Farmer's Report

Chicken Trends - OCTOBER 15, 2021

Poultry market information is from the week of October 10, 2021.

Urner Barry reports that frozen chicken wing inventory is at the lowest levels since 2012. Urner Barry also reports that fresh boneless chicken leg meat prices continue to be at record highs.

This week, the boneless breast, tender and wing markets have taken deep declines, as analysts have been forecasting. Analysts are now forecasting continued price decreases in breasts, tenders and wings through December. Analysts indicate that the thigh meat category is under pressure. Industry analysts report that continued labor issues are hampering production in Further Processing facilities, resulting in additional supply of boneless breast, tenders and jumbo cut wings being offered in the spot markets. Analysts report that continued Saturday production, along with dampened demand, will put additional pressure on pricing in the short term.

Broiler-Type Eggs Set in the United States Up 7%

Hatcheries in the United States weekly program set 231 million eggs in incubators during the week ending October 9, 2021, up 7% from a year ago. Average hatchability for chicks hatched during the week in the United States was 79.6%. Average hatchability is calculated by dividing chicks hatched during the week by eggs set three weeks earlier.

Broiler-Type Chicks Placed in the United States Down 2%

Broiler growers in the United States weekly program placed 178 million chicks for meat production for the week ending October 9, 2021, down 2% from a year ago. Cumulative placements for the weeks ending January 9 through October 9, 2021 for the United States were 7.44 billion. Cumulative placements were up slightly from the same period a year earlier.


Analysts report that small bird demand is steady, with pricing inclining slightly. The markets for larger-size whole birds and WOGs are in a balanced position, according to analysts.


Small and medium boneless breast pricing remained unchanged this week. Jumbo breast meat prices decreased. Although the jumbo pricing declined, there was very little additional product that surfaced. Small and medium breasts are in solid shape, with very little additional product showing up in the marketplace. Analysts expect the select breast meat markets to trend flat to potentially upward in the near term. Analysts suggest that the jumbo and medium markets will decline in the near term, as demand softens going into the fall months.

The select and jumbo tender markets declined this week. Analysts expect these markets to trend downward as we go into the fall season. Spot load offerings of small fresh tenders have been limited this week. Analysts expect the jumbo market to trend in the same direction as jumbo boneless breasts, with continued declines in Q4. Limited frozen offers of jumbo tenders have surfaced this week, as processors prefer to sell any additional product in the fresh form.


Pricing for small and medium wings remained unchanged this week, but jumbo wings declined. Analysts indicate jumbo wings may still show strength going into football season, so this decline may be short-lived. They also predict these markets will be lower during Q4. Spot offers of small and medium whole wings have been uncovered, with attractive pricing. Spot offers on jumbo wings have been uncovered again this week, with highly discounted pricing.


The boneless, skinless thigh meat market was under pressure this week. Spot offerings of boneless thighs have surfaced at heavier discounted pricing. Analysts have forecasted this market to trend flat to downward during the 4th quarter of 2021.

The data contained in the Farmer’s Report is provided for informational purposes only, is not tailored to your specific purchasing needs, and is not intended as a substitute for any other publicly-available market data or information. The Farmer’s Report is compiled from the last-received market data provided by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and/or other market sources, and is subject to change without notice. Nothing herein is the opinion of US Foods®. US Foods neither assumes any legal liability nor makes any warranty or guaranty, either express or implied, regarding the completeness, accuracy or usefulness of this information.