrative industry, with meat selling for as much as $450 a kilogram.

Australia is the world’s largest exporter of Wagyu beef, which is now a multi-billion-dollar industry.

When Australian production started in the 1990s, the early market for Wagyu beef was within Asia, with beef exported to Singapore, Seoul, Hong Kong, and Macau.

But with strongly increased domestic demand, and a burgeoning North American market, where Australian Wagyu is being sent is starting to shift.

Changing markets

South Australian business Mayura Station jumped on the opportunity Wagyu presented early on, growing from 25 full-blood Wagyu cattle in 1998 to a current herd of around 10,000.

Scott de Bruin says his business has spent decades improving the quality of its Wagyu beef.(ABC South East SA: Elsie Adamo)

Mayura Station managing director Scott de Bruin said initially the business had a strong focus on exporting to Asia.

“We moved into the markets that understood the value of Wagyu and were prepared to pay for it, so that was why we were selling it to Asia,” Mr de Bruin said.

But other markets have strengthened significantly since the early days.