Industry Partners

Prairie Swine Centre is an affiliate of the University of Saskatchewan

Prairie Swine Centre is grateful for the assistance of the George Morris Centre in developing the economics portion of Pork Insight.

Financial support for the Enterprise Model Project and Pork Insight has been provided by:

Author(s): Gary D. Dial and Chris Rademacher, Brad Freking, Mark Weaver
Publication Date: January 1, 0000
Reference: College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN New Fashion Pork, Inc., Jackson, Swine Graphics Enterprises, Webster City, IA
Country: USA


It has been said all-to-often, but it remains true, that the grow-finish phase of production is, by far, the financially most important phase of a commercial swine operation. It is the stage where most production costs are incurred. Relative to other production phases, grow-finish contributes the largest portion of total feed cost/market pig, the greatest single cost of production. And, since the growing pig spends more time in this phase than in any other phase of production, grow-finish also incurs the highest facility cost/pig, the second greatest production cost. Relative to weaned pig and feeder pig enterprises, the grow-finish enterprise has the greatest pig-to-pig variation in revenues. Inherent with this variation, is a greater opportunity for revenue enhancement than occurs with the sale of either weaned pigs or feeder pigs .
Both production costs and market revenues for the grow-finish phase are driven by biological performance. If pigs grow slowly, facility utilization drops, resulting in higher facility costs/pig. Throughput of the operation, called capacity utilization, is also reduced with slow growing pigs, since either fewer pigs can be grown in the facility or pigs have to be sold at lighter weights. When pigs inefficiently convert feed to gain, feed costs, on both a per pig and per kg basis, are increased. On the revenue side, variation in the growth performance of pigs results in increased market sort loss and variable carcass quality, causing premiums to suffer. Thus, for both cost and revenue reasons, it is essential that the factors influencing the biological performance of the growing pig be understood.

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