Poultry Industry Statistics and Reports

Turkey Week


Weekly Turkey Production and Prices April 2nd 2021


Poult Production and Placement:

The March 16th 2021 edition of the USDA Turkey Hatchery Report, issued monthly, documented 27.0 million eggs in incubators on March 1st 2021 (26.2 million eggs on February 1st 2021) and down 3.4 percent (0.9 million eggs) from March 1st 2020.


A total of 21.4 million poults were hatched during February 2021 (21.5 million in January 2021), and representing a decrease of 5.2 percent (1.1 million poults) from February 2020.


A total of 19.6 million poults were placed on farms in the U.S. in February 2021, (19.8 million in January 2021), and 5.0 percent less than in February 2020. This suggests disposal of 1.8 million poults during the month (1.7 million in January 2021). Assuming all tom poults were placed, up to 16.8 percent of February-hatched hen poults or 8.4 percent of all February-hatched poults may not have been reared. This is an unsubstantiated estimate in a fluctuating demand for processed toms and hens in a COVID-affected market. (See relative numbers of hen and tom poults processed under Production Data below).


For the twelve-month period March 2020 through February 2021 inclusive, 272.3 million poults were hatched and 249.4 million were placed. This suggests disposal of 23.0 million poults. Assuming all tom poults were placed, (representing a broad assumption as above), 16.9 percent of hen poults or 8.4 percent of all poults hatched during the period were not placed.


To be updated in mid-April 2021 following release of monthly USDA data


Turkey Production:

The April 2nd 2021 edition of the USDA Turkey Market News Report (Vol. 68: No.13) confirmed the following provisional data for turkeys slaughtered under Federal inspection:-


Broiler Week


Weekly Broiler Production and Prices, April 2nd 2020.


Chick Placements.

The Broiler Hatchery Report released on March 31st 2021 confirmed that a total of 237.0 million eggs were set during the week ending March 27th 2021, fractionally lower than the corresponding week of the previous year and 0.1 percent (0.3 million eggs) less than the previous week.


A total of 178.4 million day-old chicks were placed among the 19 major broiler-producing states during the week ending March 27th 2021. Total chick placements for the U.S. amounted to 187.6 million, two percent less than the corresponding week in 2020 and 3.3 percent  (6.0 million chicks) less than the previous week. Claimed average hatchability was 79.9 percent for eggs set three weeks earlier, (80.9 percent for the previous week). Cumulative placements for the period January 2nd 2021 through March 27th 2021 amounted to 2.24 billion chicks, two percent lower than the corresponding period in 2020. The 5 million drop in chick placements during the week of March 13th was attributed to weather-related disruption in egg collection and hatchery operations in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi in mid-February.


Broiler Production

According to the April 1st U.S. Market News for the processing week ending March 27th 20211, 166.0 million broilers were processed during the past week (previous week 166.5 million) at an average live weight of 6.14 lbs. (6.30 lbs. last week) and a nominal yield of 76 percent. The number of broilers processed was 2.0 percent less than the corresponding processing week in 2020. Processed (RTC) broiler production for the week was 791.2 million lbs. (359,636 metric tons), (797.1 million lbs. last week), <0.1 percent more than the corresponding processing week in 2020. In 2021 Processed (RTC) production attained 100.7 million lbs. (4,577,286 metric tons), 3.4 percent less than YTD 2020.


1. USDA Broiler Market News Report #13 Delayed.


Broiler Prices

The USDA National Composite Weighted Wholesale price on April 2nd 2021 was up 5.4 cent per lb. from the previous week to 92.4 cents per lb., compared to 66.7 cents per lb. during the corresponding week of 2020; 86.7 cents per lb. for March 2021 and 83.0 cents per lb. for the three-year average. The industry still is impacted by the contraction in the food service segment following imposition of COVID-19 restrictions.


The USDA Southern States (SS) benchmark prices in cents per lb. (rounded to nearest cent) as documented in the Broiler Market News Reports March 31st 2021 are tabulated with a comparison with the previous week:-


Meat Projection


Updated USDA-ERS Poultry Meat Projection for 2021.


On March 15th 2021 the USDA-Economic Research Service released updated production and consumption data with respect to broilers and turkeys, covering actual 2019 a projection for 2020 and a forecast for 2021.


Broiler RTC production in 2021 was updated from the February 2021 report to reflect a 0.4 percent increase over 2020 to 20.355 million metric tons RTC (44,781 million lbs.). Per capita consumption in 2021 will be unchanged compared to 2020 at 43.7 kg. (96.1 lbs.). Exports should represent 16.2 percent of RTC production in 2021 attaining 3.291 million metric tons (7,240 million lbs.) representing both RTC and feet.


The projection takes into account forecast exports to China with imports of 512,587 metric tons of chicken products including feet during 2020 valued at $732 million.


Turkey production for 2021 compared to 2020 was reduced by 0.9 percent to 2.586 million metric tons RTC, (5,690 million lbs.). Per capita consumption is projected at 7.1 kg. (15.6 lb.) during 2021, 1.4 percent less than 2019 despite promotions and introduction of further-processed items. Export volume for 2021 is expected to attain to 0.260 million metric tons (572 million lbs.) Values for production and consumption of RTC turkey in 2021 are considered to be realistic, given the prevailing economy, lower poult placements, weekly production levels and inventories.


The export projections do not allow for a breakdown in trade relations with existing partners including China nor the emergence of catastrophic diseases including HPAI and vvND. Metric values for the broiler and turkey segments of the U.S. poultry meat industry are tabulated below:-







2021 Difference %

(forecast) 2020 to 2021


Production (m. metric tons)



20.355 +0.4

Consumption (kg per capita)



43.7 0

Exports (m. metric tons)



3.291 -1.8

Proportion of production (%)



16.2 -1.8


Production (m. metric tons)



2.586 -0.9

Consumption (kg per capita)



7.1 -1.4

Exports (m. metric tons)



0.260 0

Proportion of production (%)



10.1 +1.0


Source: Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook –March 15th 2020


 Subscribers are referred to the weekly updates of production and inventories of broilers and turkeys posted weekly on CHICK-NEWS and the review of monthly export data under the STATISTICS tab.


U.S. Meat Exports


U.S. Broiler and Turkey Exports, January 2021.


Total exports of bone-in broiler parts and feet in January 2021 attained 300,758 metric tons, (661,668 million lbs.) 6.2 percent more than in 2020 (283,323 metric tons). Total value of exports increased by 4.2 percent to $306 million ($293 million 2020).


Unit price is constrained by the fact that leg quarters comprise over 96 percent of exports except feet. Leg quarters represent a relatively low-value commodity lacking in pricing power. Exporters of commodities are subjected to competition from domestic production in importing nations. Generic products such as leg quarters are vulnerable to trade disputes and embargos based on real or contrived disease restrictions.


The extensive outbreak of African swine fever will sustain U.S. exports to Asia over the intermediate-term although China is rapidly increasing domestic hog production. All animal protein has risen in price as pork supply was restricted but will be reversed as supply is restored in 2021. The effect of increased demand from Viet Nam was apparent early in 2020. Disruption in ports and transport infrastructure due to the COVID-19 outbreak impacted exports to China during January and February 2020.


During January 2021 the National Chicken Council (NCC), citing USDA-FAS data, documented exports of 303,554 metric tons of chicken parts and other forms (whole and prepared) valued at $313.4 million with a weighted average unit value of $1,033 per metric ton, 1.7 percent lower in unit value compared to January 2020 ($1,051 per metric ton).







The March 9th 2021 USDA WASDE Report was basically unchanged from the February 2021 edition to reflect the 2021 season. This normal given uncertainties regarding the future crop that has yet to be planted. The USDA ERS will make changes to projected ending stocks in April and May depending on export trends and harvests in Brazil and in the Southern hemisphere. There was no change in either U.S. corn or soybean harvest areas from the February WASDE report but this may be altered subsequently by world prices and weather considerations. The corn acreage to be harvested is currently estimated at 82.5 million acres and soybeans will be harvested from 82.3 million acres.


The March 2021 WASDE estimate of corn yield was held at172.0 bushels per acre, (175.8 bushels per acre in 2020). The estimate of soybean yield was maintained at 50.2 bushels per acre. (50.7 bushels per acre in 2020)

The March 2021 USDA projection for the ending stock of corn was unchanged at 1,502 million bushels. Despite ongoing exports the ending stock for soybeans was held at 120 million bushels but may subsequently be downsized.


Projections for ending stocks of both corn and soybeans have influenced recent CME price quotations concurrently with increased exports in accordance with the needs of China less than compliance with the Phase-One trade agreement. The March 2021 WASDE projected the corn price to be $4.30 per bushel and soybeans at 1,115 cents per bushel.


It is accepted that projections are based on the assumption that China has sharply increased purchases partly to cover disruptions during the first quarter of 2020 by COVID-19. China booked substantial orders for corn and soybeans to be delivered through August for the 2019-2020 market year in addition to large quantities booked from September onwards for the 2020-2021 market year. Reports on volumes of commodities exports to China will be included in upcoming weekly editions of CHICK-NEWS and EGG-NEWS in subsequent mailings as data becomes available.



The corn harvest for 2021 projected in the March 2021 WASDE Report #610 is unchanged at 14,183 million bushels consistent with planting intentions.The projected 2021 harvest can be compared to 14,507 million bushels in 2020 and is 6.4 percent lower than the previous 2016 record harvest of 15,148 million bushels. The “Feed and Residual” category was held at 5,650 million bushels. The “Ethanol and Byproducts” category was maintained at 4,950 million bushels despite reduced domestic demand for E-10 due to COVID-19 restrictions and competition in the export markets. Corn exports were held at 2,600 million bushels in the face of intense competition from Brazil and Argentine and high world domestic coarse grain production relative to demand. Ending stocks were unchanged at 1,502 million bushels.


USDA Grain Stocks Report


The USDA quarterly Grain Stocks Report released on January 12th documents storage of commodities produced in the U.S. classified according to on-site and remote facilities including elevators and commercial installations. Quantities of corn and soybeans, the two major crops relevant to poultry production were:-


“Corn stored in all positions on December 1st 2020 totaled 11.3 billion bushels, down slightly from December 1st 2019. Of the total stocks, 7.05 billion bushels are stored on farms, down 1 percent from a year earlier. Off-farm stocks, at 4.28 billion bushels, are up 1 percent from a year ago. Indicated disappearance for September through November 2020 is 4.78 billion bushels, compared with 4.51 billion bushels during the same period last year”.


“Soybeans stored in all positions on December 1st 2020 totaled 2.93 billion bushels, down 10 percent from December 1st 2019. Soybean stocks stored on farms totaled 1.31 billion bushels, down 14 percent from a year ago. Off-farm stocks, at 1.62 billion bushels, are down 6 percent from last December. Indicated disappearance for September through November 2020 totaled 1.73 billion bushels, up 43 percent from the same period a year earlier.


USDA Agricultural Prices Report


THE USDA Agricultural Prices Report released November 30th posted October prices for agricultural commodities and expenditures.

 The USDA ERS detailed prices as follows:-


“The October Prices Received Index 2011 Base (Agricultural Production), at 88.8, decreased 0.2 percent from September but increased 3.3 percent from October 2019. At 87.7, the Crop Production Index is down 6.4 percent from last month but up 5.5 percent from October 2019. The Livestock Production Index, at 90.6, increased 7.7 percent from September, but is unchanged from October 2019. Producers received higher prices during October for milk, hogs, market eggs, and broilers but lower prices for potatoes, rice, dry beans, and sunflowers. In addition to prices, the indexes are influenced by the volume change of commodities producers market. In October, there was increased monthly movement for soybeans, corn, cotton, and calves and decreased marketing of cattle, milk, broilers, and grapes”.


“The October Prices Paid Index for Commodities and Services, Interest, Taxes, and Farm Wage Rates (PPITW), at 111.1, is up 0.7 percent from September 2020 and 0.6 percent from October 2019. Higher prices in October for complete feeds, feeder pigs, concentrates, and feed grains more than offset lower prices for diesel, other services, gasoline, and wage rates”.


Corn farmers received $3.41 per bushel in October 2020 compared to $3.80 per bushel in October 2019, down 11.4 percent.


Soybean farmers received $9.24 per bushel in October 2020 compared to $8.35 per bushel in October 2019, up 10.7 percent.


Egg farmers received 99.4 cents per dozen for table eggs in October 2020 compared to 66.3 cents per dozen in 2019, up 49.9 percent.


Broiler farmers received 31.5 cents per live lb. in October 2020 compared to 41 cents per live lb. in October 2019, down 23.2 percent.


Copyright © 2021 Simon M. Shane