Meat and poultry production will fall and prices will rise over the next year as producers adjust to “higher and more volatile” feed costs, according to a report from Rabobank International’s food & agribusiness research and advisory unit. One of the authors of the report, Dave Nelson, will speak at the NCC Annual Conference in Washington next week and will also unveil a new report on the international poultry sector.

“Rabobank believes that U.S. meat and poultry production could decline by nearly 5 percent year-on-year by mid-2012,” said a report entitled “Where’s the Beef?”  The cattle sector is still reeling from the lengthy drought in the Southwestern states, the report said, leading to continued herd liquidation and high prices in 2012.  Pork production is expected to remain “subdued” and prices will be high, the report said.

Rabobank forecasts broiler production to run below year-ago levels in each quarter of 2012, according to the report. Prices will be high compared to previous years, the report suggested.

“Overall, Rabobank expects global protein supplies to tighten further in 2012 as production lags behind GDP growth,” the report said.  “Barring major economic disruption, Rabobank believes that this will lead to another year of record prices in most markets for most proteins around the world.”

Nelson will participate in the “Situation and Outlook Panel” at the NCC Annual Conference on Wednesday along with Jerry Bange, chairman of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s World Agricultural Outlook Board, and Farha Aslam, managing director at Stephens, Inc.  Copies of a new Rabobank report, “Crossroads for Growth: The International Poultry Sector Towards 2020,” will be available to attendees at the conference.