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Report: Future Patterns of U.S. Feed Grains, Biofuels, and Livestock and Poultry Feeding

What factors are driving the costs of feed production and how are scarce resources for food, feed and fuel going to be allocated in the future as we struggle to feed a growing population? These questions and more are answered in a landmark study reporting on the factors impacting current feed costs.

July 18, 2012

What factors are driving the costs of feed production and how are scarce resources for food, feed and fuel going to be allocated in the future as we struggle to feed a growing population? These questions and more are answered in a landmark study reporting on the factors impacting current feed costs.

The report, Future Patterns of U.S. Feed Grains, Biofuels, and Livestock and Poultry Feeding, was presented by AFIA President and CEO, Joel G. Newman at the Federation of Animal Sciences symposium. The project was financed by the Institute for Feed Education & Research (IFEEDER) on behalf of the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) and The Council on Food, Agricultural and Resource Economics (C-FARE).

The analysis includes an economic outlook of how industry profitability, production efficiency, and demand will be impacted as it pertains to U.S. feed grains and livestock and poultry feeding. Along with the key driving factors of future livestock and poultry industries, this study outlines variables and potential effects, addresses questions not answered, and covers short medium and long term horizons.

According to the report, the three main factors impacting feed availability and cost are biofuels, global demand, specific exports and annual crop yields.

“The U.S. livestock and poultry industries are working under significantly different dynamics than they were just 5 or 10 years ago,” explained AFIA’s president and CEO, Joel G. Newman. “This changing environment will not slow up in the coming years,” he added. 

In the short-term, feed availability should improve, provided weather doesn’t impact grain production significantly. Beyond the short-term, the livestock and poultry industries need to keep an eye on things such as China’s demand for not only corn and soybeans but ultimately, meat, milk and eggs; the development of biobutanol; and potential growth in production of de-oiled distillers grains.

“The U.S. agriculture and food system is the envy of the world,” stated Newman. “We are the technology leaders and need to continue to be – this is the key to success of feeding the growing population by 2050 – the use of and acceptance of technology to feed more people using fewer natural resources.”

Dr. Robert Wisner, retired University Professor Emeritus, Department of Economics, Iowa State University, was the principal investigator for the study.

Click here for a link to the full report and here for a link to the report summary only.

The Council on Food, Agricultural, and Resource Economics (C-FARE) is a non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening the national presence of the agricultural economics profession. C-FARE's governing board includes prominent agricultural economists representing a wide range of public and private sector interests. For more information or to view the press releases on-line please visit www.cfare.org.

Created by the American Feed Industry Association in 2009, the Institute for Feed Education & Research was formed to support the future of the feed industry as it is challenged to sustain the escalating world population. The IFEEDER foundation broadly represents the feed industry, including representation from academia and experts in science and technology. Through education and research, IFEEDER is paving the way for future generations to meet these enormous challenges, ensuring the long-term viability of the global feed industry. IFEEDER is a 501(c)(3) charitable foundation. Visit www.ifeeder.org to learn more.


AFIA, based in Arlington, Va., is the world’s largest organization devoted exclusively to representing the business, legislative and regulatory interests of the U.S. animal feed industry and its suppliers. Founded in 1909, AFIA also is the recognized leader on international industry developments. Members include more than 520 domestic and international companies and state, regional and national associations. Member-companies are livestock feed and pet food manufacturers, integrators, pharmaceutical companies, ingredient suppliers, equipment manufacturers and companies which supply other products, services and supplies to feed manufacturers. 

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