Aid Pleas Begin as US Pork Crisis Bites

US - USDA needs to intervene do something about the increasing cost of pig feed, says the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF). Pork producers are feeling the pinch and crisis looms, writes Peter Shinn.
calendar icon 10 April 2008
clock icon 3 minute read
In an article for agri news service Brownfield, he quotes AFBF President Bob Stallman as saying that US pork producers face uncertainty and a dismal outlook and he's calling for US Ag Secretary Ed Schafer to use Section 32 emergency funds to buy up pork and stabilize the cash hog market.

And the Iowa Pork Producers Association isn’t waiting for USDA to act. IPPA issued a statement earlier this week detailing the many ways its members are trying to boost domestic pork consumption and exports in a bid to cut back supplies

However, there’s a limit to ways IPPA can increase pork disappearance, said IPPA President Dave Moody.

"We can only do so much in trying to promote and get people to consume the product. And if we can't enough of it moved, we've got to get supplies cut back, and we're definitely at some pretty high supply numbers right now," he told Brownfield.

Moody didn't discount AFBF's call for additional Section 32 purchases of pork by USDA. He also emphasized that lower cash hog prices are coming at a time of record-high feed prices, so virtually all pork producers are operating in the red.

"You look at the markets, where they're at right now, and by the time you pay your feed bill and what you get out of you pig, you've got maybe $30 left to have bought that pig and got it to the 50 pound-point, whatever it took," Moody explained. "There's not too many people who are going to find a 50 pound pig for $30 and not have any other costs, so nearly everybody is losing money right now."

View the Brownfield story by clicking here.
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