This report represents information for the week ending March 5, 2020.

Market is mixed. Total beef production for last week was up 20.4% from prior week and was up 7.8% compared to same time last year. Total headcount for last week was 666,000 as compared to 628,000 for the same week last year. Live weights for last week were down 2 lbs. from prior week but up 25 lbs. versus same time last year. Weather conditions have improved across much of the country versus the prior few weeks. This combined with multiple plants coming back online from being down for routine maintenance has helped to improve overall production. Multiple plants across the Texas region were impacted by the severe weather and the following power outages. Dining restriction measures have been improving across the country and helping to improve foodservice demand.

Grinds- Market is unsettled. Production is improved and helping to take pressure off availability. Pricing has been varied between the packers based on the current inventory levels.

Loins- Market is steady to weaker. Overall demand is typically lighter for the period after Valentine’s and now that production is back on track the movement has seen downward pressure as we moved through the week.

Rounds- Market is mostly steady. Demand is seasonally good, and the improved production has helped to remove some of the upward pressure seen over the past few weeks.

Chucks- Market is steady to weaker. Inventories are good for current demand. Improved production has helped to reverse some of the trends seen over the past few weeks.

Ribs- Market is steady to weaker. Improved production and a fair demand are helping to put downward pressure on the market.

Market is steady to firmer. Total pork production for last week was up 8.2% versus prior week and was up 4.6% compared to same time last year. Total headcount for last week was 2,642,000 as compared to 2,561,000 for same week last year. Live weights for last week were down 2 lbs. from prior week but were up 4 lbs. when compared with same time last year.  Strong winter storms had an impact on logistics and availability over the past few weeks as heavy snow and extreme cold swept across much of the country. Improved weather conditions have helped to improve both production and moving of the animals. The USDA recently announced that cold storage inventories are down 30% from same time last year. Hog supplies are expected to tighten as we move further into 2021 due to reductions in the breeding herd that started last summer. This impact is expected to be felt as we move into Q2 and as we move through the summer months. Cold storage inventories are currently at a 10-year low and this combined with exports that were up 15% in 2020 are adding additional pressure to the market. China’s imports have been lowered to start 2020 but additional new cases of African Swine Fever are being reported and keeping that market in a more unsettled tone.

Bellies- Market is firmer. Very good demand is keeping pressure on inventories that have been reduced due in part to the lighter production the past few weeks. Demand for export to Canada have been very good due to supply chain disruptions that they have seen in their market.

Hams- Market is firmer. Export interest has been very good and helping to move additional inventories. Demand for Easter is expected to put pressure on the market over the coming weeks as buyers look to cover their needs for the holiday time frame.

Loins- Market is mostly steady. The market has held mostly steady as we moved through the last few weeks even with the weather issues. Inventories are varied between packers.

Butts- Market is firmer. Export demand has been good with pricing being favorable for the market. Buying activity had been strong for the past several weeks as buyers looked to cover their needs ahead of the upcoming BBQ season. The weather issues put additional pressure on this market over the past few weeks. Demand is expected to be seasonally good as we move through the upcoming weeks.

Ribs- Market is unsettled. Cold storage inventories are lighter and the expected lighter production moving into the summer are expected to help keep pressure on the market.

Market is steady. Total headcount for last week was 177,430,000 as compared to 170,749,000 for the same week last year. Average weights for last week were 6.46 lbs. as compared to 6.21 lbs. for the same week last year. Chick placements on fryers for week ending 4/3/21 are estimated at 161.4 million head count. Placements for previous week were 163.4 million and same week last year was 171.3 million. Industry plants are back to running five days a week which is helping the supply side of the business. Retail and foodservice activity is being reported as average to light this week. Processing schedules are still running at reduced levels due to labor shortages. Industry demand for boneless breasts and tenders is rated as moderate. Leg quarters and wings are rated as steady to good. Export demand for leg quarters continues to gain momentum as future orders improve. With tightened production schedules, offerings and spot market activity are lighter than normal.

WOGS- Market is steady. As the weather becomes warmer, retail deli and fast food QSR sales are showing improvement. Sized WOGs and cutting stock sizes are clearing well. Offerings are limited.

Tenders- Market is steady. After the run up in demand during the month of February, activity has flatlined for the time being. Supply remains tight on select and jumbo sizes.

Boneless Breast- Market is steady. With retail and foodservice business getting a bump in activity over the last month, the market appears to have stabilized and is holding firm on all sizes of product. Supply is moderate to tight depending on the size.

Leg Quarters and Thighs- Market is steady to firmer. Improved export demand continues into the month of March. Future orders for leg quarters from foreign destinations continue to be reported as strong. Retail volume for drums and thighs is consistent. Dark meat demand continues to rise as foodservice activity improves. Supply is available, but tight depending on the sourcing plant.

Wings- Market is steady to firm. After a two-month run up in demand to start the year, volume continues to be strong in the foodservice channel and with further processors. Limited supply is being reported on all sizes.

Market is steady. Total headcount for last week was 3,630,000 as compared to 4,201,000 for the same week last year. Average weights for last week were 34.61 lbs. as compared to 32.47 lbs. for the same week last year. The market on frozen whole birds remains solid and firm as the booking period for holiday turkeys progresses. Demand for fresh white meat and trim is rated as steady while activity on bone-in parts is more active. Export business on drums is robust while orders on wings continues to be slower than expected. Supply for whole birds is very tight, parts remain limited, and white meats are available.

Whole Birds- Market is firm. Future bookings from the demand side are strong. Supply continues to be constrained due to reduced head counts. All sizes are clearing well, hen sizes are the most requested, and offerings are light.

Breast Meat- Market is steady. Demand from retail and foodservice has picked up as temperatures warm across the nation. As more consumers get outside, sub shops and delis are seeing an uptick is activity. Supply is available on fresh raw material while some excess is being reported on frozen product.

Wings- Market is steady to weaker. Export and domestic activity continue to be rated as soft. Weekly demand on whole wings and 2-joints is reported as light and more offerings are becoming available. Supply is available.

Drums and Thigh Meat- Market is steady to firm. As we move into Springtime, drums usually get more activity, and this year is no different. Demand for drums is in the rise both domestically and abroad. Tom sizes continue to be the most requested. Thigh meat remains well supported by grocery demand for ground turkey. Offerings are limited.

Gulf Shrimp- Market is firm. Demand has been improving over the past few weeks putting additional pressure on limited inventories. The National Marine Fisheries Service recently released the first survey of Gulf of Mexico shrimp catches for January showing a 45% increase over January of last year. Catches last year were hampered with heavy rains and runoff waters flowing into the Gulf impacting growing conditions for shrimp. Meaningful replacement inventories are not anticipated until later in the spring.

Black Tiger Shrimp- Market is mixed. The market remains in the same trends that have been seen for several months. Larger sized product continues to see lighter demand as this product is primarily used in the foodservice market and many restaurants continue to see light traffic. Smaller sized product has seen upward pressure with light inventories with a good demand.

White Shrimp- Market is steady to firmer. There have been delays at the ports causing logistical and inventory issues. Logistic costs combined with higher production costs are putting additional pressure on the market. Demand has been improving across the country as additional dining restrictions are lifted.

King Crab- Market is firm. Strong global demand and limited inventories are keeping continued pressure on the market.

Snow Crab- Market is firm. Inventories are limited for current demand.

Warm Water Lobster Tails- Market is firm. Prices have moved higher multiple weeks in a row and at a very quick pace.  Inventories are very limited due to seasonal fishery closures, light production for the past few years, and a very strong demand for product due to the overall tail market having very limited inventories. Allocations have been commonplace as demand is exceeding supply.

North American Lobster Tails- Market is firm. Pricing has continued to push higher as we moved into this week. Inventories are limited for current demand. Poor weather conditions and seasonal plant closures have kept pressure on production over the past several weeks.

Salmon- Market is firmer. Demand has been improving over the past several days and that trend has continued as we moved through this week. Inventories are fair to light for the active demand.

Cod- Market is steady to firmer. Inventories on product coming from China are seeing pressure due to a slow-down in production around Chinese New Year as well shipping issues being reported in the region. Inventories are anticipated to be lighter as we move into Q2.

Flounder- Market is unsettled. Production and shipping delays in China are helping to keep the market more unsettled. Inventories are tightening with larger sized product being very limited.

Haddock- Market is firmer. Delays in shipments and plant disruptions related to COVID-19 are putting pressure on availability and putting upward pressure on the market.

Pollock- Market is firmer. Domestic consumption has improved as we moved into Lent. Quotas have been reduced and fishing is off to a slower than expectations due in part to COVID-19 safety measures.

Domestic Catfish- Market is firm. Production has been lighter than expectations and keeping pressure on availability. Shorts and allocations to orders have been commonplace.  Some reports show that allocations are expected to take place until closer to mid-year. Pricing has been at higher levels for several months now and allocations of orders have been commonplace for months. This is due to both supply and labor concerns.

Tilapia- Market is firm. Increasing shipping costs combined with higher raw material costs are putting upward pressure on replacement inventories overseas. Plants in China have been at capacity for several weeks as they tried to get orders out ahead of Chinese New Year. Container availability for product coming out of China is limited and delays in shipments are likely over the coming weeks. Plants in China are expected to remain closed for a longer period after Chinese New Year this year to allow for a quarantine period before everyone returns to work.

Swai- Market is firmer. Demand has been improving over the past few weeks and the market has seen upward pressure as we moved into this week. Limited availability of other species is putting additional pressure on this market. Raw material costs overseas have been increasing and this combined with increasing ocean freight costs are putting upward pressure on replacement inventories overseas. This is helping to put upward pressure on the market even though demand has been fair.

Scallops- Market is steady to firmer. The domestic market is seeing upward pressure with more limited inventories ahead of the new season which kicks off in April. The market for product of Canada has been seeing upward pressure as lower catch limits and poor weather have been limiting availability. The market has moved higher on all sizes of Canadian product over the past few weeks. The market for product of China is seeing upward pressure due to tariffs and light inventories.

Market is firmer. The CME block and barrel markets moved higher this week. In the northeast heavy milk supply continues to spur production at capacity for most producers. Inventory levels in the region are growing but not burdensome. Retail demand is firm. Midwestern producers report a variety of production schedules. Food service demand continues to be unpredictable. Retail demand is active. With many of the southern states still recovering from severe winter weather, producers are looking to refill milk pipelines to resume normal production levels. In the west some COVID restrictions are beginning to loosen though producers have yet to see foodservice demand rebound. Milk in the region is heavy.

Market is unsettled. The CME market surged higher this week before inching downward as the week progressed. Butter production the country remains active as cream supply is abundant. While foodservice demand is lower, some producers are preparing for spring holiday demands. Export interest for unsalted butter is higher. Northeastern butter production is strong. Retail demand in the  region is down slightly. Butter production in the west is heavy. Retail demand in the region is strong. Demand for bulk butter is higher.

 

Market is steady to firmer. Retail demand is being reported as moderate to good this week, and retailers are having to restock following the recent snowstorms. Foodservice volume continues to be reported as light, but improving and moderate in some regions. Supply is available but has tightened on both medium and large sizes. Market is trending higher on both medium sizes and large sizes. National weekly shell egg inventory reports shell egg inventory down 6.7% over last week.

Market is steady to firm. Soybean markets and futures continue to trade actively but have started to become steadier over the last week. Domestic soybean stocks continue to be reported as tight. Export demand remains active as foreign countries cover their soybean needs due to the uncertain crop from South America. The demand from the bio-diesel sector continues to put added pressure on the market. Crop and yield reports out of Brazil continue to show improvement, but the forecast out of Argentina remains unpredictable due to dry weather forecasts over the next two weeks.

Market is steady.  Weather continues to be favorable for wheat domestic and abroad.  The potential of China purchasing US agricultural products will weigh on how this market moves.

Market is firm. The latest market pressure comes from poly where raw resin markets have seen multiple increases compounded by recent severe weather in the southern U.S. Nitrile gloves are expected to remain unstable in both pricing and supply for the foreseeable future. Raw material increases are expected on both latex and vinyl gloves as well. Further increases for all glove types are anticipated. Blended material gloves are beginning to enter the market. Logistics has been and will remain a major factor to the overall glove market health. Ocean freight operations are experiencing multiple challenges as attempts are made to keep up with the increased imports demand. Not only shortages in containers but equipment as well has led to significant delays in offloading goods.