Iowa, U.S. swine herd continues to grow

Iowa, U.S. swine herd continues to grow

Berdo Pork-188Iowa has apparently rebounded nicely from the two-year-long battle with Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus.

The United States Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service issued its quarterly Hogs and Pigs Report on June 26 that showed Iowa’s inventory of pigs at 21 million head as of June 1.

The March 1 report showed 20.4 million hogs on Iowa family farms.

PEDV surfaced in Iowa and the U.S. in spring of 2013 and killed or forced humane euthanasia of millions of piglets. Since then, producers’ increased bio-security measures, increased immunity buildup in the sow herd and new vaccines have helped reduce the spread and prevalence of the disease.

USDA says the inventory of hogs on all U.S. farms was 66.9 million head on June 1. That’s up slightly from March 1, but 9 percent higher than the same date a year ago.

Of the total U.S. inventory, 61 million are market hogs and the remaining 5.93 million are kept for breeding purposes. Between March and May, 29.6 million pigs were weaned on U.S. farms, an 8 percent increase from a year earlier. Farmers weaned a record high average of 10.37 pigs per litter during the second quarter.

Producers intend to have 2.91 million sows farrow between June and August and 2.87 million sows are expected to farrow from September to November of this year.

Iowa continues to be the nation’s leader in pork production with Minnesota second at 8.05 million head and North Carolina third with 8 million hogs.

USDA surveyed more than 8,100 hog farmers across the nation during the first part of June to obtain an accurate measurement of the U.S. swine industry.