Higher than expected third-quarter U.S. commercial hog slaughter has led to a revised higher pork production forecast for 2011, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's latest world agricultural supply and demand estimates.

In the Quarterly Hogs and Pigs report, released on September 28, producers indicated they farrowed about 1% fewer sows in June–August and intended to keep farrowings near year-ago levels into early 2012. However, the number of pigs per litter continues to grow and is expected to support increased pig crops and supplies of slaughter hogs in 2012. 

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Pork imports are unchanged from September estimates, but the export forecast for 2012 is reduced slightly as expected increased production in several Asian markets may limit export opportunities later in the year. Hog prices are lowered for the last quarter of 2011 and into 2012 as hog supplies and slaughter are forecast higher.