This market update is a PorkNetwork weekly column reporting trends in weaner pig prices and swine facility availability.  All information contained in this update is for the week ended January 31, 2014.

The weaner pig breakeven price is $85.56, up $4.97 for the week. Hog futures were higher for the week and feed prices were mostly unchanged. The breakeven price is based on closing futures prices on January 31, 2014 and the assumptions outlined below.

Margin over variable costs was $108.40 and refers to the revenue generated from raising a weaner pig that contribute to fixed costs and pig purchase costs. In other words, if the alternative is to idle facilities every dollar between the purchase price and margin over variable costs contributes toward covering those fixed costs such as facility, labor, utilities, property taxes and insurance.

For the Week Ended


Weekly Change

Weaner pig breakeven



Margin over variable costs



Pig purchase month

Feb, 2014

Feb, 2014

Live hog sale month

Aug, 2014

Jul, 2014

Lean hog futures



Lean hog basis/cwt



Weighted average sbm futures



Weighted average sbm basis



Weighted average corn futures



Weighted average corn basis



Nursery cost/space/yr



Finisher cost/space/yr



Feed costs per head



Assumed carcass weight



Note that the weaner pig profitability calculations provide weekly insight into the relative value of pigs based on assumptions that may not be reflective of your individual situation. In addition, these calculations don’t take into account market supply and demand dynamics for weaner pigs and space availability.

National Direct Delivered Feeder Pig Report

Cash traded weaner pig volume was below average with 16,813 head reported, down 25 percent from the previous week and just 48 percent of average. Cash prices were $83.10 per head, down $2.06 from the previous week.

Graph 1 shows weaner pig cash prices per head starting in 2011. Current prices are roughly 46 percent higher than the 3 year average. Over the past 3 years prices have held relatively steady through January and February and then lost 30 to 45 percent through March and April.  



Weekly change

Cash sale weaner pig volume



Weighted average cash price/head



Cash low price/head



Cash high price/head







The number of reported weaner pigs sold on a formula basis was 40,833 head at an average price of $49.50. That’s down $2.06 per head from the previous week.

ePigflow is collecting and reporting facility information. Below is a sample of facility contracts that have been written in the past 12 months.

Ryan Cooney is general manager of ePigflow, an online market for weaner pigs, feeder pigs and facility spaces. You can find available pigs and facilities by visiting