The Dish Market Report, March 18, 2024

Top of Mind News


Bird mortality, hatchability, and weights are limiting product availability and driving up costs. The supply of breasts has decreased. In the market, wings are still tight. There is a limited supply of tenders. The desire for dark meat is still high. The majority of whole birds are balanced.


The majority of the present demand can be met by supply, therefore packers are hopeful. Buyers are still on the cautious side and prioritize their urgent needs. While strips continue to surprise with stronger pricing, middle meats remain stable. End cuts are still popular, particularly within rounds where they are supported by the requirement for lean trim.


The rise in boneless butts was mostly caused by higher exports but B/I butts are flat. Although they are predicted to trade sideways until late March, ribs are also expected to move up next week. With the weather getting warmer, strap on loins are moving down and strap off loins are predicted to move up. The complex as a whole should also start to move higher. Once more, bellies are erratic, and they will drop over the coming week.

The Sea


The season of Lent is now upon us. Due to the difficult season, there is a limited supply of lobster tails. The Dungeness crab season is well underway, as seen by the vendors’ fresh stock. This year, live crawfish costs will be high and supplies will be limited. Please think about switching to frozen crawfish.


Due to challenging weather conditions, various regions like Arizona, California, Florida, Honduras, and Mexico are facing a decline in crop yields, coupled with quality issues and bloom loss. The move from Yuma, AZ, to Salinas Valley, CA, will be completed a few weeks from now. During this time markets are expected to remain higher. The desert growing regions have experienced ongoing market volatility due to recent weather-related challenges, resulting in fluctuating prices for many items. Furthermore, there has been a noticeable decrease in yields and weights.

Kitchen Sink


Except for the medium and California/Northwest regions, all shell egg markets are flat. Block and barrel sales are declining. Butter is growing.


While palm oil saw a significant boost due to strong demand and lower production values, soybean oil went up due to declining crop forecasts in South America. Canola is following soy and palm in popularity.