AgLetter: March 1997
U.S. meat production edged higher again last year, despite the dampening influence of high grain prices and feed costs. The latest figures from the U.S. Department of Agriculture show meat production rose 1.7 percent in 1996, marking the 14th consecutive year of expansion. However, last year’s increase fell short of the 2.6 percent compound annual rate of gain that has characterized the trend since 1982. And on a trade-adjusted basis, virtually all of last year’s gain in production was wiped out in terms of the output that was available for domestic consumers. Another below-trend rise in meat production is projected for this year.