AGRIBUSINESS: Smithfield Changes Pricing Method

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Smithfield Foods Inc. prices live hogs based on USDA market reports, which have been suspended in the shutdown of the federal government, but last week Smithfield told hog producers it will adjust its pricing method.

A letter sent to producers stated that Smithfield had planned to use market data from September 30th, before the shutdown, to calculate a fair market value; Smithfield now plans to look at current market conditions to set prices.

Smithfield also added that all packers would continue to record all trades to be compliant with Mandatory Price Reporting, and would send those trades to USDA. However, the federal government has said it will not retroactively report the daily spot market for days their office is closed.

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