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Stocks Fluctuate Following Federal Reserve's Latest Rate Hike

In a widely anticipated move, the Federal Reserve unanimously voted to raise interest rates by a quarter percentage point on Wednesday as part of its ongoing effort to tame inflation and slow economic activity. 

This was the ninth consecutive rate hike since last March, which brought the federal funds rate to a range of 4.75% to 5%. The latest decision came amidst the recent unrest in the banking industry and a sharp drop in regional bank stocks last week.

The Federal Reserve has indicated that additional rate hikes may be necessary...


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Mar 23 7:15 AM, UB Newswires

US Foods Debuts Spring 2023 Scoop Menu Solutions to Help Operators 'Stand Out from the Crowd'

Foodservice distribution giant US Foods has unveiled its Spring 2023 Scoop which features 20 products that aim to help operators refresh their menu as the flowers bloom this spring.

“Today, diners are more interested in an intriguing new food experience than spending less while dining out, making it more important than ever that operators differentiate their menu with traffic-driving, on-trend offerings,” said Stacey Kinkaid, vice president of product development and innovation for US Foods. “Seventy-six percent of diners say they are...

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Mar 22 2:55 PM, General News

The Retail Rundown: Seasonal Switch Supports Deli Counter

Spring, which officially began on Monday, was warmly welcomed by retailers across the nation. While winter-like conditions linger for regions of the country this week, grocers are capitalizing on the seasonal shift by showcasing warm-weather favorites including grilling cuts.

In the latest week, IRI data demonstrated that beef maintained its lead on all other proteins in terms of total sales volume. Ground beef, which is widely utilized in various dishes year-round, was the number one seller within the beef complex at $63.9 million in total sales...

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Mar 22 8:00 AM, UB Newswires

Easter Spending Expected to Crush Records

Consumers are expected to spend $24 billion to celebrate Easter this year, up $20.8 billion in 2022 and the previous record high of $21.7 billion in 2020, according to a survey from the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Prosper Insights & Analytics.

According to NRF, 81% of Americans will celebrate the holiday and spend an average of $192.01, the highest figure on record.

“Easter endures as an important holiday for many Americans, signifying new beginnings and a time of celebration with friends and family,” NRF President and CEO Matthew...

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Mar 22 7:19 AM, General News

Stocks Futures Add to Gains Ahead of Federal Reserve's Policy Meeting

U.S. stocks added to Monday’s gains in early action Tuesday on optimism that the global banking system is stabilizing after UBS acquired Credit Suisse for $3.2 billion. 

After negotiations that took place during the weekend leading up to the signing of the merger agreement, UBS and Credit Suisse concluded that it would be in the best interest of their shareholders and their stakeholders to enter into the merger,” according to a press release from Credit Suisse..

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Mar 21 8:17 AM, UB Newswires

Sales of Plant-Based Meat Alternatives Increasingly Fizzling Out at Retail

The retail craze for plant-based meat alternatives appears to be behind us.

Data from COMTELL along with Information Resources, Inc. (IRI), which together with The NPD Group (NPD) have formed Circana, demonstrates a consistent decline in retail sales volume of plant-based alternatives within the latest two years and counting.

Through the information from IRI, COMTELL now features a vastly larger database of retail items and related statistics on its overhauled retail dashboard

In the latest week, sales of meat alternatives ranked tenth...


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Mar 21 7:55 AM, UB Newswires

CME Grain Futures Under Pressure After Renewal of Black Sea Grain Initiative

The Black Sea Grain Initiative, a deal brokered by the UN and Turkey last summer, was extended for at least 60 days on Saturday, the day it was due to expire.

Following Russia's attack on Ukraine over one year ago, the agreement was first set into motion in July 2022 in order to supply the global marketplace with food and fertilizer.

Both Russia and Ukraine are among the world's top suppliers of arable crops including wheat, corn, and oilseeds. Moreover, Russia is a major supplier of energy and fertilizer to the world markets. The war in Ukraine has limited...

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Mar 20 9:15 AM, UB Newswires

U.S. Stocks Add to Volatility as Traders Weigh First Republic Lifeline

Adding to this week’s volatility, the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined by 0.4% Friday as traders assess the situation surrounding First Republic Bank.

The nation’s largest banks, including Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase, have granted a $30 billion deposit in First Republic to strengthen confidence in the banking sector. 

The S&P 500 was last 0.3% lower. The tech-heavy Nasdaq-100 was flat to slightly firmer and has advanced by over 5% so far on the week, its best performance in several months. 

U.S. stock finished...

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Mar 17 8:13 AM, UB Newswires

Oil Futures Rise After Swiss National Bank Provides Aid to Credit Suisse

After falling by over 3% yesterday, Brent crude oil prices advanced by 1% Thursday, lifting the nearby contract to $74 a barrel.

West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude, the main benchmark for North American oil prices, climbed by 0.8% during pre-market trade. At present, the April contract is trading at $68 a barrel after tumbling to the lowest level since late December 2021 on Wednesday. 

Despite the rebound so far Thursday, both Both Brent crude and WTI crude remain oversold. 

Trader sentiment was bolstered by an announcement from Credit Suisse that it “is taking decisive action to pre-emptively strengthen its liquidity by intending to exercise its option to borrow from the Swiss National Bank (SNB) up to CHF 50 billion under a Covered Loan Facility as well as a short-term liquidity facility." 

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Mar 16 8:20 AM, UB Newswires

Concerns Over Banking Sector Fueled Sell-Off in Livestock Futures

All eyes have been on the financial sector in recent days following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank over the weekend. On Wednesday, U.S. stocks tumbled as growing concerns over the financial system mounted. Shares of Credit Suisse, a global investment bank and financial services firm based in Switzerland, declined by as much as 30% and hit an all-time low. 

The downturn in stocks likely spilled over into livestock futures Wednesday. Live cattle and feeder futures closed lower for a fifth consecutive session yesterday, sending the April contract to a multi-week floor. Further declines in futures prices yesterday triggered cash cattle sales by hedged feeders, who captured the positive basis of cash over futures...

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Mar 16 7:05 AM, UB Newswires

U.S. Stocks Under Pressure Following Latest PPI, Retail Sales Reports

U.S. stocks closed higher Tuesday, boosted in part by a rebound in bank shares following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank. Traders were also assessing yesterday's friendly inflation data, which was on target with pre-report expectations.

Tuesday's CPI report for February showed a 0.4% month-over-month rise, down slightly from January’s 0.5% month-over-month gain. On an annual basis, inflation slowed to 6.0% in February, down from 6.4% in January. 

Traders are anxiously awaiting the Federal Reserve's decision on interest rates during next week’s monetary policy...

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Mar 15 9:05 AM, UB Newswires

The Retail Rundown: Is Chicken Wing Demand a Slam Dunk this March Madness?

Yesterday tipped off March Madness, the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament that runs through April 3. This tournament typically increases the consumption of game-day foods like chicken wings, particularly at foodservice outlets.

This year, however, wing demand leading up to this year's 84th annual edition of the tournament appears to be lackluster, according to Urner Barry market reporter Matt Busardo.

“It’s important to note that with wings moving into March Madness, it’s not like the Super Bowl where...


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Mar 15 8:28 AM, UB Newswires

February CPI Reported 6% Higher on Year, in Line with Expectations

U.S. stocks were volatile Monday as traders assessed the fallout from the collapse of two banks in recent days. On Sunday, President Biden addressed the banking system in a press release by the White House. 

Over the weekend, and at my direction, the Treasury Secretary and my National Economic Council Director worked diligently with the banking regulators to address problems at Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank," said the President. 

"The American people and American businesses can have confidence that their bank deposits will be there when they need...

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Mar 14 8:05 AM, UB Newswires

ANALYSIS: Cattle Weights Buck Seasonal Norms Due to Weather, Feed Costs

Cattle weights have been one of the many pieces to this ever-changing puzzle within the beef complex. While weights typically appreciate throughout the fourth quarter and peak in January, the industry bucked that trend this year.

There are a couple of factors that have led to this trend breaking its streak, one being pasture. Available pasture over the past two years has shrunk and was exacerbated by the drought experienced in the majority of the nation's cattle-raising regions.

Secondly, feed costs have impacted the weight situation...


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Mar 14 7:01 AM, Urner Barry

Grain Deal Negotiations Underway Between U.N. Officials and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister 

On Monday, U.N. officials and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergi Vershinin started negotiations on a possible extension of the Black Sea Grain Initiative. 

The Initiative, brokered by the United Nations and Turkey in July 2022, allows for the exports of Ukrainian grain and fertilizer from three of Ukraine's Black Sea ports. Moreover, the deal also ensures that Russian food and fertilizer reach the global marketplace. 

The deal's renewal deadline is rapidly approaching on March 18. 

Ukraine's corn and wheat exports have returned to nearly seasonal-average levels since last summer...


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Mar 13 8:29 AM, UB Newswires

Latest Jobs Report Outpaces Expectations with 311,000 Jobs Added in February 

Traders were on edge ahead of the latest jobs report for February, released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Friday morning. The Federal Reserve has been closely monitoring the labor market for any signals of easing inflation. 

Last month, the government reported that total nonfarm payroll employment swelled by 517,000 in January, far outpacing expectations. The unemployment rate was little changed at 3.4%, which was the lowest level since 1969. 

In the latest report, the labor department said that U.S. employers added 311,000 jobs in February. While this was below last month's stout advance, it was above what economists were anticipating and signals solid U.S. job growth. The unemployment rate moved up to 3.6%.

U.S. stock futures were mostly lower Friday morning ahead of the jobs data but all three major indices have since turned higher as traders digest the latest numbers. 

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Mar 10 9:10 AM, UB Newswires

Russian Shelling Forces Blackout at Europe's Largest Nuclear Power Plant

Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant has again been targeted by Russian shelling overnight, forcing a blackout mode and cutting out electricity for a portion of Kyiv's civilians. This is the first time the site has lost all power since November 2022.

The Zaporizhzhia plant is Europe’s largest and is under Russian control since 2022. Media outlets report that several civilians have been killed by the overnight missile attacks.

“Currently, the power plant is de-energizised and stays in blackout mode for the sixth time during the occupation," according to a post by state energy company Energoatom...

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Mar 9 8:00 AM, UB Newswires

Corn Stocks Raised in Latest WASDE, While Soybean Stocks Projected Lower

The USDA released its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report on Wednesday, showing increased ending stocks for corn and lower stocks for soybeans.

The 2022/23 U.S. corn outlook showed reduced exports, down 75 million bushels. This was lowered based on sluggish sales and shipments to date, despite relatively competitive U.S. prices.

Other uses were unchanged, resulting in corn ending stocks being raised by 75 million bushels compared to the month prior.

The season-average corn price was lowered by 10 cents to $6.60 per bushel.

Global corn production was projected 3.2 million tons lower for reductions in Argentina due to heat and dryness last month and into early March. Global ending stocks were up 1.2 million from last month to 296.5 million tons...

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Mar 9 7:42 AM, UB Newswires

UN Secretary-General Meets with Zelenskyy in Kyiv to Discuss Grain Deal

UN Secretary-General António Guterres has arrived in Kyiv to discuss the future of the Black Sea Grain Initiative with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. This is the Secretary-General’s third visit to Ukraine in less than a year. 

The grain deal was launched in Istanbul by the Russian Federation, Turkey, Ukraine, and United Nations in July 2022. The agreement allows for the exports of grain and fertilizer from designated Ukrainian ports to the global marketplace.  

The Black Sea Grain Initiative will expire on March 18 unless all parties involved agree on an extension...


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Mar 9 7:13 AM, UB Newswires

Industry Reacts to USDA’s Proposed "Product of USA" Requirements

The U.S. Department of Agriculture released a proposed rule featuring new regulatory requirements for the “Product of USA” label claim.

The rule would allow for the “Product of USA” or “Made in the USA” label to be used on meat, poultry and egg products only when they are derived from animals born, raised, slaughtered and processed in the United States.

The North American Meat Institute (NAMI) said the USDA’s latest proposal would “result in trade retaliation from Canada and Mexico costing American consumers and businesses billions of dollars...


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Mar 8 7:49 AM, General News

The Retail Rundown: Key Findings From the 18th Annual Power of Meat Study

The 2023 Power of Meat Study was presented this week at the Annual Meat Conference in Dallas, Texas by 210 Analytics’ Anne-Marie Roerink. 

For this week’s retail rundown, we highlight the compelling findings from this annual report, which identified key trends from a retail meat perspective. 

Despite upward pricing pressure due to inflation, the study found that meat purchases are surpassing pre-pandemic levels. Meat had a 98% household penetration last year, making it the largest player within the fresh departments. Overall meat sales in 2022...

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Mar 8 7:46 AM, UB Newswires

Small Fire Contained at Emery Oleochemicals Following Explosion Monday Night 

An explosion occurred at Emery Oleochemicals’ chemical plant located on Este Avenue in Winton Hills, Ohio Monday night. 

Emery Oleochemicals produces chemicals commonly made from natural oils and fats and started out as a tallow and candle business in 1840. 

The Cincinnati Fire Department responded to the explosion, which resulted in a small fire. There was also a nitrogen leak, according to WLWT reporter Jatara McGee. The explosion and fire have since been contained. 

The police stressed that there is no hazard outside the facility, according to a tweet that was posted Monday evening...

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Mar 8 7:29 AM, UB Newswires

Grain Futures Fall as Traders Eye Black Sea Grain Deal, Growing Conditions

A confluence of market-moving factors, both manmade and natural, continue to influence grain futures on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.

Wheat and corn futures saw significant downward pressure in overnight trading. May wheat futures declined by 9 ¾ cents to $6.99 a bushel. May corn futures shaved off 3 ¼ cents to $6.36 ½ a bushel and are down by nearly 7% on the year so far. Meanwhile, May soybeans lost 6 ½ cents to $15.12 ¼ a bushel...

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Mar 6 9:01 AM, UB Newswires

Future of Black Sea Grain Initiative Remains Unclear as Deal Approaches Expiration

The future of the Black Sea Grain Initiative, brokered by the United Nations and Turkey in July 2022, remains unclear as the deal approaches its expiration date. 

The initiative allows for Ukrainian grain shipments and Russian exports of key agricultural commodities amid the ongoing war, which hit its one-year mark one week ago.

Specifically, the Initiative allows for commercial food and fertilizer exports from three Ukrainian ports in the Black Sea—Odesa, Chornomorsk, and Yuzhny/Pivdennyi, according to the United Nations. 

The deal is set to expire...

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Mar 3 8:02 AM, UB Newswires

State of the Restaurant Industry Report Points to Continued Growth in a New Normal

“A new normal.”

That term has become a staple in the American vernacular and according to the National Restaurant Association’s 2023 State of the Restaurant Industry report, it is also expected to define the restaurant industry.

Findings indicate that 70% of operators have begun to settle or are on a path to the new normal.

The report was described as an “authoritative look” at the restaurant industry and the opportunities before it based on nationwide surveys of restaurant owners, operators, chefs and consumers...

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Mar 2 8:31 AM, General News

Pandemic-Era SNAP Benefits End for Remaining 32 States Today

For almost three years, over 41 million Americans relied on the pandemic-era enhancements to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to provide enough food for their families.

The program was part of an emergency legislation enacted by Congress during the early stages of the pandemic in an effort to help low-income families secure enough food. 

Under the policy, each recipient received a monthly average of $251, according to the USDA. The monthly average is expected to drop to $82 this month...

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Mar 2 7:01 AM, UB Newswires

Urner Barry's Spring 2023 Reporter Issue Released; Read It Online For Free Now

Check out a brand new issue of Urner Barry's Reporter!

The spring 2023 edition of Urner Barry's Reporter magazine features our special State of the Seafood Industry: An Annual Review, an in-depth look at what's going on with some of the markets within the seafood industry. Plus, learn more about cell-cultivated meat; how supply chain disruptions are easing but has shifted port demand; and if genetically modified chicken is the answer to HPAI. 

Read Volume 18, Number 2 of Urner Barry's Reporter for free here.

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Mar 1 7:38 AM, Urner Barry

The Retail Rundown: Marching Towards Spring Demand

March is here and the countdown to spring is rapidly winding down. The transition to warmer weather coincides with increased retail buying occasions as consumers and grocers alike prepare for celebrations including March Madness, St. Patrick’s Day, and Easter.

One week into lent, seafood feature volume has advanced to 40.5% this week, up from 33% the week prior. Currently, the fresh/frozen fillet category accounts for nearly 31% of seafood features. 

According to its annual survey, the National Retail Federation (NRF) found that a record 61% of consumers plan to celebrate St. Patrick's...

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Mar 1 7:05 AM, UB Newswires

Los Angeles State of Restaurant Report Shows Operators Dealing with Increased Costs, Lower Profits

TouchBistro’s 2023 “Los Angeles State of Restaurants” report shows that restaurants in the city have recovered to 77.4% of pre-pandemic levels, roughly 3% higher than the national average. While the hope was that restaurants would steadily recover from the pandemic, other factors have impacted the process.

Thanks to rising food costs and other expenses that go alongside with running a restaurant, the report found that the profit margins for full-service eateries in LA have dropped to 9.4%...

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Feb 24 9:08 AM, General News

U.S. Issues Additional Russian Sanctions One Year into Russia-Ukraine War

In the early hours of February 24, 2022, explosions were reported in the Ukrainian cities of Kyiv, Kharkiv, and Odesa, sending shockwaves throughout the global marketplace.

One year into Russia's war on Ukraine has left nearly 18 million people in need of humanitarian assistance as civilians grapple with water and electricity shortages and widespread property damage. 

According to the latest United Nations Human Rights Office (OHCHR) data, at least 8,000 non-combatants have been killed along with nearly 13,300 injured since the start of the war. The actual number...

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Feb 24 8:17 AM, UB Newswires

The Retail Rundown: Rounding Out February

With February nearly behind us, grocers are enthusiastically looking toward spring and warmer weather, which typically improves retail demand following a sluggish start to the year.

For now, winter remains in full force as millions of people face a massive coast-to-coast storm this week. Record-shattering warmth in the East will contrast with below-average temperatures in the West and could contribute to varying retail demand throughout the country this week. 

Along with the weather, Lent—which begins today—is currently influencing consumers' purchasing behaviors. The world’s Catholic population will reduce their red meat consumption over the next several weeks, providing a boost for the seafood counter...

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Feb 22 7:25 AM, UB Newswires

Price Spread Between Conventional and NAE Chicken on the Rise

Urner Barry initiates new market coverage of No Antibiotics Ever (NAE) chicken as category grows.

February 21, 2023, Toms River, NJ – Urner Barry, the leading provider of protein market news and information in the food industry, is pleased to announce a new wholesale market quotation series for No Antibiotics Ever (NAE) chicken.

As consumer trends shift and demand for sustainable and antibiotic-free protein grew, the chicken industry began to offer more options for buyers in that arena. Both large and small companies operating in the retail and foodservice sectors have made public statements with regard to exclusively sourcing NAE chicken. A growing segment of the market, NAE chicken is now traded in notable volume across the U.S...

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Feb 21 9:06 AM, Urner Barry

U.S. Stocks Under Pressure Following Latest PPI Report

Recently released data by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that the Producer Price Index (PPI) in January rose by 6.0% on a yearly basis. On a month-over-month basis, the PPI gained 0.7%. The BLS reported that prices for final demand goods gained 1.2%, while final demand services increased by 0.4%. 

The index for final demand minus foods, energy, and trade services advanced by 0.6% last month. This was the largest gain since moving up 0.9% in March 2022, according to the BLS. On an annual basis, prices for final demand (stripping away food, energy, and trade services), moved up by 4.5%...

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Feb 16 8:55 AM, UB Newswires

Subway to Officially Explore Sale of Operations

Fast food sandwich chain Subway announced that it would explore a possible sale of the company on February 14, roughly a month after the Wall Street Journal reported that the company was in the early stages of the process.

The company stated that there is no timetable or assurance that a sale will occur at all. Subway also announced that J.P. Morgan will advise the company and lead the sale exploration process.

“The management team remains committed to the future and will continue to execute against its multi-year transformation journey, which includes...

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Feb 15 8:14 AM, Urner Barry

The Retail Rundown: Upcoming Lenten Season Lifts Seafood Sales

Trending topics this week include the upcoming Lenten season and inflation as traders assess the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) report released yesterday.

The Christian Lenten season begins next week on February 22 and will last through April 6. During this 40-day stretch, observers will reduce their red meat consumption. The seafood counter typically stands to benefit from this temporary shift away from meat on Fridays. 

Although Lent is rapidly approaching, retailers have actually reduced their number of seafood feature activities. For the week of February 20, seafood buying opportunities clock in at 23%, down from 31.4% the week prior. Beef narrowly holds the top spot with 29.2%, closely followed by pork with 28.5%. Chicken makes up around 15% of circular ad space...

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Feb 15 7:10 AM, UB Newswires

January CPI 6.4% Higher on Year, Slightly Above Expectations

On Monday, all three major U.S. indexes gained over 1% ahead of the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) report. Prior to a revision, the CPI declined 0.1% in December compared to the month prior, the largest decline in two years.

Signals of cooling inflation in last month's report raised optimism among traders that the Federal Reserve would halt its interest rate hikes.

According to revisions released on Friday, December's data was revised to show a 0.1% increase in December. 

The recently released data by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) showed the index in January up 6.4% on the year, the smallest annual increase since October 2021. This marked the seventh consecutive month of year-over-year declines...


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Feb 14 8:36 AM, UB Newswires

Smithfield Foods To Cease Operations at Farmer John Plant This Month

Smithfield Foods, Inc. is ceasing all harvest and processing operations at its Farmer John processing plant in Vernon, California this month.

According to a statement issued by the company during the summer of 2022, the decision was made due to “the escalating cost of doing business in California”. As a result of the closure, the company will reduce its sow herd located in Utah and is “exploring strategic options to exit its farms in Arizona and California”. 

The Vernon plant processed only company-owned hogs. Industry sources estimated the facility's daily processing capacity at roughly 8,000 to 10,000 head...

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Feb 13 10:15 AM, UB Newswires

Oil Futures Gain Following Russia's Voluntary Reduction in Oil Production Next Month 

In early action Friday, the April Brent crude oil futures contract is up by nearly 3% from Thursday’s close at $85.74 per barrel. The March West Texas Intermediate (WTI) futures contract was last trading at $79.11 per barrel, up 1.2% from yesterday's settlement price. 

Traders are digesting Russia’s recent announcement that it will voluntarily reduce its oil production by 500,000 barrels per day starting next month. The move comes in response to the recent Western price limits and bans on Moscow’s gasoline and oil products due to the war in Ukraine. 

Russia believes that the price ceiling mechanism for the sale of Russian oil and oil products is an interference in market relations and a continuation of the destructive energy policy of the countries of the collective West,” according to a statement published on the government website. 

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Feb 10 9:31 AM, UB Newswires

Corn and Soybean Stocks Raised in Latest WASDE Report

The USDA released its monthly World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report on Wednesday, showing higher stocks for both corn and for soybeans.

The 2022/23 U.S. corn outlook showed that corn used for ethanol was reduced by 25 million bushels. Other uses were unchanged, resulting in corn ending stocks up 25 million bushels compared to the month prior.

The season-average corn price was unchanged at $6.70 per bushel.

Global coarse grain production was lowered by 3.6 million tons. Corn production for Argentina was cut based on reductions to both area and yield, according to USDA. Global ending stocks were down 1.1 million from last month, to 295.3 million tons.

For soybeans, the U.S. outlook for 2022/23 called for lower soybean crush and increased ending stocks. Soybean exports were unchanged. This resulted in ending stocks increasing by 15 million bushels to 225 million...

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Feb 8 1:35 PM, UB Newswires

NRF: February Imports to Hit Lowest Point in 3 Years

Import cargo volume is expected to drop to its lowest level since the pandemic began according to the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Hackett Associates’ Global Port Tracker report.

“With the U.S. economy slowing and consumers worried by rising interest rates and still-high inflation, retailers are importing less merchandise,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “February is traditionally a slow month, but these are the lowest numbers we’ve seen in almost three years. Retailers are being cautious as they wait...

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Feb 8 7:29 AM, General News

The Retail Rundown: Super Bowl Shines Bright in Otherwise Dull Demand Period

Eager fans are gearing up for Super Bowl weekend as the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles prepare to face off in Arizona. Grocers are equally enthusiastic to capture additional sales during what is an otherwise dull demand period for retail and red meat sales in general.  

The National Chicken Council (NCC) estimates Americans will eat a record-shattering 1.45 billion chicken wings during this year's Super Bowl LVII festivities. This is up 2% from last year and equates to about 84 million wings, said the NCC. Urner Barry's Ryan Doyle took a closer look at NCC's latest annual Chicken Wing Report.  

A decline in wing prices along with the return to in-person celebrations, whether it be at home or at a restaurant, is expected to drive the uptick in wing consumption...

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Feb 8 7:20 AM, UB Newswires

Fresh Ideation Food Group Recalls Hundreds of Sandwiches, Snacks Due to Listeria Contamination

Baltimore, Maryland-based Fresh Ideation Food Group has recalled over 400 sandwiches, snacks and other food products because they may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes, per a February 3 notice from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The impacted products were distributed in Connecticut, District of Columbia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Virginia.

The sandwiches and other products were sold in retail locations, vending machines, and during travel with transportation providers, per the FDA...

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Feb 7 7:33 AM, General News

Urner Barry Achieves Heightened Level of IOSCO Compliance

Urner Barry, newly combined with Mintec to form the largest agri-food PRA, is proud to achieve third-party assurance of IOSCO Type 2 compliance for key benchmark protein price assessments. Additionally, Urner Barry announced Type 1 assurance on an expanded list of benchmark items within their market coverage.

For over 160 years, Urner Barry has been the trusted source for benchmark pricing in the food and agriculture industry—a pledge reflected by the successful completion of yet another independent review of its price reporting methodology and control procedures undertaken by...

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Feb 6 9:29 AM, Urner Barry

Chicken Wing Consumption to Break Records on Super Bowl Sunday Thanks to Favorable Prices

Americans are expected to eat a record-smashing 1.45 billion chicken wings during Super Bowl LVII weekend, according to the National Chicken Council (NCC)’s annual Chicken Wing Report.

The 1.45 billion mark represents a two percent jump from last year or 84 million additional wings.

NCC spokesperson Tom Super cited more favorable wing prices when compared to last year and people getting back to normal routines and heading to parties or restaurants and bars for the jump in wing consumption...

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Feb 2 8:09 AM, General News

Online Grocery Sales Forecast for Further Growth Following Pandemic Boom

A forecast expects more consumers to shop for groceries online over the next five years, with the segment keeping momentum after it witnessed a boom during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Online grocery sales are forecast to grow at compound average growth rate (CAGR) of 11.7% over the next five years, per the 2023 Brick Meets Click/Mercatus 5-Year Grocery Sales Forecast.

Inflation, illness concerns including COVID, RSV and the flu along with a “maturing online segment” were noted as factors behind the growing popularity of online grocery shopping...

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Feb 2 8:04 AM, General News

The NPD Group: Restaurant Industry Witnesses Stability Following Myriad of Headwinds

A pandemic, labor shortages and record inflation are just a few of the challenges that the foodservice industry has faced since early 2020.

The industry persevered and The NPD Group believes calmer seas may be ahead. Findings from The NPD Group show that U.S. commercial foodservice customer traffic to restaurants and other foodservice outlets ended 2022 flat compared to a year ago. Consumer spending at foodservice outlets was up 4%, thanks to higher prices.

“Looking forward to 2023, we anticipate improvements in supply chain disruptions, inflation deceleration...

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Feb 1 9:25 AM, SeafoodNews

Conagra Brands Recalls 2.5 Million Pounds of Canned Meat, Poultry Products Due to Packaging Defect

Conagra Brands has recalled over 2.5 million pounds of canned meat and poultry products due to a packaging defect that may cause products to become contaminated without showing any signs, per a January 31 announcement from the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

The impacted products were produced between December 12, 2022 and January 13, 2023. The products subject to recall bear establishment number “P4247” on the product cans. These items were shipped to retail locations nationwide...

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Feb 1 8:30 AM, General News

The Retail Rundown: Comparing Urner Barry's Protein Indices

Seafood features climbed to the top spot across proteins this week with 30% of feature volume. Pork follows with 24%, while beef chimes in with 22%—down from 27% the week prior. Chicken accounts for 19.5% of ad space, while turkey holds onto just over 2%. Buying opportunities for eggs have dwindled in recent weeks and are currently registering zero. 

A look at Urner Barry's Weekly Retail Feature Indices so far this year shows that seafood features are priced the highest overall, while chicken features as a whole are the lowest. Seafood and chicken are above their respective year-ago levels, while pork and beef are showing a discount to 2022 levels...


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Feb 1 8:00 AM, UB Newswires

Super Bowl Sneak Peak: What Are Protein Wholesale Markets Doing?

With less than two weeks to go, fans across the country are gearing up for Super Bowl LVII: Chiefs vs Eagles. Philly center Jason Kelce and Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce will be the first brothers to play each other in the Super Bowl, adding to the palpable excitement ahead of the big game. 

From friendly sibling rivalry to maybe not-so-friendly opposition between the two fanbases, contrasts can be drawn between the teams and their hometowns. Which city has the best specialties when it comes to food? Do cheesesteaks, a quintessential Philly staple, overtake Kansas City’s delectable slowly smoked barbeque, or is it the other way around? 

While there is no clear answer, wholesalers and retailers alike are cheering for protein lovers from all persuasions. The Super Bowl... 

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Feb 1 6:45 AM, UB Newswires

Cattle Inventory Near Expectations; US Herd Down 3% from Yr-Ago

The USDA's cattle inventory report released Tuesday afternoon showed the number of cattle and calves in the U.S. as of Jan. 1 at 97.0% of a year ago, nearly on par with the average of analysts' estimates.

The herd was reported at nearly 89.274 million head, down from 92.077 million a year ago, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported. Analysts participating in the Urner Barry survey estimated on average a 2.9% decrease in the total herd from the previous year, or about 89.236 million head. The range was 96.7% to 97.5%.   

The nation's calf crop in 2022 was reported at 34.465 million head, down 2.0% from 2021. The average of analysts' estimates was 2.6% below a year ago.

The number of beef cows that gave birth in 2022 was reported at 28.918 million, down almost 3.6% from a year earlier. Analysts had pegged the figure at 4.2% smaller...

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Jan 31 3:31 PM, UB Newswires

Steve Tippmann Retires After 36 Years with Tippmann Group; John Tippmann III to Fill Role

Steve Tippmann, Executive Vice President at Tippmann Group / Interstate Warehousing has retired after nearly 36 years in the refrigerated warehousing and construction industries.

Tippmann’s career started in refrigeration engineering, but his more recent role had him focused on customer relationships and overseeing the sales and marketing goals of Tippmann Construction and Interstate Warehousing.

Throughout his career, Tippmann has also spent time as a leader on multiple boards for industry associations including the Global Cold Chain Alliance, American Meat Institute, and Refrigerating Engineers & Technicians Association...

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Jan 31 9:40 AM, General News

U.S. Futures Edge Lower Ahead of Earnings, Fed Meeting

U.S. futures edged lower early Monday as traders brace for a potential interest rate hike from the Federal Reserve. 

The Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) is convening on Tuesday and Wednesday. Economists expect the central bank to raise rates by one-quarter of a percentage point as part of its ongoing effort to tame inflation.

The January 2023 CPI data is scheduled for release on February 14 at 8:30 A.M. Eastern Time. The most recent CPI data reported inflation at 6.5% in December, the smallest annual increase since October 2021. The core CPI rose 0.3% last month following a 0.2% gain in November...

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Jan 30 9:05 AM, UB Newswires

NRF: Valentine’s Day Spending to Soar Past 2022 to $26 Billion

The National Retail Federation (NRF) expects consumers to shell out $25.9 billion for Valentine’s Day in 2023, up from 2022’s $23.9 billion, per an annual survey released by the group and Prosper Insights & Analytics.

If the survey results hold true, 2023 would be one of the highest spending years on record, the NRF noted.

“Valentine’s Day is a special occasion to shop for the people we care most about,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “This year, as consumers embrace spending on friends and...

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Jan 27 8:17 AM, SeafoodNews

Ukraine's Coal and Gas Reserves Enough to Last Through Winter, Says Prime Minister

As Russia’s war on Ukraine approaches its one-year mark, the estimated fallout to human life and property continues its devastating rise.

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the number of refugees from Ukraine recorded across Europe has swelled to nearly eight million individuals as of January 24, 2023. Reuters estimates the number of deaths at 42,295 people, as of the latest update, with 15,000 people or more thought to be missing. 

Along with mass casualties and the displacement of millions, the war has resulted in the massive destruction of buildings and property, including Ukraine's energy infrastructure...

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Jan 26 7:50 AM, UB Newswires

The Retail Rundown: How Do Plant-Based Meat Sales Fare at Retail?

Plant protein has piqued increased interest among consumers in recent years. Within the plant protein arena, plant-based meat ranks second in terms of sales dollars, behind plant-based milk.

Boosted by growing demand among consumers, whether vegan, vegetarian, or flexitarian, plant-based meat sales climbed to $1.4 billion in 2020, according to the Good Food Institute. That was up 45% from 2019 and a record year of growth.  However, dollar sales of plant-based meat in 2021 were flat with the year prior at $1.4 billion.

Like conventional meat, the plant-based industry has weathered recent years of pandemic-related challenges including supply chain issues and inflation. A deeper dive into Information Resources, Inc. (IRI) data suggests that plant-based sales at retail could continue to stall following its sharp upward trajectory three years prior...

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Jan 25 11:38 AM, UB Newswires

U.S. Natural Gas Wholesale Prices Expected to Decline This Year

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is forecasting lower wholesale U.S. natural prices this year and into 2024, according to its January Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO) released Wednesday. 

The EIA is anticipating natural gas production in the United States to increase by 2% this year and expects the Henry Hub price, which is the U.S. benchmark, to average $4.90 per mission British thermal units (MMBtu) in 2023. If accurate, this would be more than $1.50/MMBtu lower than the 2022 average. 

In the first quarter of 2023, the Henry Hub price could average close to $5.00/MMBtu. This is due to increased demand during the winter along with liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports at near-capacity volumes, explained the EIA...

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Jan 19 8:00 AM, UB Newswires

Ag Exports in Focus Following Tariff Rate Quote Agreement Between U.S. and EU

Earlier this week, United States Trade Representative Katherine Tai along with EU representatives signed the U.S.-EU Tariff Rate Quota (TRQ) Agreement.

This enabled the U.S. to preserve its existing access to the EU market for various agricultural goods following the United Kingdom’s exit from the EU on January 1, 2021.

Through the first 11 months of 2022, the U.S. exported $11.1 billion worth of goods to the EU, according to the office of the U.S. trade representative. 

Under tariff-rate quota 005 (Meat of bovine animals/Edible offal of bovine animals), the Union volume of the United States/Canada country specific part was adjusted to 10,500 tonnes...

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Jan 19 7:45 AM, UB Newswires

The Retail Rundown: Seafood Feature Volume Increases

Seafood feature volume increased to the top spot across the protein complex this week. Seafood ads account for nearly 30% of total protein ads, while beef is a close second with 29%. Pork features claim about 23%, while chicken makes up 17%. With the holiday baking season behind us, egg features accounted for less than one percent of total retail buying opportunities.   

In the seafood complex, fresh finfish was the top seller last week with $28.3 million in total sales, or about 32% of the total seafood sales value. A deeper dive into the finfish category shows fresh salmon as the leading species among shoppers. Salmon retailed at an average of $11.24 non-discounted, versus $10.37 discounted.

Fresh cod purchases ranked second with about $19.2 million in sales for the week ended January 8. In the frozen aisle, shrimp retailed at $9.23 non-discounted, 14.5% higher than its discounted average price. Convenient prepared options including frozen seafood cakes made a splash with $560,320 in total sales, according to Information Resources, Inc (IRI) data...

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Jan 19 7:30 AM, UB Newswires

The Retail Rundown: Beef Dominates Total Sales; CPI Data Released

In this week’s retail rundown, we explore the economy and inflation with the latest CPI data signaling slowing inflation. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the Consumer Price Index (CPI) data this morning, showing the index up 6.5% overall in December, in line with what analysts were anticipating. The food index rose 0.3% last month, following a 0.5% increase in November.

The food away from home index was up 0.4% last month. Food at home rose by 0.2%. The index for meats, poultry, fish, and...

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Jan 13 7:30 AM, UB Newswires

The Retail Rundown: Exploring COMTELL’s Revamped Retail Section

Urner Barry, the leading provider of protein news and information in the food industry, has overhauled the retail section on COMTELL by utilizing scanner data from Information Resources, Incorporated (IRI), a leading global analytics and data provider from the retail space.  

Through the data from IRI, COMTELL now features a vastly larger database of retail items and related statistics, including hundreds more seafood items and 3 to 5 times as many meat and poultry items. Lamb, veal, and sausage items are also now represented.  

Each new item contains...

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Jan 5 8:15 AM, UB Newswires

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