THE gauntlet has been thrown down to the British pig industry
to make real improvements in productivity and in turn improve
cost pf production.
The challenge was made at a workshop on improving reproductive
performance in pigs organised by the British Pig Executive
BPEX Director of Pig Industry Development Mark Wilson
called on the industry to achieve an extra pig born alive
per litter and an extra two sold per sow per year.
Mark was one of the speakers at workshop called Setting
a New Standard which aimed to improve reproductive performance
by training the trainers attended by a wide cross-section
from the industry including. Vets, breeding companies,
advisors and larger producers.
Mark said: "There are already many producers who
are doing better than the national average but that is
not to say they can't do exceptionally well.
"Our average born alive is just 10.7 when our major
competitors in Europe are at least 1.5 pigs per litter
better than that.
"It is not impossible to achieve significant improvement.
Just four years ago the French were sixth in the European
league table and now they are at the top. If they can do
it so can we."
Speakers from all over Europe attended the workshop, held
at the Radisson Hotel at Stansted Airport on Thursday (26)
and gave a comprehensive view of factors affecting breeding
herd performance from AI stud, boar contact and light levels
to timing of insemination and the layout of an outdoor
At the event, BPEX Chief Executive Mick Sloyan launched
the AI programme which has been developed in close consultation
with breeding companies using the expertise of International
Pig Genetics, a world leader in pig breeding.
The programme involves on-farm improvement, a reference
lab, setting and auditing standards and recording to provide
The reference lab and stud audit will provide a single
independent source for testing semen quality and monitoring
stud procedures all of which should lead to improvements
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