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WPX 2010: US Pig Producers Back in Profit

11 June 2010, at 6:34pm

US - The US pig meat industry has returned to profit over the last three months, but the situation might not last, writes ThePigSite senior editor Chris Harris.

Economist Steve Meyer, speaking at the World Pork Expo in Des Moines, said that the period that had seen a $6 billion drain on the industry has come to an end with a return to profits in March.

And returns for the pig producers are likely to be helped by low costs for the remainder of the year.

He said that the cost of production is expected to be between $63 and $65 per cwt carcase weight and corn is expected see prices of about $3 with soybean meal at $250-$270 a tonne.

Mr Meyer said the corn prices were still being influenced by the increase in the use of the crop for ethanol.

But there is bullish news for corn because of the potentially bumper crop that is in the field at present.

He said that prices are squeezing the wholesale market and this will have a knock on effect to the retail market.

However, he warned that pig prices might have peaked with only the 4 July holiday in the future holding the hope or another potential spike.

He warned that prices are now likely to fall back from their highs of April and May.

The rise in prices could give the pig producing industry a chance to breathe and offers the potential for expansion, once the industry has built up its cash.