Jason Lusk, the head of the agricultural economics department at Purdue University, estimates that there is currently a 40 percent reduction in meat processing capacity, which will lead to 200,000 pigs per day being left on their farms.

“That’s a million extra pigs that would have gone to market, but instead are staying on the farm, from just one week,” Lusk said.

Hogs ready for slaughter cannot be easily held on farms because of their fast rate of growth. Pigs that are held much longer than six months after birth grow too large for processing, and meat processing plants typically won’t accept hogs larger than 300 pounds.