Market Outlook

Market Outlook

Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry Outlook, December 2017 (summary)

First-Half 2018 Forecasts for Red Meat, Poultry, Eggs, and Milk Show Mostly Year-Over-Year Production Increases with Lower Prices

With the exception of lamb and eggs, larger year-over-year product supplies are accompanied by lower prices. For cattle, higher second-half 2017 cattle placements are expected to lead to higher first-half 2018 fed cattle marketings and seasonally higher (+5.1 percent) beef production. First-half 2018 cattle prices are expected to be 7. 3 percent below prices in the first-half of 2017. Higher first-half 2018 pork production (+4.3 percent) derives mostly from expected higher second-half 2017 pig crops. Consequently, hog prices are expected to fall 2.4 percent below those in the first half of 2017. For broilers, expected higher producer returns drive relatively small production increases. First-half broiler prices are forecast to decline by 6.8 percent. For turkeys, a modest recovery in domestic demand and exports drives small increases in production (+0.24 percent), but low prices continue to underscore the slow pace of demand recovery relative to supply levels. First-half 2018 turkey prices are expected to fall by 9.8 percent. Milk production in the first half of 2018 is forecast to increase over the first half of 2017 by 1.6 percent. Although milk prices are expected to decline from 2017 to 2018, relatively low feed prices are expected to encourage expansion of the milk cow herd and greater yield per cow, although at a slower rate than forecast last month. For eggs, expected first-half 2018 price increases (+17.7 percent) reflect the year-earlier low prices that prevailed due to record-level supplies. Production growth (+0.9 percent) in the first half of 2018 is expected to be moderate as producers continue to recover from margins that were relatively low until recently. 

Poultry: The broiler market has been stable. Projections for prices were slightly decreased, and year-ending stock projections were increased on recent data. Egg prices have continued to soar, leading to higher price projections for the current quarter and 2018. Hatchery data, indicators for future production, have revealed that producers may expand their flocks. Turkey prices remain below historical averages, indicating that demand is weak relative to current supply levels. Prices next year are expected to average $0.93-$1.00 per pound, about 1 percent higher than prices in 2017, while the production forecast is unchanged.

See the December LDP Outlook report and previous reports.

Poultry & Eggs
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Last updated: Monday, December 18, 2017

For more information contact: Sean Ramos

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