Cold Storage Substantially Larger than a Year Ago

US - USDA’s monthly Cold Storage Report indicates that June 30 inventories of frozen meat and poultry were slightly larger than last month and still substantially larger than one year ago.
calendar icon 23 July 2008
clock icon 3 minute read
Frozen chicken inventories were pegged at 768.7 million pounds, 19.4% higher than last year and 1.8% higher than last month.

Reduction in chicken output have been supportive to chicken prices but have not kept these stocks from growing and the big year-on-year growth items were legs, drumsticks, leg quarters and paws and feet — all products that depend on exports.

“Other” chicken, which accounts for about half of all inventories was also 19% higher than last year and 8% higher than last month.

Turkey inventories grew in their normal seasonal way but are substantially higher (25.5%) than last year and 7.7% higher for the month.

Other Highlights from the Report

  • Another monthly decline in pork inventories and levels much closer to year-ago. Total pork in cold storage on June 30 was 8.5% lower than at the end of May. June stocks were still 10.9% higher than one year ago but that is MUCH smaller than the 32% year-on-year increase we saw back in March.
  • The year-on-year decline in pork stocks was led in both percentage (- 33%) and unit (-12.4 million pounds) terms by the reduction in pork variety meats in freezers. Frozen picnics were second in both percentage and unit terms and frozen hams were third. The first and last of those items are cuts that are driven strongly by exports at this time of year so these suggest that June exports will remain strong. The latest actual export data we have right now is for May.
  • Stocks of frozen pork bellies remain large at just over 75 million pounds, 59.7% larger than last year but 13.7% smaller than last month. This is the largest June bellies inventory since 1999 when 93.4 million pounds were in U.S. freezers. July pork bellies were up $2.00 and August pork bellies were up $1.625 in today’s trading before the Cold Storage report was released.
  • Beef inventories were about steady with last year and 4% higher than last month. Beef cuts were 14.9% higher but they comprise only 16% of total beef in freezers. Boneless beef accounts for the other 84%.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.
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