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USDA Releases Findings from Comprehensive Study on Small Swine Operation

In a recent development, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has unveiled the outcomes of an extensive study examining small swine operations—farms managing fewer than 1,000 hogs. This study, conducted in June and July 2021 by USDA’s National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) in collaboration with the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), delves into health and production practices within this segment. Covering approximately 5,000 swine operations across 38 states, representing around 95% of small-scale U.S. swine farms, the report explores trends in health and disease management, pig movements, mortality rates, slaughter channels, and draws comparisons between small and large operations.

While the results from a concurrent study on larger operations, conducted from July 2021 to January 2022, are still pending, the released findings offer valuable insights into the dynamics of smaller swine operations. The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) actively promoted the NAHMS-NASS study, urging pork producers to participate. The implications of these findings are significant for the pork industry, particularly in understanding the nuances of smaller operations that play a pivotal role as primary suppliers of niche-market products.

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