Ag economist says 2024 will be better for pork producers, but not great

An ag economist says with 2023 being one of the least profitable years on record, pork producers need to continue to manage risk aggressively. Steve Meyer chief livestock economist for says 2024 will be better, but not great.  “In fact, I don’t see any profits except for a few months in the summer,” he says.  “You have to look at your financial position and say if I can keep my losses to this or less, I can live to fight another day.  And you have to work with your banker on that.”

He tells Brownfield producers have to do everything possible to reduce costs. “Take a view that you have to minimize losses,” he says.  “Put lids on your costs.  Leave the bottom side open on corn, soybean meal, and whatever else you’re buying, but put a maximum on it.”

At the same time, Meyer says the same philosophy applies to hogs.  “Try to put a floor under them and leave the top side open,” he says.  “We have a lot of clients who are using the insurance products, like Livestock Risk Protection, to do that.”

As for 2025? Meyers says, “The only way we get back to profitability is to reduce supply at some point.”

AUDIO: Steve Meyer,

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