WASHINGTON – During the week ending Dec. 24, commercial hatcheries in the 19-state weekly program set 194 million eggs in incubators, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service, Agricultural Statistics Board, US Department of Agriculture. This total was down 5 percent from the eggs set during the corresponding week one year earlier.

Average hatchability for chicks hatched during the week was 85 percent.

Broiler growers in the 19-state weekly program placed 163 million chicks for meat production during the week ending Dec. 24. Placements were down 3 percent from the comparable week one year earlier. From Jan. 2 through Dec. 24, cumulative placements were 8.42 billion, down 3 percent from the same period one year earlier.