Egg Industry Statistics and Reports

Egg Projection


Updated May 2023 USDA Projection for U.S. Egg Production and Consumption.

On May 18th the USDA Economic Research Service issued updated values for egg production during 2022 with a projection for 2023 and a forecast for 2024. Production, consumption and prices were revised from the previous April 17th 2022 report.


Projected egg production for 2022 was unchanged from from the April Report at 7,781 million dozen This will be 3.1 percent lower than in 2021 due to depopulation of approximately 44 million hens infected with HPAI from early spring extending through mid-December 2022. The per capita consumption of shell eggs and liquids combined for 2022 was also unchanged at 279.0 eggs but down 3.5 eggs (1.2 percent) from 2021. The average 2022 benchmark New York bulk unit price was retained at 282 cents per dozen. This was 138 percent higher than in 2021 attributed to unseasonal high prices from the end of March through the 4th Quarter of 2022.


Subsequent USDA projections will provide greater clarity on the effect of HPAI together with the recovery of the post-COVID economy that is impacted by moderating inflation with a rise of 4.9 percent in the Consumer Price Index in April coupled with a 2.3 percent Producer Price Index for the month. Eggs represented a standout among foods despite retail price for conventional shell eggs up 55.4 percent from (pre-HPAI) February 2022 through February 2023. The 2023 Midwest cartoned price peaked at $5.17 per dozen on January 3rd 2013 but fell precipitously to a market bottom of $0.78 per dozen on May 8th.


Restoration in flock size is proceeding slowly, limited by the availability of pullet chicks for replacement and the rate of conversion to alternative housing systems. The cost of ingredients will influence margins and may result in cessation of production by some small-scale producers as margins shrink through summer. Unpredictable factors affecting price will include the extent of losses in the ongoing avian influenza epornitic that may undergo a resurgence late during the 3rd quarter of 2023 or thereafter; the supply and cost of ingredients as influenced by events in Ukraine and drought in South America; increasing export volume of eggs and the duration of current high domestic consumer demand.


The USDA projected that egg production in 2023 will be down >0.1 percent from the April Report to 7,969 million dozen with a per capita consumption of 285.1 eggs, down 0.6 egg or 0.2 percent from the April projection. 


The forecast for 2024 includes a production of 8,280 million dozen, up 3.9 percent from 2023. Consumption will attain 293.2 per capita up 8.1 eggs or 2.8 percent above the projection for 2023. This will naturally depress prices with the NY. Large price dropping by 43.9 cents per dozen or 23.3 percent from the average for 2023.


In 2022 egg exports as shell and products combined attained 226.5 million dozen shell-equivalents, or 4.3 percent of production, down 42.2 percent from 392.0 million dozen or 4.9 percent of production in 2021. During 2022 egg imports, some in shell form but predominantly products attained 25.9 million dozen shell-equivalents, up 42.8 percent from 14.9 million dozen in 2021. The forecast for 2023 is for 26.0 million dozen almost unchanged from 2022.


May 2023 data is shown in the table below:-













% Difference



Production (m. dozen)







Consumption (eggs per capita)







New York price c/doz.)








Source: Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook released May 18th 2023


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


USDA-WASDE FORECAST #636, May 12th 2023




The USDA projected values for the production of corn and soybeans in the May #636 edition of the WASDE to reflect proposed 2023 new crop values. These were presumably based on planting intentions, long-term projections of U.S. weather influenced by a transition to an El Nino, carry forward levels from 2022, export projections and ending stocks.


With respect to the World situation it is evident that the 2023 harvest of all crops in Ukraine, a major World supplier, will be reduced by at least one third compared with pre-invasion values. The situation in Ukraine has no short-term prospect for resolution despite initiation of ocean shipments through the Black Sea Grain Initiative. The intermediate-term prospect for this export route is questionable. Even if the agreement is extended, shipments will be subject to frequent obstruction by the Russian Federation.


The May 2023 WASDE projected corn and soybean harvest data for the 2023 season, with corn harvested from 84.1 million acres and soybeans from 86.7 million acres.


The May 2023 WASDE value for corn yield was projected at 181.5 bushels per acre. By comparison yield was 173.3 bushels per acre in 2022. The estimate of soybean yield was raised to 52.0 bushels per acre compared to 49.5 bushels per acre in 2022.


The May 2023 USDA projection for corn imports was 25 million bushels. The ending stock of corn was predicted to attain 2,222 million bushels despite higher exports during the new season. The USDA projected ending stock of soybeans at 325 million bushels due to increased crushing and lower exports.


The May 2023 WASDE projected the price of corn at $4.80 per bushel for the new crop. The projected price for soybeans was 1,210 cents per bushel. Soybean Meal was lower at $365 per ton. The USDA price projections for soybeans and soybean meal deviated widely as expected from the May 12th CME quotations for May delivery of corn and soybean meal respectively.


Projections included in the May 2023 WASDE report reflect the most recent estimates of commodity production in the Southern Hemisphere. Economists also evaluated the likely impacts of the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation with occupation of 20 percent of the Nation’s land area and following extensive destruction of infrastructure. It is evident that production and hence exports of wheat, corn and sunflower from Ukraine will be sharply reduced compared to recent annual averages. Compliance with the Black Sea agreement is in question notwithstanding a nominal 60-day extension in Mid-March.


It is accepted that USDA projections for export are also based on the perceived intentions and needs of China. This Nation has sharply curtailed purchases of commodities during the current market year despite drought and taking into effect relaxation of COVID restrictions on consumer and demand.


Reports on volumes of commodities exported are included in weekly editions of EGG-NEWS is derived from published USDA data.



Based on yield and acreage projections the corn harvest for 2022 was estimated at 15,265 million bushels compared to 13,730 million bushels in 2022. The U.S. 2023 harvest is projected to be 0.8 percent higher than the previous 2016 record harvest of 15,148 million bushels. The “Feed and Residual” category was projected at 5,650 million bushels, up 7.1 percent. The “Ethanol and Byproducts” Category will be 1.0 percent higher than for the 2022 crop to 5,300 million bushels consistent with estimated demand for E-10 and other blends. Gasoline consumption is restrained by prevailing high prices, general inflation and changes in commuting patterns persisting from COVID restrictions. Projected corn exports were raised 13.5 percent to 2,100 million bushels, based on recent orders, the volume of projected shipments to China and Mexico and taking into account the anticipated lower availability of coarse grains from Eastern Europe and drought in Argentine. Ending stocks in the May WASDE were projected at 2,222 million bushels up 65.6 percent from the 2022 crop.


The forecast USDA farm price for corn in the May 2023 WASDE Report for the new crop was 480 cents per bushel. At 13H00 on May 12th after release of the WASDE the CME quotation for May delivery was 634 cents per bushel, down 3.9 percent from the quotation on April 11th for April delivery and 32.1 percent below the May USDA projection.






Harvest Area

84.1 m acres (up 6.1%)

(92.0 m. acres planted, harvest corresponding to 91.4% of acres harvested)


181.5 bushels per acre

(Updated from 172.3 bushels per acre in the April WASDE for the old crop.)

Beginning Stocks

1,417 m. bushels



15,265 m. bushels



25 m. bushels


Total Supply

16,707 m. bushels

Proportion of Supply

Feed & Residual

5,650 m. bushels


Food & Seed

1,435 m bushels


Ethanol & Byproducts

5,300 m. bushels


Domestic Use

12,385 m. bushels



2,100 m. bushels


Ending Stocks

2,222 m. bushels

13.3 %

1 metric ton = 39.368 bushels


Average Farm Price: 480 cents per bushel. (Down 180 cents per bushel from the April WASDE Report reflecting the old crop)


Egg Week


USDA Weekly Egg Price and Inventory Report, May 10th 2023.


Market Overview

  • The average wholesale unit revenue values for Midwest Extra-large and Large sizes were lower this week by a relatively less impactful 19.0 percent on average, representing a lower than seasonal post-Easter value and continuing the precipitous decline over the previous five weeks. Mediums were down 19.3 percent with a 10 cent per dozen price differential from Large, indicating restoration in the balance between supply and demand in this size. This past week shell egg inventory was down 0.9 percent, compared to a rise of 0.8 percent last week. This is consistent with sharply lower wholesale prices and presumably higher demand despite prevailing shelf prices. Over the coming three weeks the volume of retail purchases will be influenced by lower seasonal demand. If chains reduce margins consistent with wholesale prices, higher demand can be anticipated. Eggs are now highly competitive in price against the comparable costs for other protein foods. From the last week in February through mid-December 2022 the producing flock was down on average by 20 million hens and now by 12 to 15 million as flocks are restored, to their pre-HPAI complement.
  • Total industry inventory was down by 1.6 percent overall this past week to 1.88 million cases with a concurrent 4.5 percent decrease in breaking stock attributed to more diversion to the shell market but with flagging post-Easter demand from food service and industry. This is suggested by lower prices for egg products. Wholesale prices compare with 2020 and 2021 also characterized by low ex-plant unit revenue. Benchmark prices are now far lower than for the corresponding week in 2022 influenced by flock depletions following HPAI.
  • It is now apparent that the inventory held by chains and other significant distributors may be more important over the short term in establishing wholesale price than the USDA regional inventory figures published weekly. This is probably the reason for sequential fluctuation in weekly industry stock. It is evident that the USDA has undercounted hens in the national flock leading up to Easter given the report of a 2.9 percent compensatory increase in the size of the national flock two weeks ago, accounting in part for sharply falling wholesale prices. The size of the producing flock was actually down 0.4 million hens this past week
  • Despite the depletion of flocks as a result of HPAI, relatively low unit revenue compared to pre-HPAI will now be a reality through May 2023. Sporadic outbreaks of HPAI are now less likely given that the seasonal Spring migration of waterfowl is completed. The number and extent of outbreaks cannot be assessed until more information is available concerning the molecular and field epidemiology 0f spring and fallvcases. The USDA has yet to identify modes of transmission for the 2022 epornitic including airborne spread. There have been no case-control studies released on possible deficiencies in biosecurity on affected complexes that presumably demonstrated specific risk factors. APHIS has been remiss in evaluating available data and providing timely practical guidance on prevention as evidenced by releasing a backdated report during the first week of March that was devoid of recommendations to prevent HPAI infection in flocks.
  • The current relationship between producers and chain buyers based on a single price discovery system constitutes an impediment to a free market. The benchmark price amplifies both downward and upward swings as evidenced over the past five weeks. The benchmark possibly functions to the detriment of the industry over the long term. A CME quotation based on Midwest Large, reflecting demand relative to supply would be more equitable. If feed cost is determined by CME ingredient prices then generic shell eggs should be subject to a Midwest Large quotation.
  • According to the USDA the U.S. flock in production was down 0.13 percent or 0.4 million hens to 303.6 million during the week ending May 10th. The flock in production includes about 4.0 million molted hens that resumed lay during the past week plus 4.0 million pullets attaining production.
  • The ex-farm price for breaking stock was down 8.9 percent this past week to 41 cents per dozen.Checks delivered to Midwest plants were down 13.5 percent to 32 cents per dozen. Prices for breaking stock will remain low until there is a reasonable increase in wholesale price.


The Week in Review



According to the USDA Egg Market News Reports released on May 8th the Midwest wholesale price (rounded to one cent) for Extra-large was down 18.7 percent to $0.79 per dozen. Large size was down 19.1 percent to $0.77 per dozen. The price for Medium size was down 19.3 percent to $0.67 per dozen as delivered to DCs. Prices should be compared to the USDA benchmark average 6-Region blended nest-run cost of 90.3 cents per dozen as revised by the EIC for April 2023. This excludes provisions for packing, packaging materials and transport, amounting to 47 cents per dozen in mid-2022, according to the EIC but now probably closer to 52 cents per dozen. Accordingly producers of generic shell eggs are operating with negative margins. The progression of prices during 2023 to date is depicted in the USDA chart reflecting three years of data, updated weekly.


Export of Shell Eggs and Products, January-March 2023.


Exports of shell eggs since March 2022 have been constrained by availability due to progressive and cumulative depletion of 44 million hens over 12 months as a result of HPAI with the national flock about 20 million hens constantly lower than the pre-HPAI complement. Sharp rises in price as a result of supply-demand disequilibrium made U.S. export prices uncompetitive as denoted by lower volumes over successive months. Egg products have also been impacted but to a lesser extent than shell eggs. During February 2023 shell and product exports combined represented 1.1 percent of total production. The export situation may now improve as domestic prices have fallen sharply to pre-HPAI levels. Restoration of volume presumes that lost markets can be reclaimed.


  USDA-FAS data collated by USAPEEC, reflecting export volume and values for shell eggs and egg products are shown in the table below comparing January-March 2022 with the corresponding months in 2023:-



   Jan. –March 2022  

   Jan.-March 2023


Shell Eggs




Volume (m. dozen)



   -3.7     ( -15.4%)

Value ($ million)



+28.3     ( +87.6%)

Unit Value ($/dozen)



+1.63     (+120.8%)

Egg Products




Volume (metric tons)



  -534      (-6.6%)

Value ($ million)



     +2      (+6.0%)

Unit Value ($/metric ton)



   +561    (+13.4%)








Shell egg exports from the U.S. during the 1st quarter of 2023 decreased by 15.4 percent in volume but gained 87.6 percent in total value compared to January-March 2022. Unit value was $1.63 per dozen higher to $2.98 per dozen compared to the corresponding months 2022.  For March 2023 volume was down 24.6 percent to 9.1 million dozen and value up by 79.2 percent to $30.1 million compared to March 2022.


Canada was the leading importer of shell eggs in January-March 2023, with 14.3 million dozen representing 70.4 percent of volume and 76.7 percent of the $60.6 million total value of U.S. shipments of shell eggs. Unit price in January-March 2023 was $2.98 per dozen compared to $1.35 per dozen for 24 million dozen in January-March 2022. During March 2023 Canada represented 79.1 percent of U.S. shell egg exports of 9.1 million dozen and 84.4 percent of the value amounting to $30.1 million. These figures were respectively 24.1 percent and 195.3 percent above corresponding volume and value for March 2022. The increase in imports by Canada is attributed to higher consumer demand and depletion of some domestic flocks due to HPAI. The controlled supply situation in Canada inhibits flexibility necessitating imports from the U.S.


During January-March 2023 the 2nd through 6th ranked nations with individual volumes of 0.4 (E.U.) to 1.6 million dozen (Bahamas) contributed to a collective 4.0 million dozen representing 19.7 percent of U.S. exports. This compares with 13.3 million dozen in January-March 2022. Value of exports for the five nations amounted to $8.4 million in January-March 2023 compared to $6.2 million for the first three months of 2022. Unit price for these importers averaged $2.16 per dozen, $0.64 below the March nest-run benchmark price of $2.74 per dozen excluding processing, inland transport and packaging. The trailing 12-month USDA benchmark price for nest-run large shell eggs was $2.70 per dozen


Hong Kong a traditional large-scale importer responsible for 21 percent of  shell egg imports in 2022 was not an importer in March and a distant 6th-ranked importer of U.S. shell eggs during January-February 2023.


* USDA 12-month trailing Benchmark nest-run unit prices per dozen: April 2022, $2.36; May, $2.09; June, $1.91; July, $2.71, August, $1.91; September $2.70; October $2.84; November, $3.40;  December $4.39; January 2023, $3.26; February, $2.13 and March, $2.74.




The total volume of exported egg products during January-March 2023 decreased 6.6 percent to 7,523 metric tons compared to January-March 2022. Total value of $35.5 million was lower by 6.0 percent compared to January-March 2022. Unit value increased by 13.4 percent to $4,719 per ton, up from the $4,158 received in January-March 2022. During 2022 the U.S. exported 25,306 metric tons of egg products valued at $115 million with a unit price of $4,572 per metric ton. Escalation in unit price reflects the composition of exports and the relationship between World supply and demand. Ukraine is now restrained in production but India was a significant exporter during the month. During March 2023 exports of egg products increased 35.8 percent to 3,807 metric tons and value by 33.4 percent to $14.2 million compared to the corresponding months in 2022.


Japan was the leading importer from the U.S. in January-March 2023 based on a value, with a volume of 2,297 metric tons valued at $12.0 million that represented 30.5 percent of volume and 33.8 percent of the total value of U.S. exports of egg products. This was an increase of 13.1 percent in volume and 41.2 percent value compared to January-March 2022. The unit value of $5,224 per metric ton compares with the average unit value for U.S. exports of all egg products at $4,719 per metric ton or $4,492 per metric ton without Japan. With the conclusion of a bilateral trade agreement the U.S. is no longer at a competitive disadvantage with respect to the E.U. In 2022 Japan imported 8,596 metric tons of egg products from the U.S., 27.2 percent less than in 2021.


Canada was the leading importer by volume and fourth in value among importers during January-March 2023, purchasing 2,787 metric tons comprising 37.1 percent of volume but 10.7 percent of value with a unit price of $1,363 per metric ton. Volumes shipped reflect restoration of the institutional and food service sectors and relative availability of domestic product in Canada.


Mexico was the 3rd ranked importer of egg products in January-March 2023 receiving 1,221 metric tons from the U.S. representing 16.2 percent of volume and 18.8 percent of value with a unit price of $5,487 per metric ton. Volume for January-March 2023 was up by 24.5 percent and value was higher by 81.1 percent compared to January-March 2022. Mexico imported 285 metric tons in March 2023 up 4.0 percent from March 2022.


During January-March 2023 South Korea imported 331 metric tons of egg products valued at $1.9 million down 76.0 percent in volume and 57.8 percent in value from January-March 2022. Most flocks in South Korea have been restored to production after depopulation following outbreaks of HPAI although along with Japan, seasonal cases of HPAI have been recently diagnosed. In 2022 South Korea imported 2,171 metric tons valued at $7.4 million and in 2021 5,113 metric tons valued at $13.2 million.





Exports of shell eggs and egg products to our USMCA neighbors were valued at $76.9 million in 2020. During 2021 the value of shell eggs and egg products attained $101.8 million or 32.7 percent of combined export value. Exports in 2022 amounted to $126.5 million in value equivalent to 47.5 percent of combined value. Over the 1st quarter of 2023 exports valued at $57 represented 59.3 percent of shell eggs and products shipped. Canada was 52.3 percent of the $96.1 value of exported shell eggs and products combined and 76.7 percent of the value of shell eggs during the first quarter of 2023 emphasizing our dependence on our USMCA partner.


Based on considerations including landed cost, logistics, USAPEEC promotional programs and availability, prospects for long-term exports of shell eggs will be limited by price  with disease considerations as a secondary factor. Exports will be dependent on the willingness of importers to accept the World Organization for Animal Health (WOAH=OIE) principle of regionalization in the event of outbreaks of exotic Newcastle disease or isolation of either H5 or H7 avian influenza (AI), in commercial flocks, irrespective of pathogenicity. Most importing nations are now applying regionalization and permitting imports on a zonal, county or state-exclusion basis following H5 or H7 AI infection. Canada and the U.S. operate according to a 2018 bilateral agreement to maintain trade in the event of outbreaks of catastrophic exotic diseases including HPAI and END.


With the ongoing and intensifying conflict in Ukraine, egg liquid exports from that Nation have declined sharply in the intermediate term but availability from the U.S. will constrain exports.


Generally pasteurized egg products should not be subject to any embargo imposed following reports of AI or Newcastle disease in a region.



Crop Progress


Status of 2023 Corn and Soybean Crops


The USDA Crop Progress Report released on May 1st documented corn and soybean planting in 2023. Soybeans are are ahead of the five-year average but corn is consistent with the average rate.


Subsoil and surface moisture levels were higher than the corresponding weeks in 2022 expediting planting. Although conditions were generally favorable for planting, some areas in the Northern plains still have significant snow accumulation that will delay planting due to excessive surface moisture from snow melt. EGG-NEWS will report on the progress of the two major crops as monitored by the USDA through the end of the 2023 harvest in November.


Reference is made to the April 11th WASDE Report #635 retrievable under the STATISTICS tab and the weekly Commodity and Energy Report documenting prospective plantings in this edition.




April 16th 2023

April 23rd 2023

5-Year Average

Corn Planted (%)




Corn Emerged (%)




Soybeans planted (%)





Crop Condition

V. Poor





Corn 2023 (%)

Corn 2022 (%)

Soybeans 2023 (%)

Soybeans 2022 (%)


V. Short




Topsoil moisture: Past Week





Past Year





Subsoil moisture: Past Week





Past Year







Cage-Free Report


USDA Data On Cage-Free Production For April 2023


EGG-NEWS summarizes and comments on data and trends in the monthly USDA Cage-Free Report, correlating and interpreting the data posted weekly in the Egg Weekly Price and Inventory Report in EGG-NEWS mailed on Fridays each week.


The USDA Cage-Free Report for April 2023, released on May 1st 2023, documented a 3.4 percent increase in the complement of hens producing under the Certified Organic Program to 18.2 million (rounded to 0.1 million). The number of hens classified as cage-free (but excluding Certified Organic) and comprising aviary, barn and other systems of housing was up 1.0 percent from March 2023 to 103.2 million. For March 2023 USDA reported a two-month increase of 8.4 million hens, considered unrealistic for a single month suggesting an undercount over recent previous months. Comparable hen values posted by the USDA over successive months are questioned given the continuing cycle of placing pullets, expansion of facilities and depletion of old hens, with no depopulation in 2023 due to HPAI and with limited application of molting. The respective numbers of hens claimed for organic and cage-free flocks should reflect the realities of supply and demand in the market over successive quarters.


Average weekly egg production for Certified Organic in April 2023 was up by 4.4 percent compared to March 2023 with a hen-month average production of 82.5 percent in April. Average weekly flock production for cage free flocks other than Certified Organic was up in April 2023 by 1.7 percent over March 2023 with an average hen month production of 81.4 percent in April. Seasonally, younger flocks increase the availability of cage-free and organic eggs in response to pullet chick placements laid down 22 weeks previously in anticipation of peak seasonal demand periods. Average flock production in April 2023 should not have included any depopulation due to HPAI, but reflected a number of older flocks some of which were previously molted together with the relatively higher production from pullet chicks placed during October 2022.


Flock Size Average

(million hens)







Q1- 2023


Q4 - 2022


Q3 - 2022


Q2 - 2022

Certified Organic







Cage-Free Hens







Total Non-Caged









Average Weekly Production (cases)





Certified Organic @ 82.5% hen/day


   291,980     +4.4%

Cage-Free @ 81.4% hen/day


1,633,213      +1.7%

Total Non-Caged @ 81.6% hen/day


1,925,193     +2.2%


Average Nest Run Contract Price Cage-Free Brown

$1.68/doz.   (May ‘22 through March ‘23:  $1.64)

April Range:

$1.35 to $2.35/doz. (unchanged from March)

FOB Negotiated April price, grade quality, nest-run.  Loose.     Price range $0.75 to $1.75 per dozen

Average April 2023 Value of $1.10/doz.

($3.00/doz. March)     


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

$3.50/doz. April 2023 (3 regions only)

(was $4.15/doz. March 2023)

USDA Based on 3-Regions* (excluding SC, NW & SW)

 High: $3.50/doz. (SE & NE)

 Low:  $3.49/doz. (MW)


*Comprises 523 stores.


Negotiated nest-run gradeable cage-free price for April 2023 averaged $1.10 per dozen down by 63.0 percent from $3.00 per dozen in March 2023 reflecting lower demand relative to supply and a sharp restoration of seasonal wholesale prices. The April 2023 advertised U.S. retail price for cage-free eggs over three regions was $3.50 per dozen.    


The apparent disparity between a recorded wholesale price of $1.10 per dozen plus a provision of 55 cents per dozen for packaging and packing and an average 3-region retail price of $3.50 indicates a retail margin of 52.1 percent. Chains that are maximizing margins especially on Certified Organic, free-range and pastured categories restrict volume of sales that is disadvantageous to producers.


Based on the importance of cage-free production, the USDA-AMS issue the Cage-Free report on volumes and prices at monthly intervals for the information of Industry stakeholders. There is obvious doubt as to the accuracy of individual monthly flock numbers especially when reports show a marked change at the end of a quarter or from the previous month or in past years, or alternatively no change in the cage-free flock for sequential months. It is suggested that USDA should consider a quarterly report with more accurate and consistent hen data. This would be more useful to the industry for planning and marketing decisions. Price data is available each week from other USDA reports.


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




Weekly Commodity and Energy Report: April 13th 2023.


At 14H00 on April 13th CME corn was up 0.9 percent compared to the previous week to 657 cents per bushel despite higher ethanol demand and increased export orders. Soybeans were up 0.9 percent from last week to 1,507 cents per bushel for May delivery. Soybean meal was 3.3 percent higher to $464 per ton for May delivery but price will fluctuate to reflect the price of soybeans and demand for oil. The market has now accepted projections of crop size and higher stocks as documented in the April 11th WASDE Report but is anticipating more focused planting intentions.  Commodity exports that rose this past week were unaffected by a fractional fall in the Dollar Index to 101.6. 

WTI was 3.3 percent higher at $83.09 per barrel on April 12th at close of trading following an announcement of a production cut by OPEC.


Factors influencing commodity prices in either direction over the past four

 weeks included:-

  • A mild U.S. recession in 2023 appears more likely following turbulence in the bank sector in the U.S. and Europe. The Federal Reserve increased the benchmark interest rate by 25 basis points at the March 22nd FOMC Meeting despite data indicating a gradual decline in inflation. This action was taken against evidence that progressively higher rates are stressing banks. Two failures occurred mid-March, albeit in mismanaged institutions. On March 30th the Bureau of Economic Analysis issued a revised Real GDP of 2.6 percent for the fourth quarter of 2022. This value is based on increased consumer spending offset by lower investment in housing and a 0.6 percent increase in personal income. The March 2023 CPI (up 5.0 percent) and February WPI (up 3.9 percent) were lower than forecast. Mid-March initial jobless claims were adjusted upward to 250,000 due to layoffs but offset by job creation mounting to 236,000 for the week as documented by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The March Producer price Index was up 2.7 percent year-over-year and 0.5 percent down from February. These values were lower than expected confirming a cooling in the U.S. economy (Transitory downward pressure on markets)
  • It is evident that polarization in the closely divided chambers of Congress will result in conflict over raising the debt ceiling and agricultural legislation including the 2023 Farm Bill that includes SNAP and other entitlements as a high proportion of the total Bill. (Ultimately, downward pressure).
  • Geopolitical tensions that impact wheat, corn, oilseeds and vegetable oil exports from Ukraine persist. Extension of the Black Sea Grain Initiative for an additional 60 days was accepted by the Russian Federation on March 18th against undisclosed concessions on sanctions. (Downward pressure on corn and wheat and an indirect effect on soybeans if Black Sea shipping is interrupted.)
  • The April 11th WASDE documented unchanged soybean and grain production compared to March with reduced exports from Argentine due to drought. The U.S. will export 12 percent of old crop corn resulting in stable ending stocks. Soybean exports will comprise 44 percent of the old crop with no change in ending stocks and a stable predicted price from March. (Lower domestic prices)
  • There is an expectation that Brazil will attain a record soybean harvest of 153 million metric tons with export of 93 million metric tons. Corn harvests from Brazil for the 2022-2023 season will be higher than the previous season although recent dry weather will reduce yields. Corn exports will attain 50 million metric tons (Lower prices in the future subject to favorable reports on crop progress and actual harvests)
  • The Dollar Index (DXY) has ranged from 99 to 116 over 52 weeks but has recently shown less volatility with a recent downward trend. The DXY was 101.6 on April 12th. The dollar index influences timing and volume of export orders. (Fluctuation in corn and soybean prices, high value depresses U.S. sales)



The FAS Export Report released on April 13th for the week ending April 6th reflecting market year 2022-2023, confirmed that outstanding export orders for corn amounted to 16.4 million metric tons (647.2 million bushels) with 21.3 million metric tons (838.3 million bushels) actually shipped. Net orders for the past week covering the 2022-2023 market year attained 0.5 million metric tons (20.7 million bushels) with 0.9 million metric tons (36.1 million bushels) shipped over the past working week. For the current market year outstanding sales of corn to date are 39.8 percent lower than for the corresponding week a year ago. For market year 2023-2024 outstanding sales this week amounted to 2.0 million metric tons (78.7 million bushels), with no orders for the 2023-2024-market year. (Conversion 39.36 bushels per metric ton)


The FAS Export Report for the week ending April 6th reflecting market year 2022-2023, recorded outstanding export orders for soybeans amounting to 4.5 million metric tons (166.5 million bushels) with 45.7 million metric tons (1,681 million bushels) actually shipped. Net weekly soybean orders attained 0.36 million metric tons (13.4 million bushels) with 0.7 million metric tons (25.1 million bushels) shipped for the past week. For the current market year to date outstanding sales of soybeans are 1.4 percent higher than for the corresponding week a year ago. Sales recorded for market year 2023-2024 amounted to 1.8 million metric tons (64.9 million bushels) with sales of 66,000 metric tons (2.4 million bushels) this past week. (Conversion 36.74 bushels per metric ton)


For the week ending April 6th 2022 net orders of soybean meal and cake amounted to 255,200 metric tons for the market year 2022-2023. During the past week 198,500 metric tons of meal and cake combined was shipped, representing 3.0 percent of the total 6,522,500 metric tons exported during the current marketing year. This quantity is 1.3 percent higher than the volume for the corresponding weeks of the previous market year. For the next market year outstanding sales attained 343,500 million metric tons with 37,500 metric tons sold this past week.


  • The annual 2023 USDA Prospective Plantings Report, released on March 31st predicted:-Corn area planted for all purposes in 2023 will attain 92.0 million acres, up 4 percent or 3.42 million acres from last year. Compared with last year, planted acreage is expected to be up or unchanged in 40 of the 48 estimating States.
  • Soybean area planted for 2023 is estimated at 87.5 million acres, up slightly from last year. Compared with last year, planted acreage is up or unchanged in 15 of the 29 estimating States.


The preference for corn is based on a favorable corn to soy benefit ratio.


USDA Grain Stocks Report


The USDA quarterly Grain Stocks Report released on Mzrch 31st 2023, documented storage of the major commodities, classified according to on-site and remote facilities including elevators and commercial installations. Quantities of corn and soybeans, the two major commodities relevant to the cost of poultry production were:-



Corn stocks in all positions on March 1st 2023 totaled 7.40 billion bushels, down 5 percent from March 1st 2022. Of the total stocks, 4.11 billion bushels were stored on farms, up 1 percent from a year earlier. Off-farm stocks, at 3.29 billion bushels, are down 10 percent from a year ago. The December 2022 - February 2023 indicated disappearance is 3.42 billion bushels, compared with 3.88 billion bushels during the same period last year.



Soybeans stored in all positions on March 1st 2023 totaled 1.69 billion bushels, down 13 percent from March 1st 2022. Soybean stocks stored on farms are estimated at 750 million bushels, down slightly from a year ago. Off-farm stocks, at 936 million bushels, are down 21 percent from last March. Indicated disappearance for the December 2022 - February 2023 quarter totaled 1.34 billion bushels, up 11 percent from the same period a year earlier.


Prices and commentary are incorporated in the Weekly Commodity and Energy Report in this edition and a summary of the WASDE #634 released on March 8th  are retrievable under the STATISTICS tab.


USDA-ERS Predicts Egg Prices for 2023


According to USDA economists, retail egg prices increased by 8.5 percent in January 2023, approximately 70.1 percent above January 2022.  The USDA-ERS now predicts that egg prices will increase by 37.8 percent in 2023 but with a wide range of 18.3 to 62.3 percent attributed to volatility.  Concurrently the USDA-ERS predicted a 4.7 percent increase in the price of meats, 7.2 percent for dairy products and 12.8 percent for cereals and bakery products.


Wholesale farm-level egg prices are predicted to increase by 7.4 percent in 2023 with a wide prediction interval of -32.6 to 76.1 percent.  Egg prices are extremely volatile, complicating reliable predictions.


EGG-NEWS will monitor weekly USDA wholesale prices by region and average retail prices to document retail margins.


USDA Agricultural Prices Report


THE USDA Agricultural Prices Report released December 30th 2022 posted November prices for agricultural commodities and expenditures.


The USDA ERS summarised prices as follows:-


Egg-News“The November Prices Received Index (2011 as a base) for Agricultural Production was 133.4, an increase of 4.5 percent from October 2022 and 23 percent from November 2021. At 127.1, the Crop Production Index was up 4.3 percent from last month and 19 percent from the previous year. The Livestock Production Index, at 143.4, increased 3.2 percent from October and 30 percent from November last year. Producers received higher prices during November for lettuce, soybeans, market eggs and cattle but lower prices for hogs, hay, milk, and cotton. In addition to prices, the volume change of commodities marketed also influences the indexes. In November, there was increased monthly movement for corn, milk, cattle, and cotton and decreased marketing of soybeans, grapes, lettuce, and wheat.”


“The November Prices Paid Index for Commodities and Services, Interest, Taxes, and Farm Wage Rates (PPITW), at 137.1, was unchanged from October 2022 but up 11 percent from November 2021. Higher prices for feeder cattle, feeder pigs, concentrates, and nitrogen offset lower prices for other services, hay and forages, complete feeds, and other machinery”.

Corn farmers received $6.49 per bushel in November 2022 compared to $5.26 per bushel in November 2021, up 23.4 percent.


Soybean farmers received $14.00 per bushel in November 2022 compared to $12.10 per bushel in November 2021, up 15.7 percent.


Egg farmers received $3.34 per dozen for table eggs in November 2022 compared to $1.09 per dozen in November 2022, up 206.4 percent. The sharp year-on-year increase is attributed to disequilibrium between supply and demand. Highly pathogenic avian influenza resulted in depletion of 44 million hens with a reduction of 20 million producing birds in the supply flock on average from mid 2022 onwards. This situation was coupled with increased demand as consumers increased purchases of eggs representing a competitively priced protein source in an inflationary environment.


2022 Corn and Soybean Harvest Report


The USDA Crop Progress Report released on November 14th documented continued progress in harvesting both soybean and corn crops as the season winds down.


Corn is 8 percent ahead of the 4-year average having advanced 6 percent during the past week. The harvest in 2022 is three percent ahead of the corresponding week in 2021.


The soybean harvest advanced 2 percent to 96 percent, 5 percent ahead of both the 4-year average and the corresponding week in 2021.


EGG-NEWS will report on the progress of the two major crops as monitored by the USDA through the remainder of November.           



October 16th

October 23rd

4-Year Average

Corn Dented (%)

Corn Mature (%)

Corn Harvested (%)










Soybeans Setting Pods (%)

Soybeans Dropping Leaves (%)

Soybeans Harvested (%)










The November 9th WASDE #630 estimated the average U.S corn yield at 172.3 bushels per acre (176.7 bushels per acre in 2021) with a 2022 harvest of 13,930 million bushels. The soybean yield was projected at 50.2 bushels per acre (51.7 bushels per acre in 2021) with a 2022 harvest of 4,346 million bushels.


The November WASDE #630 is retrievable under the STATISTICS Tab.