Animal Industry Report

Extension Number

ASL R2362



Summary and Implications

Production of niche pork has been expanding in response to increased demand. Little information is known about production efficiency of niche pork. This report provides information on production efficiency from 41 niche pork producers.

The average female breeding herd size was 91 females. The average feed efficiency was 4.31 pounds of feed per pound of pork produced. The average feed efficiency for the top 15 herds was 3.74 and it was 4.25 for the bottom 15 herds. Average labor use was .87 hours per hundred pounds of pork produced. About one of every four pigs born alive died before weaning. Another eight percent died from weaning to market. Breeding herd death loss was in the 4 to 6 percent range.

The information summarized here shows striking production differences in many areas between the top 15 and bottom 15 producers. The areas with the largest differences are places with the most potential to help producers improve. Educational programming that targets these areas is being developed to help these producers make changes to improve their operations, which in turn will improve the position of this sector of the industry.

Copyright Holder

Iowa State University