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September 26, 2008

Missouri Hog and Pig Numbers Increase 2 Percent

COLUMBIA, MO - The September 1, 2008 inventory of Missouri hogs and pigs is estimated at 3.20 million head according to the USDA’s Missouri Agricultural Statistics Service. This is up 2 percent from a year earlier and the June 1, 2008 estimate. “Export-driven higher prices in recent months are encouraging increased production in Missouri’s pork industry,” says Gene Danekas, Director. “This increase is coming about through significant improvement in litter rates,” according to Gene. Breeding hogs are estimated at 365,000 head, 5 percent below a year ago and 3 percent below last quarter. Market hogs are estimated at 2.84 million head, 3 percent above a year earlier and up 2 percent from June 1, 2008.

The June-August 2008 pig crop was estimated at 1.89 million head, up 4 percent from the same period a year earlier and 3 percent above the March-May 2008 quarter. This is the fourth largest June-August pig crop on record and the largest June-August pig crop since 1979. Farrowings, at 195,000 sows, were unchanged from a year ago and the previous quarter. Pigs saved per litter, at 9.70 pigs, rose 4 percent from the 9.30 pigs saved a year earlier and was up 3 percent from the 9.40 pigs saved the previous quarter. This is the largest litter rate on record for Missouri.

Missouri hog producers intend to farrow 185,000 sows during September-November 2008, 10,000 head below the number that were actually farrowed during the same period a year earlier. During December 2008-February 2009 hog producers also expect to farrow 185,000 sows, 5,000 head less than the actual farrowings in the comparable period a year earlier.

U.S. Hog Inventory Up 2 Percent

U.S. inventory of all hogs and pigs on September 1, 2008 was 68.7 million head. This was up 2 percent from September 1, 2007 and up 1 percent from June 1, 2008. Breeding inventory, at 6.05 million head, was down 3 percent from last year and down 1 percent from the previous quarter. Market hog inventory, at 62.6 million head, was up 3 percent from last year and up 2 percent from last quarter.

The June-August 2008 U. S. pig crop, at 29.3 million head, was up 1 percent from 2007 and up 10 percent from 2006. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 3.08 million head, down 2 percent from 2007 but up 6 percent from 2006. The sows farrowed during this quarter represented 51 percent of the breeding herd. The average pigs saved per litter was 9.51 for the June-August 2008 period, compared to 9.29 last year. Pigs saved per litter by size of operation ranged from 7.80 for operations with 1-99 hogs and pigs to 9.60 for operations with more than 5,000 hogs and pigs. U.S. hog producers intend to have 3.01 million sows farrow during the September-November 2008 quarter, down 5 percent from the actual farrowings during the same period in 2007, but up 2 percent from 2006.

Intended farrowings for December 2008-February 2009, at 2.98 million sows, are down 3 percent from 2008 but up 3 percent from 2007. The total number of hogs under contract owned by operations with over 5,000 head, but raised by contractees, accounted for 43 percent of the total U.S. hog inventory, up from 40 percent last year.