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2021 Broiler outlook update: Production rebound and elevated prices

This is the second of three quarterly updates to our 2021 outlook for Canada’s broiler sector published in January. Over the last few weeks, we’ve updated our outlooks for grains, oilseeds and pulses, dairy and cattle and hog sectors.

As life gains normalcy and the economic recovery deepens, Canada’s broiler sector continues to shake off the effects of COVID-19. The big story in 2021 has been the recovery of pre-pandemic levels of broiler production and consumption. The next quarter shows an improved outlook with consumption buoyed throughout the summer and expected to grow further. Supply continues to lag 2019 levels due to the pandemic and other factors, but monthly slaughters in July recorded double-digit growth over the 2020 level, which was heavily constrained due to COVID.

That’s some good news for a sector still grappling with high feed costs due to weather concerns and strong demand for grains and oilseeds. While soymeal and canola meal prices have stagnated compared to prices of soybeans, meal prices are expected to remain above their 5-year average

The grain and oilseed harvests are currently underway in North America, with plenty of uncertainty on the size of the 2021-22 crop. In Canada, crop production is one of two stories: drought conditions in the west and above-average crop production in Eastern and Central Canada due to timely rains. Global production estimates in the coming months will be important to monitor for corn, soybeans, and wheat to gain insights on the direction into the feed prices trend.

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