Pork producers are beginning to act nervous about profit prospects this fall. SEW prices continue to decline, both on the contract and spot market as the Chicago futures continue to gradually decline in value. This past week USDA reported SEW prices as low as $27.50/pig delivered. The last time SEW pig spot market prices dropped this low was last November.

The current week to week decline in average price is now steeper than the last years decline. As a point of reference, SEW pig prices typically decline from a high around years end (representing pigs destined for early summer markets) to week 33 of the year (mid-August).

There is still quite a bit of interest in new facilities for construction this summer. Producer calls this week dealt with both wean-finish and nursery construction projects. There does appear to be renewed interest in nursery facilities. In some cases it’s driven by concern about higher heating costs for large wean-finish facilities, sometimes by the desire for better environments for challenged health status pig flows and sometimes by siting issues. A nursery for 2500 pigs is relatively small and doesn’t come close to any animal unit limit that often restricts grow-finish facilities.

The challenge for both nursery and grow-finish facilities is sizing attic inlets large enough to get sufficient air into the attic to supply the large number of ceiling inlets being installed. Producers are asking for more ceiling inlets (usually actuated) so they can get better air quality to all parts of rooms.