LIVESTOCK HIGHLIGHTS : Top Stories of the Day

06/18/2021 | 05:14pm

TOP STORIES

 
Pork Producers Want Plant Products Off Their Turf -- Market Talk 

16:10 ET - After plant-based meat alternatives found a foothold in the burger world, pork producers are looking to defend their supermarket territory against imitations. The Pork Checkoff, a group funded by hog farmers, says plant-based products should be stocked alongside processed meats -- not fresh, shrink-wrapped chops and ground meat -- and that since plant-based shoppers also tend purchase chicken and turkey, alternatives should be shelved near poultry, and not pork. "Plant-based and pork don't mix," the group says, basing its recommendations on research it commissioned. (jacob.bunge@wsj.com; @jacobbunge)

 
Kerry Sells U.K., Irish Consumer Foods' Meats and Meals Business to Pilgrim's Pride 

Kerry Group PLC said late Thursday that it is selling its consumer foods' meats and meals business in the U.K. and Ireland to Pilgrim's Pride Corp. for 819 million euros ($975.1 million). The Ireland-based food company -- which houses Dairygold butter, Charleville cheese and Richmond sausages among its brands -- said it will use the money raised from the sale for general corporate purposes and the continued strategic development of the taste-and-nutrition business.

 
Red Robin Expands Partnership With Donatos Pizza 

Red Robin Gourmet Burgers Inc. said it is expanding its Donatos Pizza partnership into key territories for the brand. Ohio-based Donatos Pizza partnered with Red Robin in June 2018, offering its pizzas as part of Red Robin's menu. After success in early launch markets, the two chains will be adding more locations this year as part of a market expansion plan, Red Robin said.

STORIES OF INTEREST

 
Commodities Selloff Expected to Linger in 2021 -- Market Talk 

10:28 ET - The big selloff seen in commodities across the board yesterday is "a sign of things to come," Capital Economics says. "The scale of this week's fall in commodity prices is ... consistent with our assessment that much of the rally over the last year or so has been led by investor speculation as opposed to a genuine improvement in the underlying fundamentals," the firm says. Slowdowns in China's economy are expected to further affect metals prices, while in agriculture, favorable weather in the US supports stronger-than-expected crop production. "We think that higher US production and subdued global consumption growth will help to tip the global market into a surplus in 2021/22," the firm says. (kirk.maltais@wsj.com; @kirkmaltais)

 
Danone's Vega Disposal Seen as Positive for Bonds -- Market Talk 

0831 GMT - Danone's announced sale of North American protein and nutrition brand Vega for an undisclosed sum to private equity firm WM Partners is a positive for the French food company's bonds, says ING. "The transaction is in line with Danone's portfolio rationalization," says ING's Alyssa Gammoudy. Vega was founded in 2004 by Charles Chang and Brendan Brazier and sold to Whitewave in 2015 for $550 million. Whitewave was later acquired by Danone, she says. There "are no terms or timeline disclosed" but "we see this transaction as a positive for the company's credit curve," she says. (lorena.ruibal@wsj.com)

FUTURES MARKETS

 
Hog Futures Extend Decline -- Market Talk 

15:43 ET - Lean-hog futures closed lower again, falling 2.1% to $1.08675 a pound. That makes it roughly 15 cents a pound that hog futures have declined in the past 10 days. A large part of the decline seen in hogs is being attributed to selling by managed money funds. "Funds were big-time long," says Craig VanDyke of Top Third Ag Marketing, adding that the 3-cent limit for hogs trading is extending the amount of time it takes fund traders to exit their long positions in hogs. Live-cattle futures finished up 0.4% to $1.2155. (kirk.maltais@wsj.com; @kirkmaltais)

CASH MARKETS

 
Estimated U.S. Pork Packer Margin Index - Jun 18 
 
Source: USDA, based on Wall Street Journal calculations. 
All figures are on a per-head basis. 
 
Date     Standard Margin       Estimated margin 
         Operating Index         at vertically - 
                             integrated operations 
 
Jun 18       -$ 37.39            +$103.16 
Jun 17       -$ 22.25            +$112.53 
Jun 16       -$ 38.16            +$102.96 
 
* Based on Iowa State University's latest estimated cost of production. 
A positive number indicates a processing margin above the cost of 
production of the animals. 
 
Beef-O-Meter 
This report compares the USDA's latest beef carcass composite 
values as a percentage of their respective year-ago prices. 
 
                                  Beef 
          For Today              Choice  148.3 
      (Percent of Year-Ago)      Select  136.3 
 
USDA Boxed Beef, Pork Reports 

Wholesale choice-grade beef prices Friday fell $2.97 per hundred pounds, to $323.28, according to the USDA. Select-grade prices fell $3.63 per hundred pounds, to $283.61. The total load count was 87. Wholesale pork prices fell $4.36, to $119.05 a hundred pounds, based on Omaha, Neb., price quotes.

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

06-18-21 1713ET

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