Turkey Sector: Background & Statistics

Turkey meat production in the United States over the first eight months of 2016 totaled nearly 4 billion pounds, approximately 7 percent above the same period in 2015. The increase was largely based on continuing recovery from the 2015 loss of more than 7 million turkeys due to avian influenza (HPAI). 2016 production was expected to be the first year-over-year production growth since 2012 according to forecasts released in October 2016.

Through September, 2016 prices for whole birds at wholesale remained above the trend prior to the 2015 HPAI outbreak. The September price for frozen turkey hens was $1.24 per pound, about 14 percent higher than the average September price in the 3 years prior to 2015. Retail prices for whole turkeys in 2015 and 2016, however, did not generally experience a similar increase, and the 2015 annual average was the lowest since 2010.

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Production, Consumption, and Trade

Value of turkey production:

  • 2012: $5.45 billion
  • 2013: $4.84 billion
  • 2014: $5.30 billion
  • 2015: $5.71 billion

Data are reported annually in the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) Poultry-Production and Value report.

U.S. turkey meat production (ready-to-cook weight):

  • 2012: 5.97 billion pounds
  • 2013: 5.81 billion pounds
  • 2014: 5.76 billion pounds
  • 2015: 5.63 billion pounds
  • 2016: 6.06 billion pounds (October forecast)

Data are reported by NASS, and forecasts are reported in the monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report.

State turkey production, 2015:  

Top eight States:

    • MN- 41 million birds
    • NC- 31 million birds
    • AR- 28 million birds
    • IN- 19 million birds
    • MO- 19 million birds
    • VA- 17 million birds
    • CA- 12 million birds
    • IA- 9 million birds

U.S. total turkey production: 233 million birds

Data are reported in the NASS Poultry-Production and Value report.

U.S. turkey total use (disappearance):

  • 2012: 5.03 billion pounds
  • 2013: 5.07 billion pounds
  • 2014: 5.05 billion pounds
  • 2015: 5.14 billion pounds
  • 2016: 5.50 billion pounds (October projection)

Recent data and projections are reported in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, and historical data are available on the ERS Livestock and Meat Domestic Data web page.

U.S. turkey per capita disappearance:

  • 2012: 16.0 pounds
  • 2013: 16.0 pounds
  • 2014: 15.8 pounds
  • 2015: 16.0 pounds
  • 2016: 17.0 pounds (October projection)

Recent data and projections are reported in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, and historical data are available on the ERS Livestock and Meat Domestic Data web page.

U.S. turkey meat exports:

  • 2012: 797 million pounds
  • 2013: 741 million pounds
  • 2014: 775 million pounds
  • 2015: 529 million pounds
  • 2016: 565 million pounds (October forecast)

Recent data and projections are reported in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, and historical data are available on the ERS Livestock and Meat International Trade Data web page.

 

Market Prices

Retail price for frozen whole turkey:   

  • 2012 average: $1.62 per pound
  • 2013 average: $1.65 per pound
  • 2014 average: $1.60 per pound
  • 2015 average: $1.51 per pound

Data are reported in ERS Meat Price Spreads.

Wholesale price for frozen whole turkey hens:     

  • 2012 average: $1.06 per pound
  • 2013 average: $1.00 per pound
  • 2014 average: $1.08 per pound
  • 2015 average: $1.16 per pound
  • 2016 average: $1.19 per pound (October forecast)

Recent data and projections are reported in the World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report, and historical data are available on the ERS Livestock and Meat Domestic Data web page.