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Less beef to offset more pork and poultry

GettyImages-136632638  consumer at meat case Joe Raedle.jpg
Total red meat and poultry production forecast lower for 2023

In 2023, U.S. consumers can anticipate greater availability of pork, broiler meat, and turkey, but less beef, according to the latest USDA “Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook” report.

Last week, USDA’s “World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates” report revealed lower total red meat and poultry production is forecast for 2023 at 106.1 billion lbs., down from 106.6 billion lbs. in 2022. A large decline in beef production attributed to the lower overall number even though the September forecast was up from the August forecast. Currently, USDA is forecasting 2023 beef production at 26.3 billion lbs., down from 28.0 billion lbs. in 2022.

“As the drought pushes more calves into feedlots at a quicker pace than normal, this will likely pull feeder cattle forward next year, decreasing expected marketings in late 2023,” USDA economists noted in the outlook report. “Consequently, 2023 beef production forecast is slightly raised by 70 million pounds to 26.3 billion pounds as higher marketings in early 2023 more than offset fewer fed cattle expected for marketing later in the year.”

Pork production in 2023, on the other hand, is forecast at 27.5 billion lbs., up from 27.1 billion lbs. in 2022. Broiler and turkey production in 2023 are forecast at 45.9 billion lbs. and 52.1 billion lbs., up from 45.4 billion lbs. and 51.2 billion lbs., respectively.

Regarding consumption, USDA projects total poultry disappearance to be 115.3 pounds per capita, up 1.2% in the 11th consecutive year of record broiler production and following the recovery of turkey production from the impact of avian influenza. Red meat disappearance is forecast at 109.5 pounds per capita, down 1.6%, as lower beef supplies offset an increase in projected pork production.

USDA forecasts beef per capita for 2023 will decline by almost three pounds, while pork is expected to climb about one pound per person. Disappearance of broiler meat is projected to increase about half a pound, a slower pace than in previous years. Turkey is forecast to rise over one pound, the first increase in seven years.

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