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Stackyard News May 06

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    Arable Farming? Just Add Pigs!

Diversify, add value, trim costs, are the latest industry buzz words but how many of them will actually fit in and enhance an arable farming business. There are always barriers to overcome including capital, experience, and treading into unknown territory.

outdoor pigs

One option is to finish pigs on contract which generates useful income, helps keep labour occupied, provides a ready market for straw and produces manure providing a cushion to high fertiliser prices.

And to help arable farmers take the plunge, the British Pig Executive (BPEX) has produced an A to Z guide for successful pig finishing.

This covers the planning, building and management of new buildings - this is of equal value to those wishing to modify existing accommodation.

BPEX Director of Pig industry Development Mark Wilson said: "The British pig industry has changed dramatically over the last few years.

"A number of established producers are now specialising in the breeding and production of pigs but are sending their finishing pigs to clean sites in batches. This allows them to maximise performance through improved health and allows them to concentrate on producing a good quality product."

A site taking batches of 1000 pigs can expect to generate some £25,000pa before costs.

Additionally there is the manure with a fertiliser replacement value of possibly another £3,000 next year.

The pigs are still owned by the breeder, who also supplies feed, veterinary and technical support, a significant capital commitment. Often existing under-utilised buildings can be adapted for 200+ pigs, risk and exposure is limited.

Mark said: "The pig industry has realised that the key to its long-term success lies in working with its customer, attracting new blood and investment in new buildings."

A seminar is being held at the Cereals Event at 10am on June 14 and 15 in the NFU area. Contact Barney Kay, National Pig Association, on 02476 858780 or Mark Wilson, British Pig Executive, on 01908 844256 for further details.

link Pig Yearbook Sees Encouraging View Of Pig Industry
link Irish Pig Producers To Benefit From New Recording Agreement
link AI - BPEX Helps To Get It Right
link Scanner Takes New Product Award At Pig And Poultry Fair

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