July 1

7/1 – In Friday’s quarterly Hogs & Pigs report, the USDA confirmed large U.S. pork supplies. Productivity jumped in the March-May quarter, with the number of pigs per litter up 3.5% from a year ago – roughly triple the pre-report estimates. Pigs born during the March-to-May quarter were up 3.7%. And, while farrowing intentions came in below expectations, the USDA is still likely to ratchet up its current 2019 pork production forecast from 3.7% to something closer to 4.0%. So, despite future supply threats from China’s devastating ASF problem, we will have to work through a mountain of pork this year before the pull of China’s protein needs begins impacting U.S. markets later this year or in 2020. Hog futures prices that rose from $52.98/cwt in Feb. to a high of $92.38 on 5/17, have lost steam over the past 6 weeks, closing at 4-month low of $72.10 on Friday.

Sheena Levi