LIVESTOCK, POULTRY, AND DAIRY: The forecasts for total meat production in 2015 and 2016 are reduced from last month. Beef production is lowered for 2015 due to a slower pace of fed cattle marketings and consequently, lower steer and heifer slaughter. However, as the pace of marketings is slower, carcass weights are expected to be heavier, providing a slight counterbalance to lower slaughter. For 2016, lower expected cattle placements during late 2015 will result in lower slaughter and beef production in mid-2016. However, there is a slight offset from higher expected carcass weights early in the year. Pork production is raised for 2015 on the pace of slaughter in November and early December. No change is made to 2016. USDA will release its Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report on December 23, providing an indication of producers’ hog production intentions into 2016. Broiler production is lowered for both 2015 and 2016 as hatchery data points to slower growth in broiler production. Egg production is lowered in 2015 based on recent production data, but hatchery data supports a slightly higher production forecast for early 2016.
Beef imports for 2015 and 2016 are reduced to reflect the pace to date and weakening prices for processing beef. Beef exports for 2015 and 2016 are unchanged. Pork imports are unchanged but export forecasts for 2015 and 2016 are reduced as the strength of the dollar is limiting export competitiveness. Broiler and turkey exports for 2015 and 2016 are unchanged from last month.
Cattle and hog prices for 2015 are lowered from last month. A combination of weaker-than-expected packer demand and relatively large supplies of cattle and hogs are expected to pressure prices. Cattle prices are reduced for all of 2016 and hog prices are lowered for early 2016. Broiler prices are raised for 2015 on current price movements, but are unchanged for 2016. Turkey prices for 2015 are reduced on current prices, but are unchanged for 2016. Egg prices are lowered for the end of 2015 and into early 2016, reflecting recent price movements.
The milk production forecasts for 2015 and 2016 are reduced from last month as growth in milk per cow in 2015 and 2016 is slowed. Fat basis imports are reduced for 2015 on slower butter imports; on a skim-solids basis, imports are unchanged. No change is made to 2016 imports. Fat basis exports are unchanged for 2015 but are lowered for 2016 as global supplies of dairy products are expected to remain large and sales of cheese are expected to be pressured. On a skim-solids basis, exports are lowered for 2015 as lactose and whey protein concentrates sales to date are limiting exports, and weaker expected sales of cheese and lactose in 2016 will dampen skim-solids export growth in 2016.
Butter prices for remainder of 2015 and early 2016 are raised as prices have remained stronger than expected into early December. Cheese prices are lowered slightly for 2015 and 2016 based on current price movements and expected larger domestic supplies. The nonfat dry milk (NDM) prices are reduced for 2015 and 2016 as domestic and international supplies are expected to pressure prices. Whey prices are unchanged from last month. Class III prices are unchanged for 2015 and 2016 as the cheese price change was small. Class IV prices are raised for 2015 due to the stronger forecast butter price which more than offsets the lower NDM price. The 2016 Class IV price is lowered as the NDM price forecast is reduced. The all milk price is raised to $17.05 to $17.15 per cwt for 2015 and lowered to $15.95 to $16.75 per cwt for 2016.