After months of losses in the chicken industry due to a decrease in demand and a drastic increase in feed costs, the chicken market is starting to reach the break-even point. The Ohio Farmer reports that while chicken and breast meat prices are down from a year ago, production is moderating and costs are coming down, increasing margins for processors.
Chicken production this year at the week ended Oct. 15 totaled 6.5 billion birds, 1.9% fewer than year ago, under year ago for the second straight week after being over year ago all year. Chicken meat production totaled 27.773 billion pounds, 0.8% more than year ago, the smallest year-over-year comparison of the year.
Chickens increased 1 to 6 cents to 65-68 cents and 65-71 cents/lb. in the eastern and midwestern regions yesterday, 14.2% lower than year ago. Other whole bird measurements were up -- the Georgia dock by 2.9% and the U.S. Department of Agriculture's weighted average by 4.6%.
Breasts were unchanged at 66-67 cents/lb., 8.3% lower than year ago, and breast meat was down 3-5 cents to $1.05-1.17/lb., just 3.9% lower.
Source: Ohio Farmer