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US Slaughter Numbers and Domestic Beef Supply Projected to Impact Fourth Quarter Hog Prices

by 5m Editor
3 September 2004, at 12:00am

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 1594. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.

Farm-Scape, Episode 1594

Sask Pork says key factors affecting live hog prices this fall in Canada will be the number of hogs slaughtered in the US and the impact of BSE on the volume of meat available in Canada.

Global demand for pork continues to be good moving toward fall but higher North American slaughter numbers over the past two weeks have pressured prices.

Sask Pork Industry and Policy Analyst Brad Marceniuk says key factors to watch will be slaughter numbers in the US and how BSE affects the meat supply in Canada.

"Economists from the United States have predicted a pretty flat growth for the fourth quarter of 2004, yet slaughter numbers in the United States have continued to expand by about three to four percent year to date.

There is some concern in respect to where slaughter numbers will go in the fourth quarter. At this time, looking at the futures markets, prices look to be fairly decent.

Current prices here in Saskatchewan are roughly around 160 dollars per 100 kilograms. Projections for this fall, we're looking at prices to slowly slide down as typically we do see every fall.

Other factors we've got to be aware of this fall include the BSE situation in Canada. We need to look at where the cull cow market is going to go.

It could be potentially four hundred thousand to five hundred thousand cull cows going to market over the next six months or so.

That could potentially increase the meat supply significantly and put a lot of cheap meat out on the market.

If we do have a rapid expansion in meat going out to the Canadian market, because it can't be exported to the United States, we could see some downward pressure on pork prices this fall."

Marceniuk projects September prices in the range of 150 to 160 dollars per hundred kilograms falling in the fourth quarter from about 150 to about 140 dollars, again, depending on US slaughter numbers and any major changes in the Canadian meat supply.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

5m Editor