3/28/2024 | 2:35 PM CDT

USDA released its March 1 Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report on Thursday. (DTN file photo)

This article was originally published at 2:09 p.m. CDT on Thursday, March 28. It was last updated with additional information at 2:35 p.m. CDT on Thursday, March 28.


OMAHA (DTN) — United States inventory of all hogs and pigs on March 1, 2024, was 74.6 million head. This was up 1% from March 1, 2023, but down 2% from Dec. 1, 2023, USDA NASS reported on Thursday.

Breeding inventory, at 6.02 million head, was down 2% from last year, but up slightly from the previous quarter.

Market hog inventory, at 68.6 million head, was up 1% from last year, but down 2% from last quarter.

The December 2023-February 2024 pig crop, at 33.1 million head, was up 2% from last year. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 2.88 million head, down 3% from previous year. The sows farrowed during this quarter represented 48% of the breeding herd. The average pigs saved per litter was 11.53 for the December 2023-February 2024 period, compared to 11.02 last year.

United States hog producers intend to have 2.92 million sows farrow during the March-May 2024 quarter, down 1% from the actual farrowings during the same period one year earlier, and down 2% from the same period two years earlier. Intended farrowings for June-August 2024, at 2.99 million sows, are down 2% from the same period one year earlier, and down 3% from the same period two years earlier.

The total number of hogs under contract owned by operations with over 5,000 head, but raised by contractees, accounted for 52% of the total United States hog inventory, up 1% from the previous year.


All inventory and pig crop estimates for March 2023 through December 2023 were reviewed using final pig crop, official slaughter, death loss, and updated import and export data. The revision made to the December 2023 all hogs and pigs inventory was 1.1%. A revision of 0.5% was made to the September 2023-November 2023 pig crop. The net revision made to the September 2023 all hogs and pigs inventory was 2.4%. A net revision of 3.1% was made to the June-August 2023 pig crop.


“Thursday’s quarterly Hogs and Pigs report will most likely be received as slightly bearish given that the market saw a slight uptick in all the hogs as of March 1, and there are slightly more hogs weighing 120 to 179 pounds and 180-plus than the market expected,” said DTN Livestock Analyst ShayLe Stewart.

“When you break the report down line item by line item, it doesn’t appear as though anything should be off-kilter. But when you consider the revisions made (December all hogs up 1.1% and September all hogs up 2.4%), there are more hogs in the market than originally believed — which usually is tough for the market to stomach.

“I find it noteworthy to mention that the breeding herd is down 2% (6,016,000 head) from a year ago, which again highlights the fact that producers endured painful financial hardships in 2023 and scaled back because of a lack of profitability.

“When looking at summer 2024 hog prices, June, July and August are expected to trade higher, as strong pork demand mixed with thinner supplies is anticipated to keep the market elevated. But Thursday’s report didn’t show as big of a decrease as the market expected for market hogs weighing 120 to 179 pounds. That weight bracket totaled 15,804,000 head, which is steady with a year ago — pre-report estimates believed it would be down by 1%. Hogs weighing over 180 pounds totaled 12,670,000 head which is down 1% from a year ago.

“All in all, Thursday’s report will likely be found to be neutral to slightly bearish by hog producers and market traders,” Stewart said.


To view the full Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report, visit https://www.nass.usda.gov/…

2023 2024 2024 as percent of 2023 (1,000 head) (1,000 head) (percent) All Hogs March 1 74,136 74,571 101 Kept for Breeding 6,146 6,016 98 Kept for Marketing 67,990 68,556 101 WEIGHT BREAKDOWN Under 50 lbs. 20,444 20,749 101 50-119 lbs. 19,049 19,333 101 120-179 lbs. 15,749 15,804 100 180 lbs. and over 12,748 12,670 99 FARROWINGS/INTENTIONS* Dec-Feb 2,952 2,875 97 Mar-May * 2,941 2,915 99 Jun-Aug * 3,040 2,987 98 Dec-Feb Pig Crop 32,537 33,148 102 (number) (number) (percent) Dec-Feb Pigs Per Litter 11.02 11.53 105



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