Plain and Brown

Hog Outlook: Retail Pork Prices Increase, Slaughter Total Up

The average retail price of pork during October was a record $3.363 per pound, up 6.3 cents from the month before and 48.3 cents higher than in October 2009. October’s price was the sixth consecutive record high. Having record retail prices is good, unless you need to move a lot of product.

Hog Outlook: Slaughter & Export Demand Increases

Pork exports during April were up 2.2% compared to 12 months earlier. Pork imports were down 4.6%. In April, 5.5 pounds of pork were exported for each pound imported. During the first four months of 2010 pork exports were up 1.5% and imports down 3.5%. January-April exports to Japan, our biggest foreign customer, were down 7.1% but shipments to Mexico and Canada were up 25.7% and 10.6%, respectively.

Cattle Outlook: Beef Export Demand Up, Carcass Rates Increase

USDA's June supply and demand estimates increased forecasted corn use for ethanol and reduced the expected corn carryover. They are currently forecasting that 34.7% of the 2009 corn crop and 35.2% of the 2010 corn crop will be milled for ethanol. USDA is predicting an average farm price for corn in the neighborhood of $3.55/bu for the 2009 crop and $3.60/bu for the 2010 crop.

Cattle Outlook: World Beef Production Expected To Decline In 2010

World beef production is expected to decline in 2010 for the third consecutive year. USDA's Foreign Ag Service is forecasting a 0.7% decline in world production this year compared to 2009. The U.S. is the largest producer of beef and our production is expected to be down 0.8%. FULL STORY »

Hog Outlook: Lower Prices The Last Two Weeks May Reflect A Slowdown In Retail Movement

The lower hog prices the last two weeks may reflect a slowdown in retail movement. Hog prices quickly moved higher in April and May. Those prices are now showing up in the meat case. Hopefully, the upcoming three day weekend will bring lots of grilling and a need for stores to restock next week. FULL STORY »

Cattle Outlook: Steer Carcass Weights Up

There were 373 million pounds of beef in cold storage at the end of April. That is 2.9% less than a month earlier and 9.1% less than a year earlier. More important, it’s the lowest stocks of frozen beef since July 2005. FULL STORY »

Cattle Outlook: Futures Contracts Move Lower

The average price of choice beef at retail during April was $4.44 per pound. That was up 13.2 cents from March and 16.7 cents higher than April 2009. FULL STORY »

Hog Outlook: Losses In Financial Markets Hurt Commodity Futures Contracts

The average price of pork in grocery stores during April was $2.919 per pound. That was up 0.5 cents from March and also half a penny higher than April 2009. FULL STORY »

Cattle Outlook: Beef Exports Up, Lower Beef Cutouts

International trade has been a big boost to U.S. beef prices this year. During the first quarter of 2010, U.S. beef exports were up 24.7% and imports were down 18.6% compared to a year earlier. January-March exports equaled 7.7% of U.S. beef production and imports equaled 9.2% of production.

Hog Outlook: Pork Exports Up, Slaughter Down

U.S. pork exports during March were up 0.2% and pork imports were down 3.4% compared to a year earlier. During the first quarter of 2010, pork exports were up 1.3% and imports were down 3.1%. We started the year expecting 2010 pork exports to total 10% more than in 2009.

Cattle Outlook: Steer Cascass Weights 17 Pounds Lighter Than A Year Ago

The financial crisis in Greece has created a lot of jitters in world markets, including here in the U.S. One important byproduct is that the U.S. dollar has strengthened, which is not good news for U.S. exporters. FULL STORY »

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