Editors note: The USDA and ag media can carefully document history with numbers.  It is the job of each ranch survivor to use the data to make profitable projections . Although these numbers are probably correct, here is how it will shake out:

1) The US has imported more beef than exported for the last 21 years.

2) Although data shows more beef is imported (+$2,000,000,000) than is exported, a reducing inventory of beef production has had no resolve in USDA and BEEF CHECK OFF efforts to increase US exports. The unasked question is “Who does the US buy beef from for export sales when the nation has not produced enough beef in 21 years to feed the nation?”

3) No extra expense is necessary for US producers to implement NAIS when exports are proven to be of no value to the US producer.  Any country that thinks US should do mandatory NAIS will not be able to buy any US beef shortly.  There won’t be any extra available.

4) US beef export will be history within 3 years.  Check the data and watch. 

5) The Beef Check Off money should be used totally to promote a US market to increase competition with vegetarian promotions. Darol Dickinson


Report shows less beef production, growing exports
By John Maday  |  Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Weather-related reductions in feedyard performance and finished weights will contribute to lower U.S. beef production in the coming months, according to USDA’s Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook report. Beef exports, meanwhile, are improving as international demand improves, particularly in Asian markets.

Highlights of the report include:

  • The decline in dressed weights during the last quarter of 2009 and into the first quarter of 2010 was exacerbated by the December snowstorms that swept through the Plains cattle feeding areas.
  • In 2009, dressed weights began their typical seasonal decline in mid-October, until then beginning to increase in early November. Dressed weights returned to their typical seasonal decline in December, with the decline expected to continue into the first quarter of 2010.
  • An increase in cow slaughter, both beef and dairy cows, probably contributed to lighter average slaughter weights. 2009 cow slaughter exceeded 2008 levels during the middle weeks of November.
  • Cow slaughter levels in 2009 were from a smaller cow-herd base, which implies an increase in the rate of culling in 2009 and a continuation of cow-herd liquidation.
  • USDA’s Cattle inventory report, to be released January 29, will provide important information regarding the short-term future of cattle inventories and calf crops and the resulting beef production for the next several years.
  • Byproduct values in December were up by over one third from December 2008 but have since slipped a bit.
  • The report projects 2009 beef exports will total 1.861 billion pounds, a 1 percent decrease from 2008. Increased beef sales to Asia continue to boost U.S. beef exports.
  • Demand for U.S. beef in South Korea continues to recover after the global economic downturn that halted growth shortly after trade of U.S. beef had resumed in the summer of 2008.
  • U.S. exports to Japan have increased 19 percent year-over-year through November.
  • U.S. exports to Mexico fell 15 percent through November compared with 2008, while sales to Canada are nearly 6 percent lower year-to-date.
  • In 2010, exports are expected to resume growth, increasing almost 10 percent compared with 2009.
  • Live cattle imports for 2009 totaled about 2 million head, with the pace of imports increasing late in the year. During 2010, the United States is forecast to import 2.15 million head as U.S. demand for live cattle is expected to increase.
  • The U.S. inventory of breeding hogs declined for the 7th consecutive quarter since June 1, 2008. The U.S. pork industry has reduced its productive capacity by 6.1 percent—which amounts to 383,000 breeding animals—since the cyclical peak of 6.23 million head on December 1, 2007.
  • The pork has lost money in 24 of the last 26 months.
  • Breeding-herd reduction are the typical response to losses, but larger-than-expected fall farrowings and litter rates largely offset breeding herd reductions and have negative implications for reductions in first-half 2010 pork production.
  • Through November 2009, U.S. pork exports were almost 14 percent below the comparable period in 2008, but gained some momentum late in the year.
  • The United States is expected to export 4.5 billion pounds of pork in 2010, 8.4 percent more than in 2009.
  • During the fourth quarter of 2009, broiler meat production is forecast at 8.85 billion pounds, down fractionally from a year earlier.
  • During 2010 broiler meat production is projected to exceed 2009 volumes by 1 percent.