According to the USDA’s Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report, the U.S. expanded the Sept. 1 breeding herd by 2 percent, surpassing analyst expectations. On average, analysts expected a 1.4 percent increase in the Sept. 1 breeding herd.

The USDA pegged the Sept. 1 breeding herd at 5.92 million head – 104,000 above last year’s report.

In June, the USDA surprised analysts by showing a decline in the June 1 breeding herd from 2013. Reasons ranged from Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus not yet being under control, to the transition from traditional gestation stalls to pen gestation. Read, “Hogs & Pigs Report somewhat surprising; blame PEDv.”

The Sept. 1 inventory of all hogs and pigs was down 2 percent from September 2013 at 65.4 million head, falling short of analysts' expectations. On average, analysts expected the Sept. 1 inventory of hogs and pigs to drop by 3.4 percent from 2013.

As the Daily Livestock Report notes in a report here, this drop is largely due to the impact PEDv had on the U.S. pig crop in spring and summer.  

The USDA also reported:

  • Market hog inventory dropped 3 percent from 2013 to 59.4 million head;
  • The June-August 2014 pig crop, at 29.5 million head, was down 1 percent from 2013;
  • 2.91 million sows were farrowed, totaling 2.91 million and representing 50 percent of the breeding; and
  • The average pigs saved per litter was 10.16 for the June-August period, compared to 10.33 last year.

Click here to read the full report.