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WASDE: Forecast For Total Red Meat & Poultry Production Raised On Higher Beef & Poultry Production

LIVESTOCK, POULTRY, AND DAIRY: The 2018 forecast for total red meat and poultry production is raised from last month as higher beef and poultry production forecasts more than offset lower pork production. The increase in beef production reflects a faster pace of steer and heifer slaughter. However, this is slightly offset by lower carcass weights. The pork production forecast is reduced as smaller expected fourth-quarter hog slaughter more than offsets heavier carcass weights. Broiler and turkey production forecasts are raised from the previous month on the current pace of slaughter and hatchery data. The egg production forecast is lowered on recent hatchery data. For 2019, the total red meat and poultry forecast is lowered from last month on lower expected beef and broiler production. Beef production is forecast lower, reflecting slightly lighter carcass weights in early 2019. The pork production forecast is unchanged from last month. USDA will release its Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report on December 20th, which will provide an indication of producers’ farrowing intentions for the first half of 2019. 
 
Broiler production is reduced as hatchery data points towards slowing production growth. Turkey production is unchanged from the previous month. Egg production is forecast lower for 2019. 
 
Beef import forecasts for 2018 and 2019 are reduced from the previous month on lower expected exportable supplies of processing grade beef from Australia. No change is
made to beef export forecasts for 2018 and 2019. The 2018 pork export forecast is unchanged from the previous month, but the export forecast for 2019 is raised on
continued strong global demand for U.S. pork. The broiler export forecast is raised for 2018 on recent trade data. For 2019, the broiler export forecast is raised as competitively priced U.S. broiler meat is expected to support global demand. Turkey export forecasts are raised for 2018 and 2019 on recent trade data. The cattle price forecast for 2018 is raised on recent price strength, but the 2019 cattle price forecast is unchanged from the previous month. The hog price forecast for 2018 is
raised on recent demand strength and as this strength is expected to carry into next year, price forecasts are raised for 2019. The broiler price forecast is raised for 2018, but no change is made to the 2019 forecast. Turkey and egg price forecasts are lowered for 2018 on current price movements, but no change is made to the 2019 price forecasts. The 2018 and 2019 milk production forecasts are lowered from the previous month on slower growth in milk per cow and lower cow numbers. Relatively weak returns are expected to result in a smaller 2019 cow herd. Fat basis import forecasts are raised for 2018 and 2019, primarily as strong domestic demand supports higher imports of butter. Fat basis export forecasts are raised for both 2018 and 2019 on higher sales of butteroil and anhydrous milk fat (AMF). On a skim-solids basis, the 2018 export forecast is raised on higher expected sales of skim milk/nonfat dry milk powder (SMP/NDM), but the 2019 export forecast is unchanged as higher SMP/NDM sales are largely offset by weaker exports of lactose.
 
The price forecast for cheese is lowered for 2018 on current price weakness and continued high stock levels, but the forecasts for butter, NDM, and whey are unchanged.
For 2019, cheese and butter price forecasts are reduced while the NDM price forecast is unchanged. The 2019 whey price forecast is raised from last month as stocks remain relatively low. The 2018 and 2019 Class III price forecasts are lowered from last month on lower cheese prices. The 2018 and 2019 Class IV prices are unchanged at the midpoint of the range. The all milk price is forecast lower at $16.15 to $16.25 per cwt for 2018 and $16.40 to $17.20 per cwt for 2019.