Red Meat Supplies Down From Last Year

Total red meat supplies in US freezers as of July 31 amounted to 1.030 billion pounds, 13 million, or up 1.28% from 1.017 billion on June 30 but were down 88 million, or 7.87% from 1.118 billion last year, according to the August Cold Storage report from the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service Tuesday.




Total inventories of beef in cold storage on July 31 were 430.4 million pounds.  This was up 15.1 million, or 3.64%, from 415.3 million a month earlier but down 39.3 million, or 8.37%, from 469.7 million a year earlier.

The amount of boneless beef in the nation’s freezers came in at 396.7 million pounds, up 13.0 million, or 3.39%, from 383.7 million a month earlier.  However, it was down 36.2 million, or 8.36%, from 432.9 million on July 31, 2016.

Beef cuts in cold storage came to 33.8 million pounds, up 2.1 million, or 6.64%, from 31.7 million a month earlier but down 3.1 million, or 8.43%, from 36.9 million a year ago.

Beef inventories were down from the record July high of 479.2 million pounds set in 2006 but were above the record low of 15.0 million set in 1932.




Total amounts of pork in cold storage at the end of July came to 556.2 million pounds, 6.7 million, or 1.19%, less than the 562.9 million a month earlier.  The 2017 total also was 42.4 million, or 7.09%, less than the 598.6 million pounds of a year earlier.

Of the total pork on ice, 17.6 million pounds were pork bellies.  This was down 4.7 million pounds, or 21.3%, from 22.3 million just a month earlier and down 33.2 million, or 65.4%, from 50.7 million a year ago.

The latest July pork totals in cold storage were below the record high for the month of 633.2 million pounds set in 2015 but were well above the record low of 83.1 million pounds marked in 1935.




Total frozen poultry supplies on July 31 were 1.4 billion pounds, up 14.0 million, or 1.02%, from 1.4 billion a month earlier and were up 25.0 million, or 1.83%, from 1.4 billion a year earlier.

However, it was all turkeys as chicken supplies on ice at the end of July totaled 794.8 million pounds, down 11.3 million, or 1.41%, from 806.2 million at the end of June and down 29.1 million, or 3.53%, from 823.9 million a year earlier.

Turkey stocks in cold storage amounted to 590.4 million pounds, up 25.2 million, or 4.46%, from 565.2 million a month earlier and up 60.1 million, or 11.3%, from 530.278 million a year earlier.




There were no sales last Wednesday on the livestock exchange video auction.  A week earlier, cattle sold at $115.04 per cwt, down $0.96 from $116.00 the previous week.  Cattle with 1- to 9-day delivery sold at $115.28, versus $116 the previous week.  Those with 1- to 17-day delivery sold at $114.50, and cattle with 17- to 30-day delivery sold at $114.00.

Cash action was seen last week at mostly $110 up to $110.50 per cwt on a live basis, down $4 to $6 from the previous week, and at $175 to $177 dressed down $8 to $10.

The USDA’s choice cutout Tuesday was down $0.06 per cwt at $193.03, while select was off $0.73 at $190.89.  The choice/select spread widened to $2.14 from $1.47 with 102 loads of fabricated product sold into the spot market.

The CME Feeder Cattle index for the seven days ended Monday was $143.43 per cwt, down $0.06.  This compares with Tuesday’s Aug settlement at $142.07, up $2.27.