Socially sustainable swine breeding
A socially sustainable pathway for the entire pork industry is not as far away as it is sometimes portrayed. Ethical concerns are already being addressed as part of our focus on sustainable swine breeding. Pre-weaning losses, sow retention, use of antibiotics and loose housing throughout life are just a few examples.
All animal behavior serves an evolutionary purpose. Over millions of years, animals developed certain protective behavior in order to survive and after domestication this still affects today’s reality in farming. In a farm setting, group behavior such as tail biting can cause damage and make management more difficult. As a breeding company, our role is to better understand the interactions between pigs, people, and their environment in order to make selections that will result in a more docile and resilient group of animals.
As new, innovative farm systems are being invented and tested, it is important to lead the way forward by examining how pigs behave in more open environments, such as loose housing for gestating and farrowing sows. In our nucleus farms, we have adopted free sow gestation housing systems to breed and select the right sow of the future. This way, we can make selections of animals that can thrive in the right system. Our role is to examine the following areas:
- Selecting for social animal behavior
- The impact of high-quality swine genetics
- Breeding for resilient, easy to manage traits
Balanced breeding has been our philosophy from the beginning. Find out the gains achieved and what is expected in the future. With Hypor animals, we show you what’s possible in your barn, now and in the future.