USDA's latest estimates are for total U.S. meat production in 2007 to grow at a "considerably" slower rate than for 2006. Beef, pork, broiler meat and turkey are forecast to increase 2%.

USDA projects pork exports to reach record levels, with beef exports continuing to recover. The pig crop in 2007 will expand slowly, with a continued gradual increase in carcass weights. Meanwhile, cattle producers will expand herds and feedlot supplies and slaughter are expected to slow. -- P. Scott Shearer, Washington, D.C., correspondent