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US turkey production down

Turkey production for the first 6 months of 2009 is down 9.4%, totalling 2.8 bln lbs, compared to the same period in 2008, according to the most recent Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook from USDA's Economic Research Service.

The drop in production of turkey meat was primarily due to a decline in the number of birds slaughtered.

During the first half of 2009, the number of turkeys slaughtered was down 9.5% compared with the first half of 2008. There was also a small reduction in the average weight of birds going to slaughter.

Forecast

For the second half of 2009, the forecast for turkey meat production is 2.94 bln lbs, down 6.7% from the same period in 2008, and 35 million lbs less than the previous forecast. The turkey meat production decrease is expected to come primarily from a smaller number of birds slaughtered because the average weights at slaughter are not expected to be significantly different from the previous year.

During the first 6 months of 2009, the number of turkey poults placed for growout totaled only 141 mln, down 9.6% from the same period in 2008 and 9.7% lower than the number placed for growout in the first 6 months of 2007.

Source: Meat&Poultry

Natalie Berkhout

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