Extent of lower broiler production in 2012 depends on US economy, competing protein prices, and export demand, USDA reports
USDA is currently forecasting broiler production in 2013 to be just under 1 percent less estimated output in 2012, but the "amount and duration of the decrease" will depend on the health of the domestic economy, the level of competing protein prices, and the strength of exports demand, according to the "Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry Outlook" report released this week from the department’s Economic Research Service (ERS).
Earlier this month, USDA revised upward its broiler production forecast for 2013 as analysts expect lower feed prices to lead to more broiler pounds. ERS noted that total broiler production has been "boosted" by heavier average weights during six of the first eight months of this year. For January through August 2012, the average weight was 5.82 pounds, 0.6 percent more than during the first eight months of last year.