WASHINGTON — Based on a study conducted by Promar International for the United Soybean Board, livestock and poultry industries are in “a state of flux,” according to the Nov. 18 edition of the National Chicken Council’s Washington Report. Competitive pressures on the farmers and ranchers that supply meat, milk, eggs, and other animal products have been increased by globalization, trade liberalization and environmental regulation.

Animal welfare and food safety issue awareness is growing among consumers, but not necessarily accompanied by knowledge of modern animal agriculture production methods, the report stated.

Animal agriculture including broilers, beef cattle, hogs, turkey, eggs, sheep, dairy, and aquaculture, had the following positive economic impact on the US economy in 2010:

  • $289 billion impact on total output in the economy
  • 1,853,013 job impact throughout the economy
  • $51 billion impact on household incomes
  • $13 billion impact on income taxes paid
  • $6 billion impact on property taxes paid

Between 2000 and 2010, the increased value of animal agriculture production resulted in a boost of more than $22 billion in total national economic output. This growth increased household incomes by approximately $4 billion and created nearly 129,000 jobs, which is particularly important considering that the national economy lost about 1,000,000 jobs over the same period, according to the study.

Domestic animal agriculture is the major source of demand for US soybean meal, and future soybean demand is tightly linked to the health of those industries. In 2010, animals consumed 30 million tons of soybean meal. This usage was the principal driver of soybean processing, which also produces the soybean oil that is essential for the US food industry.

Of critical importance to the soybean sector are actions taken to maintain and expand animal agriculture in the US by supporting its long-term competitiveness, the United Soybean Board report explained.