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Agricultural News

Lighter Carcass Weights Likely to Result in Lower Beef Production in 2020- Higher Poultry Output in the Pipeline

Mon, 13 Jan 2020 15:16:53 CST

Lighter Carcass Weights Likely to Result in Lower Beef Production in 2020- Higher Poultry Output in the Pipeline The total red meat and poultry production forecast for 2020 increased modestly from last month as higher broiler production more than offsets lower expected beef, pork, and turkey production, USDA said in its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report this past Friday.

The 2019 total red meat and poultry production estimate is reduced from last month as lower pork and turkey production more than offset higher beef production.

The beef production estimate is raised on the pace of late-year slaughter. The pork production estimate is reduced on the slower pace of slaughter in late 2019. The broiler production estimate is unchanged from the previous month, but the turkey production estimate is lowered or recent production data.


The 2020 beef production forecast is reduced on lighter expected carcass weights. However, quarterly beef production was increased in the first half of the year and reduced in the second half of the year due to higher-than-expected cattle placements in late 2019 and a reduced placement forecast for early 2020.

The beef import forecast is increased for 2019 on recent trade data. No change is made to the 2020 import forecast. The 2019 beef export forecast is reduced to reflect a slower export pace late in the year, but no change is made to the 2020 beef export forecast.

For 2020, the first-quarter cattle price is raised, reflecting current early-year price strength.


The pork production forecast for 2020 is reduced from the previous month. USDA’s Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report estimated the 2019 September-November pig crop 2 percent higher than the prior year which supports a higher first-half 2020 slaughter and production forecast.

The report also indicated producers intend to expand farrowings about 1 percent in the first half of 2020, which coupled with adjustments to the rate of growth in pigs per litter, results in reduced hog slaughter forecast for the second half of 2020.

The pork export forecasts for 2019 and 2020 are unchanged from the previous month.

First-half hog price forecasts are reduced on current prices and increased production.


Forecast broiler production is raised for 2020 on recent hatchery data which points to continued expansion of laying flocks. The turkey production forecast is reduced.

The 2019 broiler export forecast is raised on recent trade data, but no change is made to the 2020 export forecast.

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