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Agricultural News

Tight Hog Supplies Good News for Beef Producers, Jim Robb Says

Wed, 08 Jan 2014 12:47:42 CST

Tight Hog Supplies Good News for Beef Producers, Jim Robb Says

The recent USDA report on hog and pig numbers shows tighter supplies coming into 2014. Jim Robb of the Livestock Market Information Center says that report will impact beef prices a lot more than an average hog and pigs count.

"We've had quite a bit of concern over the last couple of years in terms of competing meat supplies in terms of pork and chicken and those relative prices compared to beef prices and maybe taking some market share away. We really haven't seen that in the last two years, but we were very concerned looking ahead here to 2014 with very strong profitability in both the pork and the chicken sectors.

"The USDA Hog and Pigs report really did show surprisingly tight numbers. Now we've had a disease problem in the U.S.-it really cropped up last summer-called porcine epidemic diarrhea or PED. And that has had quite an impact on the ability of U.S. pork production to ramp up. So, the USDA came in with some surprisingly low numbers. They did substantial revisions to the earlier numbers, so this disease situation is really putting a cap on the growth potential of the U.S. hog industry and we're not going to see quite as much competition at the meat case as we expected a couple of months ago."

Rob says those tight numbers mean consumers may not be so ready to choose pork and poultry over beef. He says he expects record-high beef prices in 2014 due to tighter beef supplies and higher pork prices will help mitigate some of the damage expected to beef demand.

"That is a bit of good news that we didn't anticipate a few months ago from a beef-industry perspective."

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.


LMIC's Jim Robb talks about the impact of the latest USDA Hog and Pigs report for beef producers.
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