USDA lowers 2023 production forecast for red meat and poultry

Reduction due to higher beef and pork production that was more than offset by lower broiler and turkey production.

Krissa Welshans, Livestock Editor

October 13, 2023

2 Min Read

In the latest “World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates” report, USDA lowered the forecast for 2023 red meat and poultry production to 1.07 billion pounds (lbs.), down slightly from last month. According to the agency, the reduction is due to higher beef and pork production that was more than offset by lower broiler and turkey production.

USDA raised beef production to 26.98 million lbs. on higher cow and bull slaughter in the second half of the year “which more than offsets lowered third-quarter steer and heifer slaughter.” However, the increase in total slaughter is partially offset by lower dressed weights.

USDA also raised the 2023 pork production, to 27.29 million lbs., due to a higher-than-expected pace of slaughter and upward revisions to the first-half 2023 pig crop.

Both broiler and turkey production were lowered to 46.49 million lbs. and 5.55 million lbs., respectively. USDA also lowered its 2023 egg production forecast to 9.18 million dozen eggs on lower expected hatching egg production.

For 2024, USDA raised the red meat and poultry production forecast slightly to 106.66 billion lbs. Beef production was raised primarily on higher feedlot marketings while pork production was raised as the USDA’s quarterly “Hogs and Pigs” report, released Sept. 28, which pointed to a more rapid rate of growth in pigs per litter than previously expected.

With larger expected pig crops in the second half of 2023 and first-half 2024, slaughter in 2024 is forecast higher, boosting the production forecast,” USDA noted.

Broiler and turkey production forecasts were lowered on recent hatchery data and expectations for modest growth in production during the year. Total egg production was unchanged for 2024.

As for price outlooks, USDA lowered the 2023 cattle price forecast to $177.30/cwt., down from $178.50/cwt. in September. The price reduction reflects September and early October prices and weaker expected demand for cattle during the fourth quarter of the year, USDA said. Cattle prices for 2024 were also lowered from last month, as larger supplies of cattle in feedlots are expected to put downward pressure on fed cattle prices.

The hog price forecast for 2023 was lowered from last month to $59.70/cwt. due to current prices and larger hog supplies. The 2024 forecast was also lowered as larger supplies of hogs are expected to pressure prices.

Lower production caused USDA to lower its broiler price forecasts for 2023 and 2024 to $1.24/lb. and $1.22/lb., respectively. Turkey price forecasts for 2023 and 2024 were also reduced to $1.45/lb. and $1.38/lb., respectively, on continued weakness in demand. The 2023 and 2024 egg price forecasts were lowered to $1.83/doz. and $1.45/doz., respectively.

On the dairy side, USDA raised the 2023 milk production forecast 227.6 billion lbs. due to slightly more rapid growth in milk per cow. The forecast for 2024 was unchanged from last month. USDA’s 2023 all milk price forecast was raised to $20.70/cwt and the 2024 all milk price was raised to $20.55/cwt.

About the Author(s)

Krissa Welshans

Livestock Editor

Krissa Welshans grew up on a crop farm and cow-calf operation in Marlette, Michigan. Welshans earned a bachelor’s degree in animal science from Michigan State University and master’s degree in public policy from New England College. She and her husband Brock run a show cattle operation in Henrietta, Texas, where they reside with their son, Wynn.

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