Marginal Growth In Hog Numbers Over Winter

USDA’s quarterly Hogs and Pigs report showed marginal year-over-year growth in hog population as well as pig crop.  According to the report, inventory at the start of March totaled 72.9 million head, up 170,000 head from a year ago but down two percent from the previous quarter.  Breeding inventory was up 29,000 head at 6.13 million, while hogs destined for market totaled 66.7 million, up 143,000.  The winter’s pig crop totaled 32.1 million head, up 109,000 from last year, while 9,000 fewer sows were farrowing at 2.91 million.  That put the pigs saved per litter rate at 11.02, up slightly from a year ago.  Producers anticipate 2.93 million sows to farrow during the spring, down 37,000 from a year ago.

Missouri’s hog producers turned their attention to breeding during the winter, with 30,000 more sows kept for breeding this March while market hogs saw a four-percent decline year-over-year.  450,000 sows were kept on hand, while 2.8 million hogs were destined for market, bringing the state’s total to 3.25 million.  225,000 sows farrowed in the winter, up 5,000 head from a year ago, and Missouri’s pig crop totaled 2.39 million head, up one percent.  That placed the state’s pigs saved per litter ratio down a tenth to 10.6.  Missouri producers anticipate 230,000 sows to farrow during the spring, also up 5,000 compared to a year ago.