The Virginia Pork Industry

The Virginia pork industry adds significant value to the agricultural economy and is a major contributor to the overall Virginia economy. Although the size and structure of the Virginia pork industry has changed over time, current levels of production continue to support jobs and generate earnings in the state economy. In 2023, the sales generated from hog marketings and pork processing supported a total economic contribution of over $245.37 million in personal income, over $367.07 million in value added, and more than 4,473 jobs in the Virginia economy.

Total Economic Contribution

All direct, indirect, and induced economic activity supported by the Virginia Pork Industry.


jobs supported by the pork industry


value added (GDP)


personal income generated

Hog Farms and Production

Virginia Hog Inventory and Share of U.S. Hogs

There are about 245,000 hogs in Virginia. The size of the Virginia hog herd has varied over time but has trended downward from 425K head in 2000 to 245K head in 2023. As of December 2023, Virginia farms accounted for 0.3% of the total U.S. hog inventory.

The number of Virginia hog farms has decreased in recent years. From 1997 to 2012, the number of farms raising hogs decreased from 1,533 to 1,265, and by 2022 farm numbers decreased to 1,246.

Virginia Farms with Hogs and Hogs per Farm
Percent of Inventory by Size of Virginia Hog Farm, 2022

Approximately 74% of Virginia hogs are on farms with 5,000 or more in inventory. 19 percent of Virginia’s hogs are on farms with 2,000 to 4,999 head, and eight percent are on farms with less than 2,000 head.

Hog Production Costs and Returns

In 2023, hog sales (including market hogs, sows, and feeder pigs) totaled $1.56 billion. In addition to these farm-level effects, the pork industry supports other industries by purchasing inputs, supplies, and services. Based on long-run prices and aggregated production budgets for the Virginia pork industry, producing about 395,145 market hogs in Virginia generates over $61.44 million in feed, labor, equipment, and other production-related expenditures.

Hog Production by the Numbers


number of farms with hogs


hogs marketed annually


cash receipts from hog sales

Estimated Share of Hog Production Costs in Virginia

Feed is the largest single expenditure category in pork production. With over 395K market hogs produced annually, feed costs for the Virginia industry exceed $33.33M. Other direct expenses, like energy and transportation, add over $14.46M, employee compensation totals over $5.73M, and facility-related expenses add over $7.91M.

Jobs Supported by the Virginia Pork Industry

The direct, indirect, and induced activity generated by the Virginia pork industry in 2023 supported a total of 4,473 jobs and over $245.37 million in personal income. Virginia hog farms and pork processors directly employed 2,651 workers and paid over $122.89 million in total wages. This includes 84 full-time-equivalent workers at the farm level and an estimated 2,552 employees in the hog slaughter and processing sectors.


The purchases of input supplies and services in the pork industry indirectly supported 1,037 jobs and over $78.03 million in personal earnings for Virginia workers. Beyond this, the induced impacts stemming from employee spending included 784 additional jobs and over $44.45 million in personal income earned. Many of these jobs were within the agriculture and manufacturing industries, as well as industries like trucking, finance, insurance, real estate, trade, and other service sectors.