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Veteran Advisor

Loks like to many sows going to market.

Talked to several guys this wek who are just sick about the price of cull sows.


Total sows tabulated 6038(approx 48% of daily sow slaughter)
             16-Aug-12          09-Aug-12          18-Aug-11
Weight Range  Average   Average  Average  Average   Average  Average
               Weight    Price    Weight   Price    Weight    Price
300-450 lbs     402      $34.31    391     $33.54     388     $68.44
450-500 lbs     475      $39.37    476     $38.18     480     $75.41
500-550 lbs     524      $41.97    529     $39.94     525     $76.41
550 and up      573      $41.97    569     $39.98     569     $77.97
Weekly Totals
300-450 lbs     400      $35.04    398     $32.94     393     $69.47
450-500 lbs     478      $39.23    477     $38.22     478     $74.66
500-550 lbs     526      $41.62    524     $40.50     524     $75.89
550 and up      570      $41.87    568     $40.94     571     $77.96
Weight Range  Average  Average
              Weight    Price
300-400 lbs     375     $35.15
400-450 lbs     424     $33.67
450-500 lbs     475     $39.37
500-550 lbs     524     $41.97
550 and up      573     $41.97
Weekly Totals
300-400 lbs     374     $35.25
400-450 lbs     422     $34.87
450-500 lbs     478     $39.23
500-550 lbs     526     $41.62
550 and up      570     $41.87

Basically looking at half the price of last year. OUCH!

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21 Replies

Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

Lol. Guy I know, back in '98, found his best quote for a couple of cull boars at .04/lb.  


Partly out of pique and partly becasue he didn't want to burn the gas, he gave them both a shot in the head and dragged 'em out to the compost pile.


Now THAT'S a bad market.


Come to think of it if he was using any high class ammo (doubt a .22LR will do the job on a big boar's skull) and the fuel for the loader to carry 'em off, doubt that he came out ahead by much in comparison either.

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Re: Looks like to many sows going to market.

Well it is happening again. It costs more to truck boars to market then what they are worth. Boars, and some sows are getting euthanized at the farm. Many small pigs are also getting euthanized. Pregnant sows are being aborted. The livestock industry are making the hard choices to deal with these prices. I read that the hog production industry is losing $60 million a week and will for at least a year!

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Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

Part of the decision that they made when they built hog factories was about the political environment they'd be operating in. Could be they got it wrong- not taking into account the notion that we'd go crazy to blow the feed supply out of tailpipes.



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Veteran Advisor

Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

Yep Nox. We have had many guys on here tlak about the Cheap corn benefitting livestock. What it really benefited was big ,pork,bigchicken,bigdairy,and big beef.  The small family dairy farm that was raising grains and livestock really took it in the shorts as they had acres of land that was tied up in forages that didn't get subsidies and livestock that was to cheaply priced to cover production expenses. The continual cry for more goverment assistance always came byy way of cheaper grain.  That really only helped to continue the consolidation of Livestock and drive small farmers out of livestock. 


The worst part is that going forward the small farmer will make a kiling. Only problem is there rfen't many small livestock guys gonna make it past this little drought hicup.

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Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

I agree.


Was even thinking about making re-entry into livestock but the costs are steep.


Also been a number of years since dese 'ol bones been bounced by a sow or cow- probably underestimate the physical factor.

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Senior Contributor

Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

And, you don't think there will be a new crop of livestock guys ready and with financing to enter a new livestock era when the worm turns? This is not the first  down turn in the livestock business, and won't be the last. Timing is everything.

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

It will not be nearly as easy to get into the livestock business, as it once was.

There had been sows on this place, from the time my grandpa bought it at the end of the Great Depression, until 2008.  My facilities were basically worn out, and I had to either remodel, or phase out of hogs.  I bought feeder pigs for a while, until the supply dried up (my finishing floor had some life left in it).  Anyway, you literally can't build a farrowing house, and raise pigs anymore, like you used to.
You have to get easements, permits, etc, etc. plus install a manure pit, lagoon, etc, etc.  It all adds up to one thing:  You can't be a 'small' hog farmer, and make a living out of it anymore.  Now, you can have maybe 10 sows, and raise pigs as a hobby, and be fine, but if you want to have 100+ sows, you need to have an environmental impact study, get proper permits and licenses, etc. 
It all added up to more than I was willing to do, at the time, and I wasn't even 40 years old yet.  Now, if you have existing facilities, that are sound, you may be grandfathered in, but rules, regulations, and the expenses of keeping in compliance, has pretty much guaranteed that only a big operation can succeed, and I didn't want to live next to 5000 sows.

Funny, how regulations to protect the environment, and control odor, have actually caused more manure to be stored in one spot, along with the concentrations of smell.
I used a straw bedding system to minimize odor, and people would often come over, and comment that they never even realized I raised hogs, until they were coming down the driveway, and saw them in the pens.  I doubt a new facility like mine could even be built today, in a large enough scale, to feed a family.


Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

nebrfarmr is exactly right. You can not just start raising hogs anymore like it was done 20 years ago. First you have to get a premise id number then you sign papers if you are raising "a" or "b" hogs (canadian or U.S. born) If they are Canadian you can only sell them to certain packers on the day they want them, which might be 300 miles away. Then the next thing you do is become pqa plus certified (pork quality assurance). Then after those classes you then find an advisor and have your site assessment done. Those advisors are few and far between and charge a lot. Now if your facilities do not pass inspection you must make the appropriate changes to pass. If you get all this done you have to become tqa certified. (trucker quality assurance) or you will not be able to haul them to the packer without this. Now most packers are full so getting a bid from them will be if they need them. I can assure you there will not be 1 person get into raising hogs even if corn goes to $2.00/ bushel. Did I mention permits from your local county! Oh and also the permits needed to haul the manure. Welcome to pork production 101. The government is going to regulate all of agriculture into moving to South America.  

Senior Contributor

Re: Loks like to many sows going to market.

High sow liquidation yells rationing underway.


THAT, when have we rationed enough, is the #1 key to grain prices.

Once rationed, proes don't go sideways.


See 1973, 1988, 1980 and when else?




NGas finds are huge in PA NY dairy country, will royalty winners sell

their herds??

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