1. Boxed Beef Price Sets New Record ($264.74) On Thursday Before Falling Friday
Choice boxed beef fell on Friday to hit $262.69. The $1.83 fall brought the 27-day average price to $259.01. Select boxed beef also saw a decrease of 97 cents to hit $250.52, bringing the 27-day average price to $248.77.
2. 16 States Have Been Affected By Bird Flu, 29 Million Birds Lost
The Avian Bird Flu outbreak so far has affected sixteen states with USDA-AMS Agriculture Analytics Division estimating as of May 8th 28,700,000 total birds lost.
3. Record Protein Production Projected Even Higher
The WAOB is projecting total red meat and poultry production at 95.583 billion pounds, up 299 million pounds. If realized, this will be the highest in history. This will keep a ceiling on higher prices.
4. Cattle Prices Projected Higher In 2015 & 2016
Slaughter steers averaged $154.56/cwt live in 2014. They are looking for prices to be $4-12 higher this year and about the same in 2016 as this year.
5. World Does NOT Have Record Low Cattle Inventory
The USDA recently released data for the world’s cattle inventory and selected countries, estimating the world’s cattle inventory to be 964,640,000 head. This is a drop of more than 29 million head from 2014, making this the world's lowest cattle inventory in 42 years (since 1974).
6. Beef Consumption Forecast For 2016 Lowest Since 1952
USDA is forecasting 2016 per capita beef consumption at 53.9 pounds of retail weight; that will be the lowest since 1952.
7. Prices Continue To Outdo Expectations
Cash fed and feeder cattle prices continue to outdo expectations even perplex many in the business. The insistence of bearish fundamentals or concerns with plentiful supplies of pork and poultry, larger fed cattle supplies and heavier carcass weights is not drawing away excellent early pasture conditions which should limit feedlot replacement activity, along with tight feeder supplies.
8. Monthly Cow Prices Have Been Over $100 For 13 Consecutive Months
Monthly cow prices surpassed $100/cwt. for the first time in history in March 2014. Monthly cow prices have remained higher than $100/cwt. for the past 13 months. The highest monthly cow price in history is $121/cwt. (August 2014).
9. U.S. On Pace To Import 3.5 Billion Pounds Of Beef In 2015
U.S. beef imports are off to a blistering start in 2015. The U.S. has already imported more than 875 million pounds of beef through March. This is 47% higher than 2014 compared to the same time period. Additionally, U.S. beef imports in 2014 were up 31% from 2013.
10. Cattle Weights Set To Break All 2014 Records
Cattle weights in 2015 have been 27 pounds, on average, higher than 2014. The most current weekly USDA data shows cattle weights at 1,339 pounds, up a whopping 40 pounds from the year prior.