Smithfield To Reduce U.S. Sow Herd By Four To Five Percent
Smithfield Foods, Inc. (NYSE: SFD) today announced plans to reduce its U.S. sow herd by four to five percent, or 40,000 to 50,000 sows. This ultimately will result in production of 800,000 to one million fewer market hogs annually.
The company will begin phasing in these reductions immediately. Smithfield currently raises 18 million market hogs annually.
“Given the economics for raising hogs today, we cannot continue on the current path; something has to change,” said C. Larry Pope, president and chief executive officer. “Grain costs continue at record levels, with the potential of escalating, given the current U.S. government policy favoring corn for ethanol. Today the economics are very challenging and we believe that these increased costs will translate eventually into still higher food costs for the American consumer. In the meantime, Smithfield is taking immediate action to improve the efficiencies of our live production operations.”
With sales of $12 billion, Smithfield is the leading processor and marketer of fresh pork and packaged meats in the United States, as well as the largest producer of hogs. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com.
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