report, to be released on July 20 will provide an indication of the 2012 calf crop
and producers’ intentions regarding heifer retention. Beef production is reduced slightly for 2013
as the earlier placement of calves in 2012 results in a small adjustment to early 2013 marketings.
Cattle carcass weights are raised for the first part of 2012, but placement of lighter-weight cattle
in feedlots and the higher forecast cost of feed are expected to dampen weight growth in 2012
and 2013. Egg production is raised slightly for 2012 as higher prices support slightly faster
growth, but the forecast for 2013 is reduced as higher feed prices pressure producer returns.
Beef imports are raised for 2012 as demand for processing beef remains strong and a
strengthening of the U.S. dollar has helped support imports from Oceania. Beef exports are
reduced from last month as exports have slowed. Strong pork exports in April support an
increase in the 2012 forecast. Pork imports are unchanged. Broiler and turkey exports for 2012
are raised based on current export demand. Beef, pork, and turkey trade forecasts for 2013 are
unchanged from last month but the forecast of broiler exports is raised on expectations of
continued strong demand.
Cattle, broiler, and turkey price forecasts 2012 are lowered from last month, but hog prices are
raised. Egg prices are raised as current prices have been stronger than expected and supplies
are expected to be tighter in the later part of the year. For 2013, the cattle price is unchanged,
but hog, broiler, and turkey prices are raised from last month on tighter supplies. The egg price
forecast is raised as the production forecast is reduced.