May poultry production down 8% on year


May poultry production down 8% on year

U.S. poultry production was down from May 2019 to May 2020 as some plants reduced schedules or closed because of COVID-19 infections. The USDA says the total of 4.037 billion pounds was 8% lower than a year ago, with a 7% decline in chicken at 3.601 billion and a 13% drop for turkey production to 427.474 million pounds.

The chicken slaughter was 9% lower than last year at 740.989 million head and the turkey slaughter was down 14% to 16.483 million head.

Average live weights for all chickens and turkeys were up modestly. All chickens averaged 6.46 pounds, 2% heavier, and all turkeys averaged 32.48 pounds, 1% higher.

Ante-mortem condemnations of 11.173 million pounds were down 12%, representing 0.21% of the live weight, and post-mortem condemnations were 30.329 million pounds, also down 12%, or 0.75% of monthly production.

The USDA says poultry stocks in cold storage at the end of May were 4% below the year before, with a 15% decrease in turkey cancelling out a 3% increase in chicken.

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