“The drought is on-going and the impact on feed prices will be dynamic,” Hurt said. “For those hog producers who can survive the financial pressure over the next year, there can be improvement starting in the last half of 2013. Because hog prices should be higher by that point, short feed supplies will have been rationed out, and prospects for more normal 2013 yields will hopefully be in place.”
Hurt cautioned that those in the animal industry need to articulate the extreme financial stress they are likely to experience in the coming 12 to 15 months.
“The immediate view is that crop producers will bear the brunt of the financial losses, but losses in animal industries will be enormous over the next year, perhaps becoming considerably greater than for the crop sector,” Hurt said. “This articulation by the animal industries is important to alert consumers to higher retail food prices but also to policymakers. Policymakers will likely have an influence on release of CRP lands for grazing and haying, on any potential disaster payments from the federal government, and in helping the EPA/USDA make decisions about the size for the 2013 Renewable Fuels Standard,” he said.