The latest USDA World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates Report forecasts lower beef production compared to the previous quarter from the third quarter of 2013 through the second quarter of 2014.
Compared to a forecast from the previous month’s report, the USDA has lowered its beef production projection by 100 million pounds for the year. The new estimate is 576 million lower than totals in 2012.
Looking ahead to annual beef production in 2014, the USDA remains steady on its prediction of 24.1 billion, over 1.8 billion lower than the 2012 figure.
The forecast for overall red meat production is reduced from the previous month due to lower beef, pork and turkey production. Fewer cattle were slaughtered in Q2 than expected which the USDA says more than offsets higher slaughter numbers expected from July to December.
The USDA lowered its annual cattle price forecast based on recent market activity, that trend has been carried over to early 2014 expectations as well. This year’s projected steer price moved from a range of 125-130 to 124-127 per cwt. Although prices are expected to move higher in 2014, the USDA has lowered next year’s projected steer price from a range of 128-138 to a range of 126-137 per cwt.
Beef exports for 2013 and 2014 are unchanged. The USDA reports the beef import forecast is lowered for 2013 and 2014 due largely to expected tight supplies in Oceania.