Close to 13,000 hogs perish in Brazil flood-hit state

By Thomson Reuters May 20, 2024 | 11:19 AM

By Ana Mano

SAO PAULO (Reuters) -Hog farmers in Rio Grande do Sul lost an estimated 12,600 animals after floods submerged entire towns and destroyed critical infrastructure in Brazil’s southernmost state, hog farmers lobby ACSURS said on Monday after compiling data for two weeks.

ACSURS President Valdecir Folador said some 30 farms were affected by the deadly flooding, including suppliers to BRF SA and JBS SA’s Seara processed foods division.

The companies did not have an immediate comment.

Folador said the total number of hogs on farms in Rio Grande do Sul is around 5 million, noting hog deaths directly related to the floods were relatively small compared with the size of the herd statewide.

He pondered, however, there will be other indirect losses to farmers and companies, especially because floods have blocked roads and cut access to food and water supplies for some days on certain properties.

According to Folador, lack of feed contributed to a reduction of animal weight on farms where food had to be rationed and female animals were nursing offspring.

Farmers supplying BRF’s plant in the Lajeado area where among the most affected by the floods, Folador said, estimating they lost at least 60% of all hogs who perished from the catastrophic rains.

(Reporting by Ana ManoEditing by Alistair Bell)