German hog herd drops to lowest level in 30 years
It's getting harder and harder for the German pig industry! Once the largest pig-raising country in Europe, the pig industry is becoming more and more sluggish. Germany is a big exporter of pork. In the past two years, cases of ASF in wild boars and domestic pigs have appeared from time to time. Although they did not cause much direct losses, they had a huge impact on exports and caused the country's pig industry to fall into a wave of rapid decline.
According to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), as of May 3, 2022, the pig herd in Germany was 22.3 million head, which is the lowest pig herd since the reunification of Germany in 1990 (30.8 million head). Compared to November 3, 2021, the inventory is down 6.2%, or 1.48 million head. This is the third major drop in a row. Compared with May 3, 2021, a decrease of 9.8% or 2.42 million heads.
By category, as of May 3, there were 10.3 million fattening pigs, down 6.7% from November 2021, or 735,800. The number of pigs under 50 kg was 3.8 million, down 10.1% (-423,000). The number of breeding sows is 1.5 million, down 6.2% from November 2021, or 98,700.
It is not only the stock that has declined, but the number of pig farms has also dropped significantly. As of May 3, 2022, the number of registered pig farms in Germany was 17,900, a decrease of 5.2% or 1,000 compared to November 2021; compared with the same period of the previous year, the number of pig farms decreased by 9.6% (-1,900).
Compared with the data of the past ten years, the German pig herd and the number of farms have continued to decrease. Since 2012, the pig population has decreased by 20.8% (-58,000), while the number of farms has decreased by 41% (-12,400). As the number of farms has declined more than the number of pigs, the average pig herd per farm has increased from 929 to 1,248 over the past decade.