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News and analysis on the global poultry
and animal feed industries.
on October 16, 2009

Overview of 2009 US egg statistics

Key values from poultry memo highlighted

University of California Poultry Memo, Number 82, covering 2009 through August, has been circulated by Don Bell, poultry specialist emeritus, University of California-Riverside.

The following key values were presented:

  • 155 million pullet chicks have been hatched to date representing a 2.6% decline over the corresponding period in 2008. 
  • The 24-month previous hatch through August 2009 amounted to 459 million pullets, representing an increase of 8.3 million pullets over the 24-month cumulative hatch through August 2008. It is noted that this parameter is correlated strongly to the Urner-Barry (U-B) Midwest egg price. 
  • The average monthly transfer of pullets to layer houses is projected to attain 16.4 million for 2009 representing a 1.7% increase over the corresponding value for 2008. 
  • As of August 2009 the producing flock comprised 276.6 million hens. The average flock size to date is 280.3 million hens, relatively unchanged compared to the first eight months of 2008. 
  • Total egg production through the first eight months of 2009 amounted to 51.343 billion eggs a 0.9% increase over the first eight months of 2008. Pullet transfers, hen numbers and egg production data suggest restraint in expansion consistent with U-B egg prices prevailing in 2009. 
  • An average of 24.4% of the national flock has been molted, relatively unchanged from 2008 but an approximately 12% reduction from 2007. This has resulted in a decrease in weighted average flock age. 
  • 44 million hens were depleted through August 2008, representing a 9% decrease over 2008 but a 13% reduction from the corresponding eight month period in 2007. 
  • 44.4 million cases were consigned to breakers or processed in in-line units during the first eight months of 2009, a 2.2% reduction over January–August 2008. Approximately 31% of total U.S. domestic consumption is now further-processed.
  • The nine-month average U-B Midwest, Large price is 101 cents/dozen. This is a 32% decrease over the nine-month average of 2008. The months of May–September were below 100 cents per dozen offsetting the higher revenues through the first 4 months of this year. 
  • Average U-B Midwest breaker egg price for the first 9-months of 2009 was 42.6 cents/dozen, a 45% decrease from the 87.8 cents/dozen in 2008. Unit revenue for breaking eggs has declined as a proportion of production cost and is now close to 64% of calculated nest-run production cost. It is noted that breaker egg prices peaked at 114 cents/dozen in March 2008 with a prevailing U-B price of 165.6 cents per dozen. 
  • Nine-month average production cost in 2009 is 59 cents/dozen, ranging from a high of 63.7 cents/dozen in June to a low of 57 cents/dozen in September. The approximately 9% reduction in production cost over the 68 cents/dozen recorded in 2008 is attributed to lower ingredient costs. Production costs peaked in June and July of 2008 at 73 cents/dozen.
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