Corn crop and pig weights

have felt obliged to tell you that you were dreaming and/or crazy. This week we’re killing over 420,000 pigs per day and receiving that price. If you bought corn on the $2 drop in price in September, suddenly pork production is a lot of fun again.

Based on the corn prices of the past few weeks, and projections for continued strong exports, many are predicting a very profitable year for pork producers in 2012. Imagine, making profits feeding corn costing $6-$7/bu.

So far, corn yield reports are coming in above expectations from most regions. I talked with a producer in eastern Iowa this morning who is running over 200 bu/a on all the corn he’s harvested to date, with beans yielding 60 bu/a.

Corn quality appears to be very good also. No reports of mycotoxins from upper Midwest producers. Probably the biggest concern is the amount of ears that are dropping due to the high winds we’ve had. Last Friday had gusts above 40 mph and today we’re seeing gusts to 30 mph in the Mankato area. I had the opportunity to go pheasant hunting earlier this week for 1 day in South Dakota. In walking corn rows I counted an awful lot of corn ears on the ground.

On another note, pig weights at slaughter are climbing rapidly. For the past 3 weeks Iowa-Southern Minnesota liveweights are the same as last year. These weights are up considerably from the summer weights in late July and early August. From the week ending September 3 to the week ending October 8, live weights in this market increased 9.1 lb/pig or 1.8 lb/week. Last week live weight at slaughter averaged 272.6 lb, tied for the heaviest slaughter weights in the Iowa-Southern Minnesota market for the first week in October ever. Many production systems are now targeting 295 lb as their live weight at slaughter, especially if they are selling to Tyson or Cargill.

One thought on “Corn crop and pig weights

  1. Dear Mike,

    You shoot a lot more birds if you look up, rather than counting corn on the ground.

    Just a hypothesis from a city kid!

    Thanks for your report.

    Mark S

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