United States inventory of all hogs and pigs on December 1, 2017 was 73.2 million head, a 2% increase from December 1, 2016, but down slightly from September 1, 2017, according to the latest U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “Quarterly Hogs & Pigs” report.
Breeding inventory, at 6.18 million head, was up 1% from last year, and up 1% from the previous quarter, the report showed.
Market hog inventory, at 67.1 million head, was 2% higher than last year, but down slightly from last quarter.
The September-November 2017 pig crop, at 33.4 million head, was up 3% from 2016. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 3.11 million head, up 2% from 2016. The sows farrowed during this quarter represented 51% of the breeding herd. The average pigs saved per litter was a record high of 10.74 for the September-November period, compared to 10.63 last year.
Pigs saved per litter by size of operation ranged from 7.90 for operations with 1-99 hogs and pigs to 10.80 for operations with more than 5,000 hogs and pigs.
United States hog producers intend to have 3.07 million sows farrow during the December-February 2018 quarter, up 3% from the actual farrowings during the same period in 2017, and up 5% from 2016. Intended farrowings for March-May 2018, at 3.08 million sows, are up 2% from 2017, and up 4% from 2016.
The total number of hogs under contract owned by operations with over 5,000 head, but raised by contractees, accounted for 47% of the total United States hog inventory, unchanged from the previous year.