USDA Estimates Less US Red Meat, Poultry Production

In its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report Tuesday, the USDA lowered its forecast for 2023 red meat and poultry production from last month on lower production forecasts for all meats.

For 2024, the red meat and poultry production forecast was reduced on lower broiler production forecasts as weaker prices were expected to constrain production growth.  No changes were made to beef, pork or turkey forecasts.




The 2023 beef production forecast was reduced on a slower pace of marketings during the third quarter, the report said.  The new estimate was 26.941 billion pounds, down 40 million, or 0.15%, from 26.981 billion last month and down from 2022’s 28.291 billion.

That predicted decline would be offset partly by higher expected carcass weights in the quarter and higher expected cow slaughter in the third and fourth quarters.

2024 beef production was estimated at 25.165 billion pounds, unchanged from last month but down 1.776 billion, or 6.59%, from the latest 2023 estimate.

Beef import forecasts for 2023 and 2024 were raised on continued strength in demand and availability of supplies in Oceania, the report said.  The new estimates were 3.547 and 3.590 billion pounds, respectively, up from 3.512 and 3.560 billion.

Beef export ideas were lowered for 2023 and 2024 on tight domestic supplies and strong competition in Asian markets, the USDA said.  The new estimates were 3.054 and 2.900 billion pounds, respectively, versus last month’s estimates of 3.214 and 2.970 billion.




Second-half 2023 pork production forecasts were lowered with a slower expected pace of slaughter and lighter carcass weights, the USDA said.  The full-year estimate was 27.159 billion pounds, down 105 million, or 0.39%, from August’s 27.264 billion but up 163 million, or 0.60%, from 2022’s 26.996 billion.

2023 pork import estimates were increased 25 million pounds, or 2.31%, to 1.105 billion pounds, from 1.080 billion last month on the current pace of trade but were unchanged for 2024 at 1.155 billion pounds, the USDA said.

Pork export forecasts were lowered for both years on weaker demand.  The new 2023 forecast was 6.801 billion pounds, down 125 million, or 1.80%, from August’s estimate of 6.926 billion.  The new 2024 forecast was 6.900 billion pounds, down 80 million, or 1.15%, from 6.980 billion last month.




The 2023 broiler production estimate was lowered to 46.694 billion pounds from 46.976 billion on current slaughter data and expectations for a lower number of chicks placed and lighter bird weights, the report said.

2024 chicken production was pegged at 47.310 billion pounds, down from 47.470 billion.

Broiler exports for 2023 and 2024 were reduced on the current pace of trade and a lower production forecast, the report said.




The USDA reported formula and contract base prices for live FOB steers and heifers this week ranged from $178.95 per cwt to $187.74, compared with last week’s range of $178.95 to $187.74 per cwt.  FOB dressed steers, and heifers went for $279.95 per cwt to $289.11, compared with $282.62 to $289.11.

The USDA choice cutout Tuesday was down $2.08 per cwt at $308.03 while select was off $1.66 at $283.78.  The choice/select spread narrowed to $24.25 from $24.67 with 103 loads of fabricated product and 27 loads of trimmings and grinds sold into the spot market.

The USDA said basis bids for corn from feeders in the Southern Plains were unchanged at $1.50 to $1.70 a bushel over the Dec corn contract, which settled at $4.76 1/2 a bushel, down $0.09 1/4.

The CME Feeder Cattle Index for the seven days ended Monday was $250.88 per cwt, up $0.46.  This compares with Tuesday’s Sep contract settlement of $255.32 per cwt, down $0.90.