USDA cuts beef, pork production projections


By John Perkins, Brownfield 

April 9, 2019


The USDA lowered its production outlooks for beef, pork, and broiler chicken.


Beef was down 20 million pounds on the month at 27.280 billion with expectations for lower carcass weights to mostly cancel out a higher pace of slaughter, while pork was 105 million pounds lower at 27.325 billion on a slower slaughter pace against higher hog weights.


Broiler production was down 90 million pounds at 43.01 billion because of recent hatchery numbers and generally lighter weights, but turkey was 5 million pounds from March at 5.86 billion.


The USDA’s average price estimates were mixed on steers and broilers, now at $117 to $122 per hundredweight and $.94 to $.98 per pound, respectively, sharply higher for barrows and gilts at $45 to $47 per hundredweight, and steady to up slightly on turkeys at $.85 to $.89 per pound.


Beef trade projections were unchanged, aside from a slightly higher per capita consumption guess, up 0.3 pounds per person to 57.6, while pork exports were 50 million pounds higher at 6.175 billion, with the assumption current trade policies remain in place...