Hogs and Pigs Report Reaction: Lee Schulz Shares Initial Thoughts

Jul 03, 2023

Following the release of the Hogs and Pigs inventory report in June, Lee Schulz, livestock marketing specialist with Iowa State University Extension, joined AgriTalk to discuss his initial thoughts on the data. 

While Schulz says there weren’t any major surprises, he noted that there was one unexpected statistic.

“The big shocker to me in this report is when you look at productivity. We’ve seen pigs saved per litter up 3.3%,” Schulz notes. “We haven't seen that in a long time, you have to go back to 2019. And then even before that, it's kind of when we were coming out of [Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus]. So that pigs saved per litter, the productivity, kind of masked what we've seen in lower sows farrowing and our pig crop was actually larger year over year.”

Averaging 11.36 pigs per litter in the U.S. in the recent report, Schulz believes this pigs saved per litter number is higher due to two main reasons. First, “middling” the last several quarters, due to higher disease incidents and production struggles from last year likely played into lower numbers, Schulz notes. Second, sow liquidation has likely caused producers to cull some of the least productive sows or bring in more productive gilts, which may have led to the overall average increase.

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