April 21, 2020
Brazil chicken production set to drop due to COVID-19
Brazilian meat association ABPA said chicken production has dropped in the first quarter of this year, with further production cuts expected due to COVID-19, reported Reuters.
Between January to March 2020, ABPA said there was a slight drop in chicken output as COVID-19 affected the domestic market.
According to an industry source, Brazilian chicken farmers are cutting down production by keeping fewer birds. Additionally, farmers are slaughtering mother hens earlier at 55 to 58 weeks (normally 66 weeks lifespan) so fewer chicks are produced. This could result in lower chicken meat production after 7 to 10 weeks.
BRF SA chief executive said chicken housing is decided through a company's processing capacity. BRF SA is Brazil's biggest chicken processor and obtains supplies through integrated farmers..
He said a facility's production capacity can be affected if workers from an area are infected with COVID-19, similar to what is happening currently in the United States.
ABPA said export markets have stayed strong.
The earlier industry source told Reuters that there might be a 3% to 5% drop in poultry output after two months, but said this is only temporary as the production base is the same. There was no comment from ABPA regarding a possible chicken output decrease.
Cepea, an applied economics center at São Paulo University said in São Paulo state, frozen chicken prices showed a monthly drop of 13.8%.