Slaughter since the first of September has been up about what was expected based on the September Hogs and Pigs report from last year, say Ron Plain and Glenn Grimes, University of Missouri agricultural economists.

Slaughter for October and November this year is up a little over 1 percent. This is very close to the expected slaughter indicated by the September Hogs and Pigs report.

Average carcass weights for the week ending November 23 for barrows and gilts were still two pounds below the same date a year earlier. For the week ending November 30, average barrow and gilt live weights in Iowa and Minnesota were down 0.6 pounds from a year earlier.

This data suggests the industry is a little more current with marketings than a year earlier but less current than in early October.

Possibilities appear very high that producers did pull marketings forward during the third quarter, say the Missouri economists.  In late June, average barrow and gilt carcass weights were three pounds above 2001. During August they were close to a year earlier, but by October they were up to three pounds below the same dates in 2001.

A substantial quantity of pork has been removed from the total supply due to lighter weights this year than last.