U.S. commercial hatcheries in the U.S. Department of Agriculture's 19-state weekly program set 189 million eggs in incubators during the week ending September 1, up slightly from the eggs set the corresponding week in 2011 and continuing the positive trend from July, according to the USDA's latest report.

Georgia, Alabama and Arkansas set the most eggs, at 31.33 million, 27.19 million and 20.76 million eggs, respectively. Average hatchability for chicks hatched during the week was 84 percent.

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Broiler growers in the program placed 160 million chicks for meat production during the week, down 1 percent from the comparable week in 2011. Georgia, Alabama and Arkansas came out in the top three again, with 26.27 million, 20.04 million and 19.03 million chicks placed, respectively. Cumulative placements from January 1 through September 1 were 5.74 billion, down 3 percent from the same period in 2011, according to the USDA.

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