Board's Pork Demand Goals Set the Bar High
The National Pork Board’s five-year strategic plan,
developed in 2009, and officially adopted one year ago, includes four
key metrics regarding consumer pork demand. They are:
1. A 10% increase in real per capita domestic consumer
expenditures for pork, using 2009 as a baseline, by 2014.
2. Increase consumer awareness of how to cook pork in a way that results
in a juicy, tender and flavorful experience as measured by a 10%
improvement in a national market survey between 2009 and 2014.
3. Increase U.S. annual “eatings” per capita of fresh pork, as
measured by the NPD Group’s National Eating Trends data, by 10% from
2009 to 2014. For more on NPD Group’s market research, go to: www.npd.com/corpServlet?nextpage=corp_welcome.html.
4. Increase the U.S. share of global pork exports annually between 2009
and 2014 to 37%.
Those are pretty well-crafted goals, I think. They recognize a key
barrier (cooking), the fact that people must actually eat pork (eatings)
and the issue of how much people are willing to pay (expenditures), as
well as a key global metric.
Goal 2 addresses what we have long believed to be a major detriment to
consumer’s pork demand – the inability to cook pork properly. The
majority of that inability, we still believe, is mama’s or grandma’s
admonition that there is “something in there that needs to be
killed,” referring, of course, to trichinae. At one time, I argued
that the bigger issue was that no one actually wanted to cook. That may
still be the case, but it appears that the Food Network, Guy Fieri,
Emeril and others may have rekindled an interest in cooking in the past
few years, so we may be at a teachable moment. Still, I fear that our
products, especially those from the loin, are a challenge to many
kitchen warriors, primarily because they are so lean. Pumping and
basting and marinating help, but can they overcome the troika of
leanness, lack of knowledge and “kill-whatever-it-is” mentality?
Maybe, but I will continue to admonish breeders and producers to improve
pork muscle quality. Take the initiative instead of forcing your
customers to be perfect in their attempts at culinary mastery.
Exports Remain Strong
The positive trend for U.S. pork exports continued through
November with strong results in the top three markets – Mexico, Japan
and China/Hong Kong – and higher returns on a per-head basis.
Total U.S. pork exports (muscle cuts plus variety meat) for the month of
November increased 4.5% in volume over year-ago levels to 177,203 metric
tons (390.7 million pounds), but the value of those exports jumped 15.5%
to $443.4 million.
For the year as a whole, the volume of pork exports is up 2% to 1.7
million metric tons (3.8 billion pounds), but the value of those exports
is up 10% to $4.3 billion.
Exports accounted for 23.8% of November production with a per-head
export value of $44.80. One year ago, exports accounted for 24% of
production and $40.92/head.
Mexico continues to be the volume leader for U.S. pork exports and
November was a banner month. The volume of exports jumped 28.3% to
53,699 metric tons (118.4 million pounds) compared to November 2009, but
the value of those exports jumped 44.3% to $95.3 million.
Soybean Projections Trimmed
USDA has lowered its forecast of corn and soybean
production and stocks in its “Crop Production 2010 Summary.” Corn
production totaled 12.4 billion bushels, down 5% from last year’s
record high. This is a reduction of 93 million bushels from its earlier
projection. Corn yield for 2010 is estimated at 152.8 bu./acre, down
11.9 bu./acre from 2009. Corn ending stocks are estimated at 745
million bushels. The stock-to-use ratio is projected at 5.5%, the
lowest level since the 1995-1996 marketing year. USDA estimates the
average corn price for the year ending in September in the range of
$4.90 to $5.70. Soybean production is estimated at 3.33 billion
bushels, down 1% from the record of 2009. The average soybean yield for
2010 is estimated at 43.5 bu./acre. Soybean prices are estimated at
$11.20 to $12.20/bu.
Markets Offer U.S. Trade Growth
Iowa State University Professor of Economics and Finance
Dermot Hayes embarks today (Jan. 18) on a trip to Bejing, China to
provide research support to efforts to open the vast Chinese market to
U.S. pork exports.
Inflation that has pushed up food prices by 11%, land-use policies that
are growing cities and forcing farmers off the land, causing China’s
livestock farms to buy commercial feedgrains, have combined
simultaneously to make U.S. pork a good buy – once policy issues can
The United States is in a good position to supply the Chinese market,
Hayes says. In the summer of 2008, the Chinese purchased ½ of 1% of
U.S. pork production during the Summer Olympics, boosting live U.S. hog
prices by $12/head. “As a result of that, our pork industry didn’t
contract as much as some of our competitors; Canada, for instance, saw a
fast rise in production costs but didn’t have our export markets to
help balance that out.”
Jan. 25-27, 2011: Iowa Pork Producers
Association Annual Meeting and Iowa Pork Congress, Iowa Events Center,
Des Moines, IA; for exhibitor information, contact Doug Fricke by
or call (515) 225-7675; for seminar information, contact Tyler Bettin
by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or call
Jan. 31, Feb. 7 and 14, 2011: Employee Management
Workshop for Agricultural Operations (three-part workshop), Hardin
County Extension Office, Iowa Falls, IA; for more information contact:
Russ Euken, extension livestock specialist by phone (641) 923-2856 or
e-mail email@example.com or
Mark Storlie, swine field specialist, by phone (563) 425-3331 or e-mail
Feb. 1-2, 2011: Illinois Pork Expo, Peoria Civic
Center, Peoria, Ill; contact: Illinois Pork Producers Association at
(217) 529-3100 or go to www.ilpork.com.
Feb. 1, 8 and 15, 2011: Employee Management Workshop
for Agricultural Operations (three-part workshop), Amana Colonies
Clarion Inn, Williamsburg, IA; for more information contact: Russ
Euken, extension livestock specialist; by phone (641) 923-2856 or
e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or
Mark Storlie, swine field specialist by phone (563) 425-3331 or e-mail:
NPPC works diligently to protect and promote the interests of
America’s pork producers who in turn provide safe, nutritious pork to
domestic and foreign markets, generating thousands of jobs and more than
$30 billion of gross national product to the U.S. economy.
to see how NPPC is working for you.
3FLEX™ is the only combination package with
Porcine Circovirus, Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and Porcine Reproductive
and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) vaccines that are USDA-approved for
mixing and administering in one shot.
For a limited time, we’re offering a $25 rebate on
every purchase of Nuflor® Type B Medicated Feed
Nuflor® Type B delivers fast-acting power against swine
respiratory disease without requiring a federal feed mill license.
To take advantage of this limited-time offer, click here