Egg Industry Statistics and Reports



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









Sept. 2018

through Feb.


Certified Organic 15.8






Cage-free hens 52.7






Total non-caged 68.5







Average weekly production cases, September 2019

Certified Organic

232,058 (233,824 August)


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.


Updated USDA Projections for 2018 and 2019 U.S. Egg Production


The USDA Economic Research Service issued an updated forecast of egg production on September 18th, following the previous August 16 th report. The volume of eggs produced and per capita consumption in 2019 were increased by 2.5 and 2.0 percent respectively compared to 2018 data. Consistent with this disparity, the benchmark New York price was reduced by 34.1 percent in unit value. Production data reflecting 2016 and 2017 should be compared to 2015, impacted by the Spring outbreak of HPAI in the upper-Midwest. The price elasticity of eggs is denoted by the disparity in the decline in the New York price benchmark relative to forecast volume of production.


The latest data is reflected in the table below:-



Parameter EGGS 2015
Difference %
2018 to 2019

Production (m. dozen)




7,952 8,154 +2.5% 8,230

Consumption (eggs per capita)





289.7 +2.0% 291.0


New York price (c/doz.)





91 -34.1% 99


Source: Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook -September 19th 2019

*Impacted by Spring 2015 HPAI outbreaks. Consumption in 2014, 267 eggs per capita

Subscribers to EGG-NEWS are referred to the postings depicting weekly prices, volumes and trends and the monthly review of prices and related industry statistics.


Egg Monthly


Review of August 2019 Production Costs and Statistics.

August 2019 USDA ex-farm blended nest-run benchmark price was up a noteworthy 93.9 percent from July 2019 to 57.6 cents per dozen 3.8 below the U.S. average benchmark cost of production. Low price is consistent with seasonal purchase trends but accentuated by oversupply.

  • August 2019 USDA average nest-run production cost was 4.5 percent higher than July 2019 at 59.9 cents per dozen.

  • August 2019 USDA benchmark nest-run loss decreased from July 2019 at 33.0 cents per dozen to 2.3 cents per dozen in August.

  • August national flock ( over 30,000 hens/farm) was down 1.3 million or 0.4 percent to 312.6 million.


Summary tables for the latest USDA August 2019 prices and flock statistics made available by the EIC on September 12th 2019 are arranged, summarized, tabulated and reviewed in comparison with values from the previous August 7th 2019 posting reflecting July 2019 cost and production data.


Egg Exports


Export of Shell Eggs and Products January-July 2019.

USDA-FAS data collated by USAPEEC, reflecting export volume and values for shell eggs and egg products are shown in the table below comparing the first seven months of 2019 with the corresponding period in 2018:-


Jan.-July 2018

Jan.-July 2019


Shell Eggs


Volume (m. dozen)



+12.3 (+19.4%)

Value ($ million)



-15.5 (-206%)

Unit Value ($/dozen)



-0.40 (-33.6%)

Egg Products




Volume (metric tons)



-1,542 (-9.6%)

Value ($ million)



-12.8 (-18.6%)

Unit Value ($/metric ton)



-411 (-11.4%)


Cal-Maine Foods Reports on Q4 and FY 2019


In a press release dated July 22nd Cal-Maine Foods (CALM) announced results for the 4th Quarter and Fiscal 2019 ending June 1st.

Results for CALM, a bellwether for U.S. shell-egg production and sales, reflect low unit revenue experienced by the entire industry resulting in unfavorable comparisons with Q4 of 2019.

The following table summarizes the results for the period compared with the values for the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal year (Values expressed as $ x 1,000 except EPS)

Quarter Ending

June 1st 2019

June 2nd 2018

Difference (%)





Gross profit:




Operating income:




Net Income




Diluted earnings per share:




Gross Margin (%)




Operating Margin (%)




Profit Margin (%)




Long-term Debt:




12 Months Trailing:


Return on Assets (%)



Return on Equity (%)



Operating Margin (%)



Profit Margin (%)



Total Assets




Market Capitalization



52-Week Range in Share Price: $36.65 to $51.55

Market Close July 19th $39.37 Post release July 22nd 10H00 $37.90

Forward P/E 63.1 Beta 0.5

For FY 2019 CALM earned $54.2 million on revenue of $1.36 billion generating an EPS of $1.12

Comparable values for FY 2018 were net profit, $125.9 million, revenue $1.50 billion and EPS $2.60.

In reviewing the CALM quarterly report the following calculated values* represent key data for the most recent Quarter. (Q4 Fiscal 2018 and difference in parentheses):-

  • Dozen shell eggs sold: 254,772,000 (251,955,000 +1.1)

  • Average selling price of all shell eggs: $1.08 per dozen; ($1.72 per dozen; -37.2%).

  • Average selling price of specialty eggs calculated from data released: $1.94 cents per dozen; ($1.95 per dozen; -0.5%).

  • Average selling price of generic eggs calculated from data released: $0.80 cents per dozen; ($1.64 cents per dozen; -50.0%).

  • Differential between generic and specialty eggs: $0.50 cents per dozen; ($0.31 per dozen; -61.3%)

  • Specialty eggs as a proportion of volume sold: 23.3%; (25.5%; -8.6%)

  • Specialty eggs as a proportion of sales value: 41.9%; (29.0%; +44.5%)

  • Proportion of eggs sold actually produced by Cal-Maine flocks: 87.3%; (85.6%; -2.0%).

  • Feed cost per dozen 41.1cents (41.6 cents)

*Assumes that 98 percent of sales value derived from shell eggs.

In commenting on results Dolph Baker, chairman and CEO of Cal-Maine Foods, Inc., stated, "our disappointing results for the fourth quarter reflect more challenging market conditions. The average market price in the Southeast for conventional eggs dropped 52.0 percent for the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to the fourth quarter of 2018 and was down 17.1 percent for the year.

He added "the unfavorable supply and demand balance and anticipated future egg supply growth trends have continued to affect market prices and our business. Over the past five quarters, we have noted our concern about the growing hatch rate pointing to a potential significant increase in laying hens and an oversupply of eggs. The USDA reported a near record high of 341.5 million hens as of April 1, 2019. While the hen numbers as of the June 2019 USDA report were down seasonally to 331.5 million, that level still represents approximately 2.9 million more hens than a year ago. The supply issue has been further pressured by a more productive flock, with the recent rate of lay up 2.0 percent to 77.9 eggs per hundred layers, and a 12.0 percent drop in exports of shell egg equivalents for the first five months of 2019. Additionally, the hatch rate continued to increase for the same period and was up 2.0 percent year over year through June 1, 2019. If these trends continue, we expect further pressure on market prices through calendar 2019.

"Specialty eggs, excluding co-pack sales, accounted for 23.3 percent of our sales volumes for the fourth quarter, compared with 25.5 percent a year ago. Specialty egg volumes were affected by the greater price differential between conventional and specialty eggs. However, specialty egg revenue was 41.9 percent of total shell egg revenue, compared with 29.0 percent for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2018, reflecting less volatility in the average selling price for specialty eggs. Specialty egg prices were down 1.2 percent for the fourth quarter but were up 0.8 percent for the year. We remain focused on growing our specialty egg business, including addressing the expected higher demand for cage-free eggs. We are working closely with our valued customers to meet this demand, and we will continue to offer a favorable product mix including cage-free and other specialty eggs.

"As announced in November 2018, California passed Proposition 12, which increased minimum space requirements per hen beginning in 2020 and mandates that all eggs and egg products sold in California must be cage-free by 2022. In line with this ruling and other industry changes, we are making the necessary investments in our operations to expand our cage-free capacity. Our previously announced projects in Utah, Texas and Florida are under way as scheduled, providing additional processing, pullet and cage-free capacity for approximately 6 million hens upon completion. The total expenditure for these new projects is projected to be approximately $187 million. As of June 1, 2019, including these new expansion projects, remaining projected costs expected to be incurred through February 2022 are approximately $167 million, which the Company expects to primarily finance with cash on hand, investments, and operating cash flow."