Animal Protein Reports

Reports from CoBank Knowledge Exchange focusing on the animal protein industry.

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U.S. Animal Protein Needs Trade Negotiators Back at the Table

For more than a decade, free trade has become decidedly less popular in the U.S. Unfortunately for U.S. meat exporters, the rest of the world continues to make headway on trade agreements that threaten to put U.S. producers at a disadvantage in global markets.

Dollar Divergence: US Dollar Index Does Not Reflect True Dollar Impact on US Ag Exports

The U.S. Dollar Index saw rapid deflation in 2020 and has coincided with a rally in commodity prices. 

The Great Grocery Grab of 2020 and the Ongoing Impact to U.S. Animal Protein

2020 was the most volatile and, for many, the most challenging year in U.S. animal protein history.

Surging Feed Prices to Test US Animal Protein’s Recovery

Feed costs have been relatively benign since 2012, helping the beef, pork and poultry sectors to expand more from 2014 to 2019 than in any five year period in the industry’s history. But in the coming year, U.S. livestock and poultry producers will face more feed cost inflation than they have in over a decade, challenging their ability to recover after a difficult and volatile 2020.

US Pork Export Outlook: How to Save Our Own Bacon as China Rebuilds

The U.S. pork industry has built multiple new plants over the past four years, increasing U.S. packing capacity by 12% with much of this new capacity eyed for international markets. 

Closed Meat Plants Today Mean Empty Meat Cases this Summer

The spread of COVID-19 among people who work in many beef and pork plants across the country has led to plant slowdowns and shut downs, creating a bottleneck in the U.S. meat and livestock supply chain. 

Walmart’s New Beef Plant is More Sizzle than Steak, For Now

In January, Walmart officially entered the beef business when it opened a case-ready beef plant in Thomasville, Georgia. 

The Year Ahead: Forces That Will Shape the US Rural Economy in 2020

The U.S. rural economy will continue to face headwinds in 2020 and is expected to underperform relative to the economy of urban America. 

Evolving U.S. Demographics Give Chicken a New Leg to Stand On

Evolving U.S. demographics are shifting consumer preferences from white chicken meat to dark meat.

US Poultry Outlook: This Time Things Are Different

The US chicken industry has experienced an unprecedented run of historic profitability since 2012 and responded with a significant increase in production and processing capacity.

African Swine Fever Implications for US Ag

Last August when the first cases of African Swine Fever (ASF) were announced in Northeast China, it was immediately clear that the global pork sector would be affected.

Protein Passport: Export Market Volatility is Worth the Risk

U.S. animal protein supplies have reached all-time highs in both production and domestic consumption. 

The Year Ahead: Forces That Will Shape the US Rural Economy in 2019

The U.S. economy is still performing well by most key measures. However, consumers, investors, companies and other market participants have become more wary about the near-term future with seemingly good reason. 

African Swine Fever: Animal Disease and Trade Disputes Converge on the Global Stage

African Swine Fever (ASF) is spreading throughout China, the world’s leading producer and consumer of pork. The swine disease — which is feared by every major pork producing and exporting country — has been detected in ten China provinces in the last two and a half months. 

Redefining Farm-to-Fork: Costco Sets New Protein Precedent

Costco sells more than 90 million rotisserie chickens each year, so the announcement that plans to build a poultry processing complex in eastern Nebraska raised numerous questions about how the nation's third largest retailer will orchestrate the construction and operation of a $400 million poultry complex.

US Beef Exports Are Growing, But So Are Trade Risks

Beef production in the U.S. is on the rise, and export outlets have never been more important. U.S. beef exports in 2017 exceeded industry expectations and the momentum is expected to continue through 2018 with exports forecast to increase 4-6 percent. However, market access with key partners is creating a heightened level of uncertainty.

The Year Ahead: Forces That Will Shape the US Rural Economy in 2018

U.S. cotton acreage will be up in 2018, but nowhere is that increase more transformative than in the Southwest. Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas are projected to increase planted area by 40 percent, 16 percent, and 6 percent, respectively.

Can the Cage-Free Commitments Be Met?

U.S. egg production, pricing and producer profitability have been highly volatile over the last two years. The Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI) outbreak in 2015 caused egg prices to surge, incentivizing egg producers to ramp up production and quickly replace the laying hens lost to HPAI.

Lab-grown Cultured Meat – A Long Road to Market Acceptance

Alternative protein products derived from plant sources, insects and cultured meats are one of the top food trends to watch in 2018 and beyond. The effect on livestock and poultry protein demand in the U.S., however, is not expected to be significant.

US Packing Capacity Sufficient for Expanding Cattle Herd

The U.S. beef cattle herd is still in the expansion phase of the current beef cattle cycle. This expansion will lead to steady growth in beef production through 2019. However, following the most aggressive 3 year start to any expansion on record, inventory growth appears to be decelerating.