Broiler production projections were revised down on hatchery data and relatively low prices, while export and price projections were not changed, according to USDA latest Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry Outlook.

August broiler production was 3.9 billion pounds, approximately 3.3 percent higher than a year earlier. Growth was composed of average weights up nearly 1.6 percent from last year and nearly 1.6 percent more birds slaughtered, based on USDA latest outlook .

The number of chicks placed in meat-growing operations through September pointed to a substantially negative trend and lowered expectations for the number of birds available for slaughter in the next 6-7 weeks. A seasonal decline in placements was expected but may have been exaggerated due to weaker-than-normal prices, including those for breast meat.

August-September prices for boneless/skinless breasts in the Northeast, an important indicator of producer margins, have been the lowest in decades; available data shows August 2018 was the lowest August price since 1972 and September 2018 was the lowest September price since the series began in 1971.

The reduced rate of placements supported a reduction of 25 million pounds of production in each of the third and fourth quarters of 2018, resulting in expected annual growth of 2.2 percent. The first and second quarters of 2019 were also reduced by 25 million pounds each, resulting in expected annual growth of 1.9 percent.

Broiler exports totaled 624 million pounds in August, up 8 percent from a year earlier. However, for the second consecutive month, broiler export values were down year over year (YOY) by 1 percent to $278.8 million, reflecting low domestic wholesale prices. Although export values and unit values have been down YOY in recent months,

 

 

 

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