Analysis Pigs & Pork

America counts more pigs as price rises

July 1, 2024 - Matthijs Bremer

The American pig population has slightly grown in the past months. On the other hand, the sow population has decreased. However, a higher number of piglets per sow compensates for the lower number of sows.

According to data from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), the American pig population has grown by 1% compared to the previous count. This represents a limited increase compared to the same period a year ago.

On June 1, the United States had a total of 74.5 million pigs. 68.5 million of them are market hogs. Additionally, the country has 6 million sows. Unlike the overall pig population, the sow population has decreased in size. Compared to a year ago, the country has 3% fewer sows. The majority of the decrease occurred earlier. Compared to the penultimate count, the decrease was negligible. However, there is a 1.7% increase in piglet production per breeding sow.

Low pig prices
The relative stagnation of the pig population aligns with the price trend of the American pig population. The American pig price has improved since January due to a strong export position. At the beginning of the year, the pig price was $1.01 per kilogram. By Wednesday, June 26, the price had risen to $1.96 per kilogram. This is still not sufficient to offset the losses from earlier this year.

Matthijs Bremer

Matthijs Bremer is a market specialist in pork, beef, and poultry meat at DCA Market Intelligence. He also monitors the protein transition, keeping an eye on developments in cultured meat and meat substitutes.
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