LIVESTOCK, POULTRY, AND DAIRY: The forecast for 2011 total meat production is raised from last month reflecting higher beef production. Large cattle placements and larger cow slaughter, due in part to drought in the Southern Plains, is reflected in an increase in the beef production forecast. However, forecasts for pork and poultry are reduced from last month as higher forecast grain prices are expected to trim hog weight gains and put additional pressure on broiler producers. USDA’s Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report to be released June 24 will provide an indication of producer farrowing intentions for the remainder of the year. For 2012, meat production forecasts are reduced as higher forecast feed costs pressure hog weights and slow the expected recovery of the poultry sector. Higher feed prices are expected to slow feedlot placements as producers keep cattle on forage longer. The egg production forecast for 2011 is raised on stronger second half production, but the forecast for 2012 is reduced on higher feed prices and less demand for hatching eggs.
Export forecasts for red meat and poultry are raised from last month. Beef exports for 2011 are forecast higher on strength in a number of markets and expected improvements in exports to Mexico. Pork, broiler, and turkey exports were larger than expected in the first quarter and the forecasts for the remainder of 2011 are raised. Beef and turkey exports are raised for 2012, but no changes are made to pork or broiler exports.
Cattle and broiler prices for 2011 are lowered from last month on weaker-than-expected demand but hog prices are unchanged. Broiler prices are lowered for 2012.
The milk production forecast for 2011 is raised. Producers are expected to continue to expand herds through the middle of the year and although herds may begin to decline toward the end of the year, cow numbers are expected to be above 2010. However, higher feed costs will impact profitability and the dairy cow inventory is expected to decline in 2012. Tighter feed supplies will also likely impact the rate of increase of milk per cow. As a result, the milk production forecast for 2012 is reduced from last month. Commercial exports are forecast higher for 2011 largely due to stronger expected cheese exports. However, imports of cheese and milk proteins have been stronger than expected and the import forecast for both 2011 and 2012 is raised.
Dairy product price forecasts are raised from last month. Butter supplies are tight and demand for cheese, nonfat dry milk (NDM), and whey are expected to support product prices. Class III and Class IV price forecasts are raised from last month in line with the increased product prices. The all milk price is forecast at $19.65 to $20.05 per cwt for 2011. Price forecasts for 2012 are also raised as the smaller production increase is expected to support higher product and Class prices. The all milk price is forecast at $17.75 to $18.05 per cwt for 2012.