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Factors that are influencing pork industry growth

Some pork producers say there are several economic issues that are impacting the growth of the industry.

President of the Nebraska Pork Producers Association Mark Wright with Whitman Pig Company says profitability has been a significant factor, and California’s Proposition 12 law could be the biggest threat due to the cost of retrofitting facilities. “It’s going to come down to a business decision.  Obviously, pork producers that convert to Prop 12, there will be a cost up front.”  

Scott Spilker owns a nursery to finish operation and says consumer demand is holding steady. “We can compete with higher priced beef so we may see a little bump in demand domestically because of that.”

Bill Luckey tells Brownfield diseases like PRRS, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome, continue to impact many operations. “It depends on which strain you get.  Some of them are easier to manage and work through, while others are pretty devastating.”

Steve Martin with the Alliance for the Future of Agriculture in Nebraska says many producers aren’t expanding due to high input costs. “Interest rates have gone up. Supplies have gone up.  Cost of materials have gone up.”

But, the producers, say that the hog market is slowly rebounding and that could incentivize some expansion.

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