Broiler production next year is expected to be 37.405 billion pounds, 1.1 percent more than the 36.991 billion pounds estimated for 2011, but 228 million pounds less than last month’s forecast, according to USDA’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report this week.  Analysts did not change their broiler production estimate of 36.991 billion pounds for 2011 which will be 1.3 percent more than the 36.516 billion pounds in 2010.

USDA reduced its beef production estimate for 2011 as steer/heifer slaughter in the second quarter was lower than expected although more cows were slaughtered.  Also, lighter-weight cattle are being placed which will likely moderate carcass weight growth during the year.  Beef production this year is now likely to be 26.236 billion pounds, 0.7 percent less than the 26.414 billion pounds in 2010.  Beef production will slip again in 2012 with a forecast of 25.115, 4.3 percent under 2011.  Pork production for 2011 and 2012 was little changed from last month’s estimates.  Pork production in 2011 at 22.699 billion pounds will be 1.1 percent ahead of the 22.456 billion pounds in 2010.  Pork production is forecasted to increase 1.6 percent in 2012 to be 23.069 billion pounds.

Total red meat and poultry production for 2011 was essentially unchanged from last month’s estimate while USDA’s forecast for 2012 was trimmed slightly.  This year’s total red meat and poultry production is expected to be 92.431 billion pounds, 0.7 percent above the 91.772 billion pounds in 2010.  Next year’s total is likely to be 92.138, 48 million pounds less than last month’s estimate and 0.3 percent under the estimate for 2011.

Broiler exports this year are estimated at 6.480 billion pounds, unchanged from USDA’s June estimate and 4.3 percent less than the 6.773 billion pounds in 2010.  Broiler exports in 2012 were also left unchanged at 6.700 billion pounds, an increase of 3.4 percent over 2011.  USDA’s 12-city average wholesale price for broilers in 2011 is expected to be between 81-84 cents per pound, 1 cent lower on each end of the range from last month’s estimate.  In 2010 the comparable price was 82.9 cents per pound.  Next year the broiler price could average between 82-89 cents per pound, 1 cent higher on the upper end of the range from last month’s forecast.