As of September 1, the U.S. inventory of hogs and pigs was 70.0 million head. That’s up two percent from 2015 levels. The breeding herd inventory is up one percent at just over 6 million head. The market hog inventory, at 64.8 million head, was up three percent from last year. There was an upward revision of the December-February pig crop of 560,000 head.
Industry consultant Bob Brown says that has been a consistent pattern.
“Seven of the last nine pig crops have been over 30 million head with the last five in a row. It is interesting that in the June report the September- November pig crop was revised upward by roughly the same amount about over 550,000 head. This is kind of a tough trend to be falling into here.”
The June-August pig crop was the highest ever.
Kevin Grier, who is a market analyst from Guelph, Ontario, said the expansion that has been found in the U.S. is not happening north of the border.
“Stepping back, clearly the growth going on here is based on a certain level of optimism. That could be flushed out this quarter coming up but nevertheless these numbers are based on a certain optimism in the industry that doesn’t seem to exist in Canada. We don’t have this kind of growth in Canada so it is interesting to watch in the United States.”
Grier adds producers were spoiled prior to July in terms of stability of pricing and stability of slaughter.