Pork market information is from the week ending March 17, 2023.
The USDA reported a weekly hog harvest of 2.492 MM hogs last week. This level is marginally lower than the previous week, and roughly 2-3% higher than the same week last year.
The loin complex reversed, as boneless loins moved down and bone-in loins moved up. Demand for loins is traditionally lower in cold-weather months, but can vary, depending on promotional activity and/or exports, according to analysts.
The pork tenderloin market continued to trade lower. Trading has been bearish over the past several weeks, likely a result of sufficient supply and inconsistent demand, analysts said. Demand for pork tenderloins is generally lackluster until warm weather arrives, according to analysts.
The bone-in pork butt market reversed and moved lower. Traditionally, the pork butt markets move higher into the warmer weather months.
Backribs and whole spareribs moved up, while only the St. Louis-style sparerib moved down. Traditionally, fresh supply will decline in the coming months, as product is allocated to freezers for forward bookings for summertime demand. Frozen supply is very healthy, according to analysts.
The pork belly composite moved lower. Stronger seasonal demand should begin to ramp up soon, according to analysts. The USDA continues to report healthy levels of pork bellies in cold storage, which could temper gains. The belly markets are considered a value, according to analysts, as prices are currently below the five-year average, as well as below last year’s prices.
Light hams continued to move up, while heavy hams reversed course by moving lower. Forward demand for Easter and Cinco de Mayo is likely beginning to decline, according to analysts. Traditionally, the ham markets ebb and flow over the next several months.
The pork trimming markets moved lower. Historically, both markets begin to move consistently higher into spring and summer.
Bone-in picnics continued to move higher, while boneless picnics moved lower. The bone-in picnic market has continued to recover remarkably well since the sharp correction in January, according to analysts. Boneless picnic demand is steady, but has historically increased as the weather warms up.
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.