Corn Prices Hurting Pig Farmers

We've been tracking increasing food prices for the last few months and now it seems that it's not just human food that is skyrocketing in price.

The cost of corn has gone up over four dollars in the last year leaving local pig farmers struggling to pay for their animals feed.

Farmers tell us more than 85% of a pigs diet consists of corn.

One local pig raiser says he goes through about a thousand bushels of corn each month. That's around the size of a full truck load.

Kyle Stephens says feeding over 4,000 pigs a year is sending costs through the roof. "Twenty-four months ago I'd gotten a load of corn and it cost a bushel and the corn I got Friday cost cents a bushel so it's just a huge increase in a short amount of time.

Stephens says some pig farmers are close to going out of business and that is why he is trying to cut costs wherever he can. "We don't have the liberty of hiring more even though there are times when we might need more help.

While Stephens says the demand for show pigs is keeping his business profitable consumer swine producers are not as lucky.

"Our commercial industry is in such a hard place right now because our cost of production is up at least 250% from where they were a year ago and we're still getting paid what we were then.

As for the future Stephens says there is no relief in sight. "There are rumors a bushel will reach 8 dollars sometime this summer."

He is also cutting costs by trying to eliminate waste and by keeping his pigs in the best shape he can.