Hogs Will Stay Red

US - Plummeting profits for pork producers are set to continue and more red ink is slated for 2008, reports livestock economist John Lawrence, Iowa State University Extension.
calendar icon 14 January 2008
clock icon 3 minute read

There are more pigs at this time than a year ago and supplies continue to grow. Although pig producers have enjoyed profits for the last 35 months, the market is going to stay tough for sometime ahead.

“We’ve had a long stretch of profitability. For the most part 2007 was a profitable year until October,” said Mr Lawrence.

Those profits have led to gradual, slow expansion. Adding to this expansion, are hogs that are surviving circovirus because of a vaccination programmes.

“That has brought hogs, that a year ago might not have survived, all the way to the market,” he added.

Circo Effects

Circovirus came to the forefront last year with a fairly high death loss in finishing pigs. Hogs that were approaching market weight. Saving the hog industry from this devastating disease saw the development of successful vaccines, which have been very effective and boosted efficiency rates on many units.

“The vaccine appears to be very effective and widely used and as a result we are getting more hogs than were anticipated coming to slaughter,” said Mr Lawrence.

Also, Canadian pig imports added to supplies and weakened the market. Pigs are coming to the United States to be finished and to be processed. And numbers are higher than they were in previuos years

“We’ve had some additional pigs and slaughter pigs that have come in from Canada increase the supply in the fourth quarter,” he explains how numbers grew in unexpectedly in the fourth quarter of 2007. Our supply is larger than what the market is wanting, " he adds.

Further Reading

- Go to our previous report on this story by clicking here.

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