This report represents information for the week ending March 22, 2019.

Market is mixed.  Total beef production for last week was down 2% compared to prior week and was down 2.3% versus same time last year.  Total headcount for last week was 593,000 as compared to 601,000 for the same week last year.  Live weights for last week were down 3 lbs from prior week and were down 11 lbs from same time last year.  Buying interest from spring activities has been picking up with spring officially kicking off this week.  Grilling activities tend to pick up over the coming weeks with retail advertising becoming heavier.  The lighter production the past few weeks is putting additional pressure on some cuts at a time that buying interest has been improved.  The severe weather the past few weeks has helped to hamper production and helping to keep the market more unsettled.

Grinds- Market is mostly steady.

Loins- Market is mixed.  Inventories vary between packers this week.  Buying activity has been improving for upcoming spring demand.

Rounds- Market is mostly steady.

Chucks- Market is mostly steady.  Export demand has been good and helping to move additional inventories.

Ribs- Market is steady to firmer.  Buying interest has been improved this week and keeping pressure on the market.

Market is firmer.  Total pork production for last week was down 3.3% compared to prior week but was up 1.6% versus same time last year.  Total headcount for last week was 2,452,000 as compared to 2,418,000 for the same week last year.  Live weights for last week were even with prior week and up 1 lb from prior week.  Buying activity from China has been strong coming into this week with Canada reporting a surge in demand from China.  This is putting upward pressure on their market with their product being priced at a premium to the US Domestic market.  US trade talks with China are reported as going very good and optimistic.  The swine virus outbreak in China has had an impact on their domestic herds and production.  The full extent is not known but China is the world’s largest consumer of pork products so any impact can be large.

Bellies- Market is firm.  The belly market has surged higher with very good buying demand.

Hams- Market is firm.  Buying demand for Easter is good and export interest is improved.

Loins- Market is firm.  Buying interest is very good and putting pressure on the market.

Butts- Market is firm.  Buying activity is good and export interest is improved.

Ribs- Market is firmer.  Buying interest for spring activities is stronger and putting pressure on the market.

Market is firmer.  Total headcount for last week was 160,746,000 as compared to 159,248,000 for the same time last year.  Average weights for last week were 6.09 lbs. as compared to 6.21 lbs. for the same week last year.  Early spring demand from both the domestic and export markets is extremely strong and creating pressure on the market.  Boneless breast meat, wings, tenders, and 8pc cutups are all experiencing renewed interest and high levels of demand.  Supply is very tight at the current time and some shortages are                                   starting to be reported across the industry.

WOGS- Market is steady to firmer.  Demand from the retail deli and foodservice channels continue to be steady and strong.  Both sized WOGS and cutting stock WOGS are in high demand.  Supply is tight.

Tenders- Market is steady to firmer.  Demand from foodservice and further processors continues to be extremely active and steady.  Supply remains tight.

Boneless Breast- Market is firmer.  Strong demand is being reported from all channels.  Retail grocery, retail deli, and foodservice operations are keeping the market well supported.  Supply is very tight and some shortages are being reported.

Leg Quarters and Thighs- Market is steady to firmer.  Increased export demand for leg quarters continues to gain momentum and the market is experiencing upward pressure.  Retail demand for small to medium sized leg quarters remains very strong.  Supply is tight.

Wings- Market is firmer.  March Madness is having a big effect on the wing category.  Demand from the foodservice channel continues to be extremely strong as operators use wings as a key menu item.  All sizes of wings are being sought after.  Supply is extremely tight and keeping pressure on the market.

Market is steady.  Total headcount for last week was 4,114,000 as compared to 4,156,000 for the same week last year.  Average weights for last week were 33.04 lbs. as compared to 31.30 lbs. for the same week last year.  Egg sets for last week were down 3.28% from prior week and are trending down 4.23% for year to date versus same time last year.  Due to this time of year, demand revolves around future booking orders for whole birds and bone-in breast items.  Not a lot of information is being reported due to these future shipments.  Due to the reduction in egg sets over the past year, less excess                                        supply is being reported.  Overall demand for parts remain static at                                           best.  Supply is reported as available.

Whole Birds- Market is steady.  Current demand revolves around future orders and bookings.  Supply is currently be reported as available.  As with any category that has a major booking period, supply levels can change.

Breast Meat- Market is steady.  Demand from foodservice and retail deli remains steady, but stagnant.  Supply is available.

Wings- Market is steady.  Export demand for whole wings is keeping the market supported and steady.  Supply is available.

Drums- Market is steady.  Demand from the export channel for frozen drums remains consistent and keeping supplies tight.  Supply is available, but tight.

Gulf Shrimp- Market is steady.  Production is seasonally light and keeping overall inventories in tighter supply.  Most sizes have fair inventories for current demand with the exception of the largest sizes which remain very light.

Black Tiger Shrimp- Market is mixed.  Inventories on larger sized product remain in tight supply and have been keeping upward pressure on the market for several weeks.  Mid and smaller sizes are in better supply and combined with the lower priced white shrimp market are keeping downward pressure on the market.

White Shrimp- Market is unsettled.  The market is seeing upward pressure from higher priced replacement inventories overseas.  Those inventories are more limited and putting pressure on current inventories.

King Crab- Market is firm.  Inventories are limited for an active demand.  Demand in Asian markets is very active and limiting inventories for other markets.

Snow Crab- Market is firm.  Inventories are light for an active demand.

Warm Water Lobster Tails- Market is firm.  Inventories are limited for an active demand.  Light production the past few seasons has limited replacement inventories and this combined with the strong demand is keeping pressure on the market.

North American Lobster Tails- Market is firm.  Repeated extreme weather has made for poor fishing conditions this year and this combined with a very strong demand has kept upward pressure on the market for several weeks.

Salmon- Market is mixed.  The market for fillets from Chile is firm due to a very good demand putting pressure on inventories.  The rest of the market is steady to weaker with good inventories for a light demand.

Cod- Market is firm.  Global demand has been very good and keeping pressure on inventories.

Flounder- Market is steady but firm.  Availability on larger sized fillets has been more limited for several weeks and this combined with a good demand has been keeping pressure on the market.  Smaller sized product is in better supply but has seen improved buying activity.

Haddock- Market is firm.  Demand is very good for several week.  Reduced fishing quotas for the upcoming season have put additional pressure on the market.

Pollock- Market is firm.  Good buying activity is keeping pressure on the market.

Domestic Catfish- Market is firmer.  Buying activity has been very good and putting pressure on available inventories.

Tilapia- Market is steady.

Swai- Market is unsettled.  This market has seen ups and downs for several months as the flow of imports has moved higher and lower.  Changes in buying patterns are also contributing to the ups and downs as buying activity had slowed as inventories tightened and the market moved higher and picks back up when the market starts to move lower.

Scallops- Market is steady to weaker.  The start of the Canadian season has been very good with record landings of larger sized scallops being seen.  This combined with the surge in product coming from China has put downward pressure on the market.

Market is firmer. The CME Block and Barrel markets moved higher this week. Spring flush patterns are being reported in areas of the West and South-Central. The market tone for processed cheese has picked up. Milk continues to flow across the country to meet producer needs. The Northeast is experiencing increased orders. Production of Italian and cheddar cheeses is increased. Contacts in the Midwest report slower than expected seasonal movement. In the West inventories are heavy as milk production inches higher.

Market is steady. The CME Butter market moved down slightly this week. Production has remained quite active. Loads of cream in the Northeast are readily available in inventories are growing. Central region producers report ample cream supply including loads coming in from the West. Foodservice butter orders in the West are slightly behind expectations. Producers remain hopeful interest will pick up ahead of spring holidays. Retail sales in the region are good.

Market is steady.  Retail demand continues to be reported as steady and consistent.  Promotional activity is being reported as below average for this time of year.  Easter is now a month away and promotional activity tends to pick up to support the holiday.  Foodservice and institutional demand is being reported as average.  With warmer temperatures in spring, foodservice and QSR business usually gets an uptick in volume.  Supply across most sizes is being reported as available.  Market is mostly flat.  National weekly shell egg inventory reports shell egg inventory to be up 6.4% over last week.

Market slightly higher after early week lows. News from the Whitehouse that US tariffs would remain in place until an agreement is reached with China made an impact. Although soybean crush, (meal for animal food), is selling much faster than the oil, (liquid extracted from crushed product), thus creating a large surplus of oil may keep market from moving too much. Without the past large exports to China, oil prices have to be somewhat competitive for other export countries. Palm oils and the Brazilian crop are big competitors at this time for US soy oil exports.

Market firm. Wheat futures and premium prices are higher this week. The surge is mostly blamed on shortage of raw wheat being railed to mills due to severe winter weather particularly snow. This firming trend may not be over as now the big melts may keep playing havoc on the spring crop with wet fields due to flooding.