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December 28, 2005

Missouri Hog and Pig Inventory Below Last Year

COLUMBIA, MO - The December 1, 2005 inventory of Missouri hogs and pigs is estimated at 2.75 million head, down 150,000 head from a year ago and 100,000 head below the September 1, 2005 inventory. "Hog inventory continues a slow downward trend beginning in 2003", said Gene Danekas Director of Missouri Agricultural Statistics. "This December level is the lowest quarterly inventory since March 1992." Breeding hogs are estimated at 345,000 head, up 5,000 head from both a year ago and last quarter. Market hogs are estimated at 2.405 million head, down 155,000 head from the same period last year and 105,000 below September 1, 2005.

The September-November 2005 pig crop totaled 1.57 million head, up 2.9 percent from the same quarter a year earlier but 1.7 percent below the comparable period two years ago. There were 175,000 sows farrowed during this quarter with an average of 8.95 pigs per litter. Farrowing intentions for December-February 2006 are forecast at 170,000 sows, even with the actual farrowings during the same period last year and two years ago. March-May 2006 farrowings are also forecast at 170,000 head, the same as actual farrowings during that period both last year and two years ago.

United States Hog Inventory Up Slightly

U.S. inventory of all hogs and pigs on December 1, 2005 was 61.2 million head. This was up slightly from December 1, 2004, but down 1 percent from September 1, 2005.

Breeding inventory, at 6.01 million head, was up 1 percent from last year and last quarter. Market hog inventory, at 55.2 million head, was up slightly from last year but down 1 percent from last quarter.

The September-November 2005 U.S. pig crop, at 26.1 million head, was up 1 percent from 2004 and up 2 percent from 2003. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 2.89 million head, unchanged from last year. The sows farrowed during this quarter represented 48 percent of the breeding herd. The average pigs saved per litter was 9.03 for the September-November 2005 period, compared to 8.96 last year. Pigs saved per litter by size of operation ranged from 7.50 for operations with 1-99 hogs and pigs to 9.10 for operations with more than 5,000 hogs and pigs.

U.S. hog producers intend to have 2.88 million sows farrow during the December 2005-February 2006 quarter, up 1 percent from the actual farrowings during the same period in both 2005 and 2004. Intended farrowings for March-May 2006, at 2.89 million sows, are up slightly from 2005 and up 1 percent from 2004.

The total number of hogs under contract, owned by operations with over 5,000 head but raised by contractees, accounted for 39 percent of the total U.S. hog inventory, up from 38 percent from last year.