US Hog Population Rises: 74.5M Head Strong

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) released its Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report today, revealing that as of June 1, 2024, there were 74.5 million hogs and pigs on U.S. farms. This figure represents a 1% increase from June 2023 and a slight rise from March 1, 2024. Among these, 68.5 million were market hogs, while 6.01 million were kept for breeding purposes.

The report highlights that between March and May 2024, U.S. farms weaned 34.0 million pigs, a 2% increase compared to the same period last year. The average number of pigs weaned per litter during this time was 11.56. Looking ahead, U.S. hog producers plan to have 2.96 million sows farrow between June and August 2024, and 2.94 million sows farrow between September and November 2024.

Iowa remains the state with the largest hog inventory, boasting 24.6 million head. Minnesota and North Carolina follow with inventories of 9.20 million and 7.60 million head, respectively. To compile this data, NASS surveyed 4,524 operators nationwide during the first half of June, utilizing various methods including online submissions, mail, telephone, and face-to-face interviews.

The implications of these findings are significant for the agriculture sector and investors. The increase in hog and pig inventory indicates a robust and growing swine industry, which could lead to a rise in pork production. This growth might help stabilize pork prices, benefiting both consumers and producers. However, it also suggests that producers will need to manage resources effectively, including feed, healthcare, and housing for the growing number of animals.

For investors, the report signals potential opportunities in the pork production supply chain, including feed suppliers, veterinary services, and equipment manufacturers. The increase in weaned pigs and the planned farrowings suggest a strong pipeline for future production, which could translate to sustained demand for related agricultural products and services.

The live #StatChat session on the @usda_nass X account at 4 p.m. EDT today provides an opportunity for stakeholders to engage directly with NASS experts and gain deeper insights into the report’s findings. This interactive session can help clarify any uncertainties and offer a platform for discussing the broader implications of the data.

Overall, the Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report offers a comprehensive snapshot of the U.S. swine industry, providing valuable information for farmers, industry stakeholders, and investors to make informed decisions.

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