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Animal Products

  • Finding

    Confined Livestock Operations Account For a Majority of the Chesapeake Bay Area’s Farmland With Applied Manure

    Excessive flows of nutrients into the Chesapeake Bay can damage the bay’s environment, yielding coastal dead zones, fish kills, and impaired drinking water supplies. Agriculture is a main contributor to nutrient run-off, responsible for 38 percent of the bay’s nitrogen and 45 percent of phosphorus loadings.
  • Feature

    Productivity Growth Slows for Specialized Hog Finishing Operations

    U.S. hog farm numbers dropped by 70 percent over 1991-2009 while hog inventories remained stable. The result has been an industry with larger hog enterprises, increased specialization in a single phase of production, greater reliance on purchased rather than homegrown feed, and greater use of production contracts. This structural change has led to higher productivity and lower pork prices.
  • Feature

    Solving Processing Issues a Key to Successful Local Meat Marketing

    Consumer demand for local food, including local meat and poultry, has risen in recent years. To sell meat, farmers need access to appropriately scaled processing facilities with the skills, inspection status, and reliability to prepare these products safely, legally, and to customer specifications. This report explores this multi-faceted problem and identifies fundamental causes.
  • Finding

    Productivity Gains Increase U.S. Commercial Pork Production

    Commercial pork production in the United States increased 174 percent from 1977 to 2012 from slaughtering more and bigger hogs. Public and private research and development during the period led to efficiency gains that have altered the structure of the pork industry.
  • Feature

    Long-Term Prospects for Agriculture Reflect Growing Demand for Food, Fiber, and Fuel

    Growing food demand in developing countries, rising biofuel demand, and slowing agricultural productivity gains have put upward pressure on farm-commodity prices over the past decade. According to USDA’s annual baseline projections, these and other factors will continue to influence prospects for U.S. and world agriculture over the next decade.
  • Finding

    Market Potential for U.S. Distillers’ Grains Exceeds Likely Supply Growth

    U.S. production of distillers’ grains (DGs) has quadrupled since 2004/05. For the foreseeable future, however, potential feed use of DGs in the U.S. will significantly exceed projected supply.
  • Statistic

    On the Map: Demand for U.S. Edible Pork Byproduct Exports Is High

    U.S. pork byproduct exports totaled $700 million in 2010, almost 15 percent of the total value of U.S. pork exports.
  • Finding

    Beef Cow-Calf Production a Lifestyle Choice Among Many Farmers

    The beef cow-calf industry is characterized by a large number of small farms on which beef cattle production is a secondary source of farm household income. This suggests that beef cow-calf production as a lifestyle choice is at least as important as earning a profit on many farms.
  • Statistic

    In the Long Run: Fewer Cows But More Milk Through 2020

    After a 4-year increase during 2005-08, milk cow numbers fell in 2009 and 2010 and are projected to continue year-to-year declines in 2012-20.
  • Statistic

    Indicators

    Indicators tables from the September 2010 issue of Amber Waves magazine.
  • Statistic

    Indicators

    Selected statistics on agriculture and trade, diet and health, natural resources, and rural America.
  • Statistic

    Research Areas

    Research area charts from the April 2008 issue of Amber Waves.
  • Finding

    Whey, Once a Marginal Byproduct, Comes Into Its Own

    Whey, a natural byproduct of cheese production, was once discarded or used as animal feed. Recently, however, it has been “discovered” by traders and food processors for its high protein content and other properties as a food additive. As a result, the price of whey, which fluctuated between 14 and 34 cents per pound from 1999 to mid-2006, reached an all-time high of 78 cents in April 2007, before falling to 43 cents in November 2007. In addition to benefiting from increases in domestic demand due to whey’s versatility as a food ingredient, whey prices have benefited from increased international demand, fueled by higher incomes and production shocks.
  • Statistic

    Indicators

    Indicators tables from the April 2008 issue of Amber Waves.