Livestock Losses Mounting after Florence

Dan Industry News Release, Pork, Poultry

Recovery is underway in North Carolina after Hurricane Florence. The number of livestock lost to flooding is climbing in the aftermath.


Image courtesy of North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

The North Carolina Ag Department says 5,500 hogs and 3.4 million poultry were lost due to the hurricane. In addition to damage on farms around the area, other reports included wind damage to hog farms, as well as substantial road damage. That makes for a lot of logistical challenges for farmers to get feed to their livestock, electricity on farms, and just getting to the barns successfully to care for their animals.

Smithfield Foods said just one of their 200 company-owned farms in North Carolina had floodwaters inundate the hog houses and the lagoon. The Smithfield processing plant in Tar Heel, North Carolina, is scheduled to ramp up production as roads become more passable.

Sanderson Farms reported that 60 broiler houses and four feeder houses were all flooded. About 30 of the independent farms that supply Sanderson with birds are isolated by floodwaters and unreachable right now. That amounts to about 6 million birds that they can’t get feed too. Sanderson reports there was no damage to processing facilities, feed mill, or two hatcheries. Operations resumed at the feed mill on Monday and on Tuesday at the processing plant.

Source: National Association of Farm Broadcasting News Service.