USDA’s June Hogs and Pigs report states the nation’s market hog inventory is up 9.4% compared to a year ago and the breeding herd is up 1.2%. The pre-release trade forecast was for an 8.9% increase in the market inventory and a 2.1% increase in the breeding herd.
USDA said the June 1 inventory of market hogs weighing 180 pounds or more was up 13.4%, the 120-179 pound inventory was up 11.5%, the 50-119 pound inventory was up 8.7% and the inventory of market hogs weighing 50 pounds or less was up 6.6%.
March-May farrowings were up 1.4% and pigs per litter were up 6.0% yielding a spring pig crop that is 7.5% larger than March-May 2014, according to USDA. The report predicted summer farrowings will be down 2.5% and fall farrowings down 4.3%.
There were 653.6 million pounds of pork in cold storage at the end of May. That is down 6.7% from last month’s record, but up 13.5% from a year ago. Frozen pork was at record levels early this year as labor troubles slowed exports from the west coast.
Hog prices declined for the fourth consecutive week. Thursday’s negotiated carcass price for plant delivered hogs averaged $73.42/cwt which is $2.81 lower than a week earlier.
Hog slaughter last week totaled 2.143 million head, up 0.4% from the week before and up 12.2% from same week last year. The average live slaughter weight of barrows and gilts in Iowa-Minnesota last week was 279.4 pounds, down 1.5 pounds from the week before, down 5.6 pounds from a year ago, and the lightest for any week since October 2013. The July lean hog futures contract closed today at $75.45/cwt, down 30 cents for the week. August hog futures ended the week at $72.82/cwt, down $1.00 from the week before.