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German Pig Herds Are Plunging as Farmers Face Rising Costs

Feed and fuel prices are surging for livestock farmers. 

Pigs trot into a truck before delivery to a slaughterhouse, at a livestock farm in Ohrenbach, Germany. 

Pigs trot into a truck before delivery to a slaughterhouse, at a livestock farm in Ohrenbach, Germany. 

Photographer: Alex Kraus/Bloomberg

In a country renowned for its sausages, the pig herd has plummeted to its smallest level in decades. 

Germany’s hog herd fell to 22.3 million animals as of May 3, data from the federal statistics office showed Monday. That’s the lowest since at least 1990, when the country reunified, and nearly 10% smaller than a year earlier.