North American Hog Prices Expected to Strengthen Heading Toward Summer

CANADA - Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food predicts stronger pig prices toward the summer of this year, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 4 May 2007
clock icon 3 minute read

North American hog prices have rebounded since the beginning of April.

Yesterday the SPI price for index 100 hogs ranged from about 139 to 149 dollars per 100 kilograms.

Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food Livestock Economist Brad Marceniuk reports, although Canadian prices have lagged behind those of the U.S. due to the strong Canadian dollar, he expects prices to continue to increase heading toward summer.

Brad Marceniuk-Saskatchewan Agriculture and Food

U.S. hog slaughter numbers continue to be a major factor affecting hog prices.

While North American hog prices had declined in March as U.S. hog slaughter numbers averaged over two million head per week, we have seen U.S. hog slaughter numbers decline below two million head per week over the last three weeks and this has helped push up hog prices in the last few weeks.

U.S. cold storage stocks have also been an important factor.

While overall U.S. cold storage stocks of pork beef and poultry at the end March 2007 were up slightly from February, total meat in cold storage was actually down about 14 percent from a year ago and this will be positive for prices of hogs and other meat while we go into the spring and summer and this has already been shown with the large rally in pork cutout values over the last week.

Looking forward, U.S. slaughter numbers and North American slaughter capacity will continue to be key factors affecting prices this summer.

The effect of the redistribution of slaughter hogs from the closure of the Maple leaf plant in Saskatoon is still unclear but it potentially could impact hog prices as we move forward into the summer.

Marceniuk expects index 100 hogs to average between about 145 and 150 dollars per 100 kilograms for the remainder of the second quarter before falling slightly to about 140 to 145 dollars per 100 kilograms for the third quarter.

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