Has producer market behavior changed?

So far this fall, we’ve been able to remain current in our slaughter of pigs. Based on carcass weights as reported in the daily mandatory report (LM_HG201) it appears that producers have been very aggressive in pulling pigs forward, rather than facing a possible packer capacity issue. Obviously, it also helps that the consumers are consuming our production as witnessed by the lack of increase in frozen stocks. Read More...

Soffits and winter ventilation

As I write this week’s blog, snow is just beginning to fall in the Manakto, MN area, the first snow of the year. Schools west of here have been closing and they are advising no travel in southwest Minnesota due to the combination of snow and high wind. Of course, in spite of warnings all week, many are not prepared for this and there will be many reports of accidents and comments about drivers, etc. Read More...

Slaughter weights for producer sold barrows and gilts

This week the USDA reported Iowa/Southern Minnesota barrow and gilt live weight for last week declined 0.9 lb to 280.9 lb. This was after 3 weeks of only modest weight gains per week. Looking at this data many are asking – how aggressive have producers been at pulling pigs ahead in light of the massive slaughter runs occurring this fall? Read More...

Feed grain basis impact on production costs

With spot packer bids continuing to decline in the face of very large supplies, one of the few opportunities to lower the cost of production is to purchase ingredients at lower prices. Fortunately for the swine industry, the very large corn and soybean harvest in the US that is getting underway has resulted in lower prices versus last year. Many expect the price of corn and soybean meal to remain relatively low for 2-3 years pending a major weather impact on yields. Read More...

Are weights rising slower than normal?

Yesterday, USDA reported that the average live weight for Iowa and Southern Minnesota barrows and gilts for the week ending on September 24 (NW_LS720) was 280.0 lbs, down 1.6 lb from the previous week. Many commentators have noted this decline and have been speculating about whether the decline is an indication that producers have been aggressively pulling pigs forward in the face of rapidly declining bids. Read More...