This past week I’ve been reviewing pig inventories as reported in both the Jun 1 USDA Hogs and Pigs report and the 2012 USDA Census of Ag. As readers of this blog well know, prices on the Chicago board have moved higher for the nearby contracts as USDA began documenting the impact of the PEDv on market inventories.

Of interest to me was the ongoing shift of market inventory back to the Midwest. Until the mid 1990’s Iowa, Illinois and Minnesota were number 1, 2 and 3 in pig inventories. As the industry restructured, Illinois dropped to number 4 in inventory with N Carolina firmly embedded as number 2.

Iowa continues to maintain its dominance in the US swine industry with 32.4% of all kept for market animals. Minnesota is now number 2 with 12.8% of the kept for market inventory with N Carolina number 3 with 12.2% and Illinois number 4 with 8.4%.

However, North Carolina leads the nation when it comes to the concentration of pig numbers per acre of farmland. According to the numbers in the 2012 Census of Ag, the top 8 counties in pig density when ranked according to pigs per acre of farmland are located in N Carolina as are 11 of the most dense 20 counties. Duplin County leads the nation with 7.5 pigs per acre of farmland followed by Sampson (6.4) and Jones (6.2).

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