According to the USDA’s quarterly U.S. and Canadian Hogs and Pigs report, the second fewest number of hogs is now being kept for breeding in Canada in at least a decade.
The report notes that the number of Canadian hogs kept for breeding now sits at 1.3 million as of July 1, down 20 per cent since its high in 2004. The herd size has been shrinking ever since, and particularly in the past two years.
In July, Statistics Canada reported that of the 7,050 hog farms across the country, overall hog inventory was down 10.6 per cent from July 2009. Currently there are an estimated 11.8 million hogs in Canada, compared to 12.1 million a year earlier.
Statistics Canada also notes that the number of hogs sent to slaughter totalled 5.1 million during the second quarter of 2010, down 0.8 per cent from the same period in 2009. That compares to a peak of more than six million in the last quarter of 2004. Meanwhile, there were a total of 1.4 million hogs exported during the second quarter, down 14.1 per cent since 2009.