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CME: More Sows Being Pushed to Market

by 5m Editor
16 July 2012, at 8:04am

US - Sharp rise in feed costs and softer wholesale pork prices may be pushing more sows to market. As with cows, we are looking at data that is about two weeks old, write Steve Meyer and Len Steiner.

However, the weekly sow prices tell the story. Light sow prices have declined about $4/cwt or 8 per cent in the last 10 days while heavier and better quality sow values are down about 3 per cent during the same period. The IA/MN average hog carcass price for the week was quoted at $96.34/cwt, about 3 per cent lower than the week before.

Hog prices were under pressure all week and on Friday values closed at $91.86, down about 8 per cent from where they started the week last Monday. While belly prices remain firm, weakness in a number of retail grilling items has negatively impacted carcass values. High temperatures across the country appear to have limited grilling demand, with prices for ribs and loins down sharply this week.

Weak wholesale values had packers taking a wait and see approach. Pork exports have been good through May but it will be difficult to match the pace of the second half of 2011. Reports indicating that China pork production in Jan - Jun period of 2012 was up 6 per cent from last year.