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USDA DATA ON CAGE-FREE PRODUCTION

10/01/2019

Based on the importance of cage-free production, the USDA-AMS issues a monthly report on volumes and prices for the information of Industry stakeholders. There is some doubt as to the accuracy of the individual monthly flock numbers especially with reports that show either no change or a significant increase in the cage-free flock for a specific month. It is questioned whether it would not be more informative to post accurate quarterly data in place of questionable monthly figures.

EGG-NEWS summarizes and comments on data and trends in the monthly USDA Cage-Free Report, supplementing the information posted weekly in the EGG-NEWS Egg Weekly Price and Inventory Report.

The USDA Cage Free Report for the month of September 2019 released on October 1st documented a static flock size for hens producing under the Certified Organic seal. The National cage-free flock increased by 2.7 percent. The respective numbers of hens in organic and cage-free flocks should reflect the realities of supply and demand in the market over successive quarters. Average flock production was reduced for September to 75.8 percent percent for both categories of non-caged hens. (Accepting USDA data).

Flock size 2019 September

(million hens) 2019

June through

August

2019

May

2019

April

2019

March

2019

Sept. 2018

through Feb.

2019

Certified Organic 15.8

15.8

15.8

15.7

15.0

15.7

Cage-free hens 52.7

51.3

50.9

50.7

46.9

41.5

Total non-caged 68.5

67.1

66.7

66.4

61.9

57.2

 

Average weekly production cases, September 2019

Certified Organic

232,058 (233,824 August)

Cage-free

776,728 (758,647 August)

Total non-caged

1,008,786 (991,471 August)

 

Average Wholesale Contract Price Cage-Free Brown

$1.53/doz. ($1.54 in August)

Range unchanged at:

$1.15 to $2.10/doz.

FOB Negotiated price, grade quality nest-run, loose

Price range $0.50 to $0.99 per dozen

Average Value of $0.79/doz. (was $0.51 Aug.)

 

Average Advertised National Retail Price C-F, L, Brown

$2.66/doz. (was $2.51 Aug. 2019)

USDA 6-Region

High: NE

$3.33/doz. $2.92 (SW.)

 

Low: SC

$2.37/doz. $2.30 (SW.)

Subscribers are referred to weekly USDA wholesale and retail prices posted in the EGG-NEWS Egg Price and Inventory Report E-mailed each Friday. The previous Monthly Cage-Free Report is available under the STATISTICS Tab.