Wesley Batista, who heads the world’s largest meat company, said a formal announcement on meat exports is expected next month when Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff visits Washington.
Brazil already exports canned beef and other cooked beef to the US. The anticipated deal would cover fresh beef.
But although the deal "without any doubt would benefit the flow of volumes from Brazil" it would not be a "transformational event" for Brazil’s beef industry, Batista said. Little impact would be felt until next year because of likely delays in implementing the deal and approval needed for individual plants, he added.
Batista was speaking on a conference call to discuss JBS’ record first-quarter earnings, which surged nearly 20-fold from a year ago to Rs1.39 billion ($457m), up from Rs70m in the first quarter of 2014. The growth was partly attributed to hedging on currency exchange rates, which helped cut large net financial expenses accrued the year before.