Poultry Industry News

USDA-WASDE FORECAST #582 October 11th 2018


Corn and soybean crops will be the second largest ever but will be harvested during a time of uncertainty regarding previously projected, anticipated and actual export volumes. The USDA projections of ending stocks and hence prices for corn and soybeans take into account current announced tariffs on U.S. products but do not reflect predicted or threatened tariffs, intensification or unlikely resolution of trade conflicts.


The projection of the corn harvest was raised 0.3 percent from the September WASDE Report to 14,778 million bushels consistent with the reality that 93 percent of the crop is mature and 34 percent has been harvested. The projection for 2018 can be compared to the 2017 harvest of 14,577 million bushels and is down only 2.4 percent from the 2016 record harvest of 15,148 million bushels. The "Ethanol and Byproducts" category was retained at 5,650 m. bushels and exports were raised 75 m bushels to 2,475 million bushels. "Feed and Residual" was lowered by 25 m. bushels to 5,550 million bushels. Ending stocks will increase 2.2 percent to 1,813 m. bushels. The projected USDA range in farm price was unchanged over a range to 300 to 400 cents per bushel. At 13H00 on October 11th CME quotations for December 2018 and March 2019 corn were 397 cents and 381 cents per bushel respectively.



Weekly Broiler Production and Prices


Chick Placements

The October 10th edition of the USDA Broiler Hatchery Report confirmed that a total of 216.1 million eggs were set during the week ending October 6th approximately the same as the corresponding week in 2017. A total of 163.3 million day-old chicks was placed among the 19 major broiler-producing states during the week ending October 6th. This was two percent lower than the corresponding week in 2017. Total chick placements for the U.S. amounted to 170.7 million. Average hatchability was 77.2 percent for eggs set three weeks earlier. Broiler chick placements for 2018 through October 6th amounted to 7.34 billion, 1.0 percent higher than YTD 2017.

Broiler Production

For the processing week ending October 6th 167.5 million broilers were processed at an average live weight of 6.32 lbs. (6.25 lbs. last week) and a nominal yield of 76.0 percent. The number of broilers processed was 1.0 percent less than the corresponding processing week in 2017. Processed (RTC) broiler production for the week attained 810.8 million lbs. (368,565 metric tons), 3.9 percent more than in the corresponding week in 2017. Production of RTC for 2018 to date attained 30.34 million lbs. (13.79 million metric tons), 0.7 percent more than the corresponding period in 2017.


Weekly Turkey Production and Prices


Poult Production and Placement:

The September 17th edition of the USDA Turkey Hatchery Report, issued monthly, documented 27.1 million eggs in incubators on September 1st 2018 (28.7 million eggs on August 1st 2018) down 6.8 percent (1.9 million eggs) from September 1st 2017. A total of 24.0 million poults were hatched during August 2018 (25.7 million in July 2018) and down 3.3 percent from August 2017.

A total of 23.3 million poults were placed on farms in the U.S. in August 2018, (25.7 million in July 2018) and down 4.2 percent (1.0 million poults) from August 2017. This suggests disposal of 0.75 million hen poults or 6.2 percent of hen poults hatched during August 2018 or 3.1 percent of the total hatch.

For the twelve-month period September 2017 through August 2018, 284.8 million poults were hatched and 246.8 million were placed. This suggests disposal of 17.6 million hen poults over the period representing 12.4 percent of hen poults hatched or 6.2 percent of all poults hatched.

USDA will release the next monthly report on October 16th.




According to the October 11th 2018 WASDE Report #582, 81.8 million acres of corn will be harvested in 2018 to produce 14.78 Billion bushels. The soybean crop is projected to attain 4.69 Billion bushels from 88.2 million acres harvested. The levels of production for the two commodities is based on revised projections of yield and acreage harvested. Ending stocks were revised based on anticipated domestic use and exports.


Quarterly corn and soybean stocks were estimated by USDA in a release on September 28th to total 2.14 Billion bushels (14.7 percent of the 2017 harvest) and 0.44 Billion bushels (10.0 percent of 2017 harvest) respectively. Of the “old soy crop” 0.10 Billion bushels are held as on-farm storage, up 15 percent from the corresponding period in 2017. Off-farm storage is up 58 percent to 0.34 billion bushels. Disappearance from June to August was 0.78 Billion bushels, up 18 percent from the corresponding period in 2017. This reflects accelerated shipments in anticipation of increased tariffs imposed by China.


The following quotations for the months as indicated were posted by the CME at 10H00 EDT on October 12th together with values for the corresponding months in parentheses indicating only minor changes in price after firming during the previous week.




Corn (cents per bushel)

Dec.’18   369   (368)        

March ‘19 381  (380)

Soybeans (cents per bushel)

Nov. ’18  863  (867)*   

Jan. ’19      890  (880)      

Soybean meal ($ per ton)

Oct.  ‘18  313  (315)*

Jan.  ’19     318  (318)

*values reflect 2017 harvest


Changes in the price of corn, soybeans and soybean meal were:-


COMMODITY                                                      CHANGE FROM PAST WEEK

Corn:                     Dec. quotation down 1 cent per Bu.                (-0.3 percent)

Soybeans:              Nov. quotation down 4 cents per Bu.             (-0.5 percent)

Soybean Meal:        Oct.  quotation down $2 per ton                      (-0.6 percent)                                


  • For each 10 cent per bushel change in corn:-


The cost of egg production would change by 0.45 cent per dozen


The cost of broiler production would change by 0.25 cent per pound live weight


  • For each $10 per ton change in the price of soybean meal:-


The cost of egg production would change by 0.40 cent per dozen


The cost of broiler production would change by 0.25 cent per pound live weight


Markets were essentially unaffected by release of the October WASDE. There is no immediate prospect of resolving the trade dispute with China before the 2018 harvest is completed. Unproductive sub-cabinet level discussions in Washington in early September and imposition of additional tariffs on imports on September 24th have raised tensions in China which appears to be unmoved in its determination to resist U.S. tariffs. The Administration has announced that negotiations are underway to arrange a meeting between President Trump and Premier Xi in late November.


Despite claims by the Administration in August to the contrary the E.U. will not be a viable alternative to China with regard to export volume for corn and soybeans.. Imports of soybeans will be limited by the inherent reluctance of the trading bloc to import GM products. Five nations in the E.U. have an outright ban on introduction of GM ingredients and any food product marketed in the E.U. would have to declare GM content on the label. 


The financial future for row-crop farmers appears bleak despite the promise of $12 billion as “short-term” compensation. Recent comments from the USDA suggest that this value may be trimmed. Farmers will not be placated by the promise of E-15 ethanol since the logistic problems of delivery to consumers and legal challenges will delay any positive price benefit. The loss inflicted on farmers by the trade war with China is a gain for livestock producers who will benefit from lower feed costs. Of course the hog and poultry industries have experienced higher costs for a decade as a result of the RFS, a gift which keeps on giving. The RFS is a boon to Midwest politicians, corn growers and ethanol refiners at the expense of anyone in the U.S. who eats or uses any form of transport.



See the WASDE posting summarizing the October 11th USDA-WASDE Report #582 under the STATISTICS tab documenting price projections and quantities of commodities to be produced, used and exported from the 2018 harvest.



U.S. Broiler and Turkey Exports for January-August 2018.


Data for January-August 2018 indicates a moderate increase in export of broiler parts in comparison to the corresponding eight months of 2017. Total broiler exports for January-August 2018 attained 2,094,897 metric tons, 3.0 percent more than the corresponding period in 2017 (2,033,204 metric tons) and total value improved by 5.2 percent to $2,147 million ($2,040 million).


During January-August 2018 the National Chicken Council (NCC), citing USDA-FAS data, documented exports of 2,255,087 metric tons of chicken parts and other forms (whole and prepared) valued at $2,426 million with a weighted average unit value of $1,076 per metric ton, 4.8 percent higher in value compared to the first eight months of 2017 ($1,048 per m. ton).


The NCC breakdown of chicken exports by proportion and unit price for each broiler category for January-August 2018 compared with the equivalent months in 2017 (with the unit price in parentheses) comprised:-


  • Chicken parts                          95.9%;  Unit value $1,004 per metric ton  ($978)
  • Prepared chicken                      2.8%;  Unit value $3,567 per metric ton ($3,532)
  • Whole chicken                          1.3%;  Unit value $1,036 per metric ton  ($1,024) 

The following table prepared from USDA data circulated by the USAPEEC, compares values for poultry meat exports in January-August 2018 with corresponding figures for 2017:-




In the October 8th edition of MondayLine USAPEEC expressed relief at the conclusion of a trilateral agreement between the USA, Mexico and Canada to replace NAFTA. USAPEEC made representations the Office of the Trade Representative to effect changes to benefit broiler exports.


For turkeys, Canada has agreed to provide the U.S. and other member of the WTO access equivalent to no less than 3.5 percent of Canadian turkey production in the previous year.  This will allow the U.S. to export an additional 1,000 metric tons of turkey products annually for the next ten years beyond the current levels of access.


With respect to U.S. eggs and products, the new tariff rate quota is 10 million dozen eggs and egg-equivalent products annually growing one percent for an additional ten years.  This is in addition to the 21.4 million dozen World Trade Organization quota.


It is emphasized that the USMCA will be subject to ratification by the legislatures or all three participating nations.  It is unlikely that the USMCA will be considered in the current Congress.


For chicken the new tariff rate quota is 57,000 metric tons by year six of the Agreement growing one percent for an additional ten years.  The U.S. will still be eligible to export up to 39,844 metric tons under Canada’s World Trade Organization (WTO) tariff regimen according to the October 5th edition of International Trade as quoted in the October 5th National Chicken Council Washington Report.  The U.S. will continue to benefit from access to the broiler hatching-egg market in Canada.  In terms of the Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement U.S. will be able to provide up to 21 percent of Canadian domestic production of broiler hatching eggs.


Nutriad Conducts Training Session in Egypt


Approximately 75 poultry health professionals from Middle Eastern nations attended the Nutriad MycoGut Academy in Cairo.  The three-day event included class room and laboratory sessions.


The purpose of the training exercise was to provide attendees with information on enteritis and mycotoxicosis.


Erik Visser, CEO of Nutriad noted, “The MycoGut Academy is another example of how Nutriad interacts with customers and distributors transferring knowledge and addressing real live production challenges.”


Recall of Nine Tons of Deli Products


Ukrop’s Homestyle Foods announced the recall of approximately nine tons of ready-to-eat meat and poultry in the form of deli-sliced product due to potential adulteration with Listeria monocytogenes.


The deli items were produced from September 14th through October 3rd, 2018 and were shipped to retail locations in Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia.


The potential contamination arises from incorporation of meat products supplied by Johnson County Hams subject to an October 3rd recall by the FSIS. Fortunately there have been no confirmed reports of illness as the result of consuming the implicated products. 


CHICK-NEWS has previously commented on the indirect effect of a contaminated ingredient supplied to other processors to be incorporated in ready-to-eat foods.  Previous examples including peanuts contaminated with Salmonella used to manufacture peanut butter, infected spices added to foods resulting in STEC and Salmonella infection of chicken used to prepare salads.



Prospects for U.S. Trade Talks with China?


Following a lack of response by China to U.S. demands to cease state support for domestic manufacturers and exporters, theft of intellectual property and coercive business practices, China and the U.S. embarked on a mutually destructive series of tariffs.  On August 24th the U.S. imposed a 10 percent tariff on $200 billion worth of Chinese items.  This followed a breakdown in negotiations between the nations.


Larry Kudlow, Director of the National Economic Council suggested that negotiators could meet in Buenos Aires in December during the Group of Twenty meeting.  He emphasized that U.S. officials are ready to commence negotiations if China reciprocates.


Chi Tinkai recently disclosed that China “is ready to make a deal and is willing to take steps to reduce the U.S. trade deficit with China.”  He maintained that U.S. demands “keep changing” although contemporary press reports do not confirm this allegation.  The U.S. clearly stated demands relating to the major issues in contention.  Satisfying the U.S. conditions for resumption of normal trade would require major changes in the economy of China which would impact future growth plans and objectives.

The White House announced on October 11th that there are plans for President Trump to meet with Premier Xi in late November to attempt to ratchet down the trade dispute. This follows a speech delivered by Vice-President Pence suggesting a shift from discussion with China to confrontation, a position favored by trade Advisor Dr. Peter Navarro. Treasury secretary Stephen Mnuchin and National Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow have for months urged negotiations and de-escalation of trade tensions.


USDA Plans Hurricane Michael Relief


According to a USDA release on October 12th Vice President Mike Pence and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue were briefed today on the potential impacts of Hurricane Michael as it relates to agriculture and rural communities. Participating in the briefing via conference line were Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam and Georgia Commissioner of Agriculture Gary Black

Following the briefing, which took place at the U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Dr..Sonny Perdue commented “I am proud of the work being done by the USDA family as they continue to assist during Hurricane Michael. Our team will continue to be there for our farmers, ranchers, and those affected to get them the aid they need. As Vice President Pence said today, the entire federal government is there ‘in the city and on the farm to achieve a full recovery,’”


U.S. Export Programs to be Impacted by Delayed Farm Bill


Following expiry of 2014 Farm Bill on September 30, 2018, a total of 39 farm programs became inactive. These include the Foreign Market Development program which in part funds the  USAPEEC.


Passage of the 2018 Farm Bill will have to be delayed until 2019 since the 115th Congress will not meet until after the November 6th Midterm election.


The USDA has indicated that it will not fund programs until January and will not support staffing and office costs.



Toll from Hurricane Florence Becoming Apparent


As floodwaters have receded in both North and South Carolina, the cost of Hurricane Florence is becoming apparent.  The hog industry lost 5,500 animals.  Combined losses in the broiler and turkey industries in North Carolina amounted to 3.5 million birds with 1.7 million dead broilers announced by a major integrator in the state.


Considerable losses were incurred through plant closures and related disruption in the broiler, turkey and swine industries. Only six hog-waste lagoons were damaged resulting in minimal environmental impact.  


Preliminary estimates by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Affairs places total losses at $1.1 billion with 80 percent of this estimate due to damage to row crops.  In North Carolina, tobacco and sweet potatoes were destroyed given that Hurricane Florence coincided with harvest in an area of high density of these crops.  South Carolina lost cotton, tobacco and peanuts.


Environmentalism and Welfare Issues Sink New Proposed Broiler Project in New Zealand


Tegel a major broiler producer in New Zealand recently withdrew a proposal to establish a 1.3 million-capacity broiler farm at a site in Arapahoe on North Island, New Zealand.  In October 2017 Tegel submitted a joint application to the Northland Regional Council and the Kaipara District Council to establish a unit with 32 houses to grow broilers. Following extensive opposition directed to both councils, hearings were suspended in accordance with a request from Tegel.  During September the Investment Office refused the application to purchase land for the project and Tegel accordingly withdrew the application for consent to proceed.


Opposition to the project was concerted and well organized by diverse groups citing considerations of welfare and environmental impact, both important considerations in New Zealand.


Some business entities expressed disappointment in the decision. The project would have created both direct and secondary employment although in making the decision to deny the application, economic considerations were ignored.


Evaluation of Emerging Salmonella Strains in Minnesota Hogs


According to a University of Minnesota release from the Center for Animal Health and Food Safety, a study is under way to evaluate emerging strains of Salmonella with specific reference to antimicrobial resistance.  Dr. Ehud Elnekave a postdoctoral fellow with the center is applying next-generation sequencing to examine the DNA of Salmonella isolates collected from swine throughout the state.  Two genetically distinct groups have been identified within emerging strains of Salmonella with one isolate carrying genes for antimicrobial resistance.  This strain has common characteristics with a multi-drug resistant strain studied in Europe.


Dr. Elnekave is cooperating with other research groups investigating the genomes of Salmonella isolated from livestock and humans in the U.S. and in other nations. He commented “Sharing our findings can help researchers and decision-makers understand if we are dealing with the same pathogens in different locations.”  He added, “If these pathogens are being transmitted worldwide, we can anticipate pathways and prevent their spread.” 


Whole genome sequencing is necessary to establish relationships among antibiotic-resistant pathogens and to establish mechanisms of transmission between and among livestock and humans.



BV Science Recruiting


BV Science, Inc. is a new US corporation formed in 2017. Formed by the collaboration of South American Vetanco S.A. and European Dr Bata Limited, BV Science, Inc. represents their combined science, technology and products in North America. In their 30 year history, they’ve developed a line of natural products that serve as natural solutions to producing animal protein without antibiotics. For more information, look at our website www.bvscience.com .

We are ready to introduce our first products to the US poultry market and we need remarkable sales persons to help us do that.

If you have experience in the US broiler, laying hen or turkey businesses, we would like to talk to you. We want self-starters with a network of contacts in the industry. We need you to have some sales experience in the industry. Also valuable would be experience managing others. You could be asked to travel anywhere in the US or simply a region. You can remain living where you are as you’ll fly to most destinations. Plan on traveling 60-70% of the time.

Come grow with us in this outstanding opportunity with new products from a new company. We would love to talk to you.     Dave Zacek, President/CEO

Send your resume & a letter about yourself to info@bvscience.com.


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Dr. Simon M. Shane
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