COVID-19 Working Paper: Changes in Regional Hog Slaughter During COVID-19

Date
2021-12
Authors
Schulz, Lee
Schulz, Lee L.
Vaiknoras, Kate
MacLachlan, Matthew J.
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Schulz, Lee
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Economics
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Economics
Abstract
This working paper describes how COVID-19 affected the pork packing industry, gives an overview of this industry, and measures changes in regional slaughter volumes in 2020. We find different effects of COVID-19 across regions. Some regions experienced a prolonged decline in hog slaughter compared with 2019, while in other regions sharp declines only lasted a few weeks. Slaughter counts in the major pork-producing regions declined for three weeks at the end of April and early May but recovered to 2019 levels by June 2020. Minor processing regions had mixed reactions to the pandemic. For instance, Region 2 (New Jersey and New York) experienced a large decline in slaughter, but, unlike major processing regions, the shock persisted throughout the year—slaughter rates were lower than 2019 levels. Overall, most regions in 2020 had increases in total slaughter compared with 2019, suggesting the industry suffered at the beginning of the pandemic but adjusted production and at least partially recovered.
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Works produced by employees of the U.S. Government as part of their official duties are not copyrighted within the U.S. The content of this document is not copyrighted.
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Pork, pork processing, hogs, hog slaughter, coronavirus, COVID-19, supply chain
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