FarmEcon LLC Monthly Turkey Supply-Use Tracker
Based on USDA data, monthly supply and use trends for the U.S. turkey industry are shown below. This information will be updated on about the 5th of the month after the last data pieces, export and import tonnage, are published by USDA.
These charts show annualized data for domestic use, total domestic and export use, and the major components that go into the use statistics. All data are taken from the USDA sources noted. This information is supplied gratis to the turkey industry as a sincere thank you for all the incredible support given to FarmEcon LLC since 2003.
Updates: This update was published on February 7, 2019.
This will be the final update for this page.
Overview - Domestic and total monthly turkey use
Detailed components of domestic and total monthly turkey use
Another way of looking at stocks is how much is in frozen inventory relative to total monthly use. The lower the value, the tighter are the stocks relative to use. The statistic is calculated as:
Monthly total frozen stocks
÷ Monthly turkey total use
x Number of days in the month.
Example - Stocks are 300 million pounds, total use is 500 million pounds, and there are 30 days in the month.
300 ÷ 500 X 30 = 18 days of use in inventory.
Comments: There is, naturally, significant seasonality to the statistic. During the year millions of pounds of frozen whole bird stocks are put back for the holiday season, then sold mainly in October-November. The typical peak stocks are in June or July at about 35 to 40 days. Peak stocks declined since 2017, reaching 2013 levels in 2019. After the peak frozen birds start to move to retail freezer space, and disappear from the USDA Cold Storage Report. The seasonal low is always November, and generally around 10 days. The 2019 low matched pre-HPAI at 10 days.
In addition to total frozen stocks, USDA also publishes monthly estimates of several categories of turkey cuts and whole birds. These data are shown in the graph below:
Comments: Frozen breasts are mostly a product from heavy toms. High levels of breast and whole tom stocks since 2015 have an indication of a supply-demand imbalance in this key white meat turkey sub-market. Similarly, the relatively small 2016-2018 increases in hen stocks also reflect a minor holiday whole bird supply-demand imbalance. Whole bird stocks have come down to pre-HPAI levels. All of the stocks declines have originated with lower production.
Comments: Almost all of the chilled cuts and whole birds go to Mexico. All post-HPAI product exports dropped off, but Mexico chilled cuts volume has held up much better than the rest of the world. Overall, 2018 exports were little-changed from 2017.
Comments: Mexico accounts for about half of U.S. turkey exports. Exports have not recovered in many smaller volume markets and China. In 2012 and 2013 China imported over 40,000 tons of U.S. turkey. Imports since the 2015 HPAI outbreak have been zero. China has now restored market access raising hopes for resumed exports into this market. Cuba and Russia, at one time also significant markets, have also not resumed U.S. turkey imports while volume to the Philippines has also dwindled.