… The U.S. swine herd continued to rebound from a three-year low, but it could still be awhile for a full return to normal size…

 

 

Swine herd shrinkage could extend into next year

 

By Jeff Brown, FarmWeek (IL)

Oct 10, 2021

 

This story was distributed through a cooperative project between Illinois Farm Bureau and the Illinois Press Association.

 

The U.S. swine herd continued to rebound from a three-year low, but it could still be awhile for a full return to normal size, according to USDA’s quarterly hogs and pigs inventory report released Sept. 24.

 

The inventory of all hogs and pigs as of Sept. 1 came in at 75.4 million head. That’s down 4% from last year, but up 1% from the previous quarter. It’s also up more than 2% from the March report, which found the fewest pigs since June 2018.

 

However, low farrowing numbers during the quarter could indicate the smaller herd might persist into 2022, DTN Analyst Rick Kment said.

 

“Farrowing intentions in September through November, and December through May are expected at 96% of year-ago levels,” he said. “It is not until next spring that farrowing intentions are expected to inch higher. But, even then, it appears that limited expansion is likely to be seen at this point.”

 

Illinois came in fourth among pig-producing states, with 5.5 million head, trailing Iowa, Minnesota and North Carolina. Illinois’ average litter size of 10.9 pigs is an improvement from both the previous quarter and last year but below the national average of 11.1.

 

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