An email survey of Egg Industry Insider and Egg Industry readers conducted the week of April 23 found that 42.5% intend to reduce flock numbers between now and the rest of the year. Of those who plan to cut back, 41.9% say they plan to reduce their flock size by 5% to 10%; 22.6% say they’ll reduce numbers by more than 10%, and 32.3% say they will reduce flock numbers by less than 5%.

However, 47.1% say they will increase flock size between now and the end of the year: 38.1% by 5% to 10%; 28.6% by more than 10%; and 14.3% by less than 5%.

Most respondents expect profits for the remainder of 2007 to be higher than 2006: 36.4% expect profits to be higher by 5% to 10%; 23.6% expect profits to be higher by 10% or more; 12.7% expect profits to be higher by less than 5%, while 18.2% expect no change. About 9% expect lower profits the remainder of 2007 versus 2006.

Readers were also asked what measures they are taking or considering to maximize profits for the remainder of 2007. Several said early molt, with some saying early sales, and taking out low-producing flocks. One reader says, “we are letting barns set idle for four to six weeks April through October. We are also converting cage barns to cage-free barns, we are closing about 800,000 cage spaces and converting to about 150,000 cage-free spaces.” Another reader plans to improve feed efficiency and automation. One reader plans to maximize efficiency to reduce production costs, and create value addition to eggs, while another survey respondent plans to “modernize and increase ingredient storage in our feed mill, build a new layer building and construct an egg processing plant and refrigeration facility.”

Note: 6.8% of the surveys emailed went to international subscribers.