Livestock News for May 7

Official: Most hog farms in China won’t replenish herds

According to, China’s Agriculture Ministry says more than 80% of hog farms in China have decided not to replenish herds lost to African Swine Fever, leaving a gap in production. Reports say China’s hog production has dropped 21% since the first ASF outbreak. The decline will lead to lower demand for soybean and feed products but will increase demand for pork products since pork accounts for more than 60% of the country’s meat consumption. ASF has now spread to all provinces of China.

Americans craving more cheese

Dairy Herd Management reported that despite their lack luster desire to drink fluid milk, American’s are craving more cheese and driving up domestic consumption. According to a recent RaboResearch article, per capita consumption of cheese grew from 14.3 lb. to 36.9 lb., a 22.6 lb. increase. Demand for natural and Italian-style cheese, such as cheddar, colby, mozzarella and jack cheeses, has fueled this consumption growth. 

Fire at Michigan poultry ranch kills 250k hens

According to the Detroit News, About 250,000 hens have been killed during a fire at a mid-Michigan poultry operation. The blaze started Tuesday evening in a barn at Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch in Saranac, east of Grand Rapids. Operations resumed Wednesday. reports that the ranch supplies eggs to McDonald’s restaurants and other customers.

Portions of South Texas counties establish fever tick quarantines

According to data from the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC), 2,655 premises, totaling 950,500 acres, are under quarantine in Texas due to fever ticks, and ranchers along the U.S.-Mexico border say the disease they carry has devastated their operations, Drover’s CattleNetwork reported. Fever ticks can carry a parasite that causes Babesia bovis or B. bigemina, commonly known as cattle fever. The Babesia organism attacks and destroys red blood cells, causing acute anemia, high fever, and enlargement of the spleen and liver, ultimately resulting in death for up to 90 percent of susceptible naive cattle. TAHC says portions of eight South Texas counties have established fever tick quarantines. The counties include, Cameron, Live Oak, Kinney, Maverick, Starr, Webb, Willacy and Zapata.