Commercial hatcheries in the U.S. Department of Agriculture's 19-state weekly program set 197 million eggs in incubators during the week ending March 3, down 5 percent from the eggs set the corresponding week in 2011, according to the latest USDA data.

Average hatchability for chicks hatched during the week was 85 percent. Broiler growers in the program placed 163 million chicks for meat production during the week ending March 3. Placements were down 3 percent from the comparable week in 2011. Cumulative placements from January 1 through March 3 were 1.45 billion, down 4 percent from the same period in 2011, according to USDA numbers. 

Georgia remains the top state for both broiler-type eggs set and broiler-type chicks placed, with 32.15 million eggs placed and 27.441 chicks placed in the week ending March 3.

For more poultry information and statistics, see www.wattagnet.com/marketdata.html.