US hog inventory edges lower

by Meat&Poultry Staff
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WASHINGTON – United States inventory of all hogs and pigs on June 1, 2013 was 66.6 million head, a slight decline from a year ago but up 2 percent from March 1, 2013, USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service reported.

Breeding inventory was 5.88 million head, up slightly from 2012 and up 1 percent from the previous quarter. Market hog inventory was down slightly to 60.8 but up 2 percent from last quarter.

The March-May 2013 pig crop slightly increased to 30.1 million head, according to NASS. Sows farrowed during the period declined 2 percent to 2.92 million head. The sows farrowed during the quarter represented 50 percent of the breeding herd. The average pigs saved per litter reached a record high 10.31 for the March-May period, compared to 10.09 a year ago, NASS reported. Pigs saved per litter by size of operation ranged from 7.70 for operations with 1-99 hogs and pigs to 10.40 for operations with more than 5,000 hogs and pigs.

US hog producers intend to have 2.93 million sows farrow during the June-August 2013 quarter, down slightly from the actual farrowings during the same period in 2012, and down slightly from 2011, according to NASS. Intended farrowings for September-November 2013 climbed 1 percent to 2.92 million sows, but were down slightly from 2011.

The total number of hogs under contract owned by operations with more than 5,000 head, but raised by contractors accounted for 46 percent of the total US hog inventory, down from 47 percent in 2012, NASS said.
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