Interested in pig farming? exciting pointers you need on your fingertips
Most of the pig meat can be used as fresh meat for re-sale.
A whole suckling pig can be used and are usually sold between the ages of two
to six weeks. Pork is the most common ingredient in many kinds of
sausages. Ham and bacon are made from fresh pork which has been salted and/or
shoulder and ham. Bacon is taken from the sides of the pig.
- Pig skin: Pig skin can be used for safety gloves, collagen in energy
bars and plastic surgery, low-fat butter, chewing gum, x-ray films, drug
capsules, bread (the flour improver is made from their hair). The skin can
also be used for practising of tattoo art as well as used to simulate
human flesh when testing bullets.
organs: The pig’s internal organs are used for pet food,
tambourine skin (bladder), heart valves (surgery), surgical anticoagulant
(stomach mucus) as well as insulin (pancreas).
- Pig Bones: Can be used for: Refining cadmium, bone china, inexpensive
wine corks, stabilising the propellant in bullet making, inkjet paper,
fabric softener, concrete, match heads, train brakes, yogurt, beer, wine
and don’t forget ice-cream.
- Pig fat: The fat from pigs bodies are used for biodiesel, soap,
shampoos and crayons
- Pig blood: Can be used for: cigarette filters, colourants in some
types of ham, aluminium ingot moulds, fish foods as well as toothpaste.
- Bristles and ears: Some paint brushes are made from pig bristles and pig
ears are used for chemical weapons testing.
high standard of management and hygiene are a good investment. The boar you’re
buying should come with complete records. From these you will be able to see
the boars’ performance as well as his parents’ performances.
knowledge in this field with when buying pigs for the first time. There are
also regulations for moving pigs that you’ll need to comply with.
that might die or doesn’t perform well. Examine the pig carefully to ensure
you’re purchasing a good quality animal.
- How old is the pig?
- Has it ever been sick?
- Has it received vaccinations? If yes, for which diseases?
- Has it received treatment for parasites?
- If it’s an adult pig, has it ever bred?
- Why is the seller selling the pig?
- Does the pig look comfortable and relaxed?
- Is it breathing regularly? It should not be wheezing or gasping. If the belly of
the pig contracts when it breathes this means it is battling to breath.
Only the chest should be rising and falling.
- Observe the pigs’ reactions. When you clap your hands, shout or whistle loudly a
healthy pig should react by looking at you.
- Is it too fat or too thin? If you can see the hips, shoulders, ribs or backbone
under the skin, the pig is too thin. If it has rolls of fat around
its neck it’s too fat.
- If the pig is too fat this can cause it to develop leg and foot problems as well
as the possibility of not breeding well.
- Is the back straight?
- Is the coat glossy?
- Does the pigs’ skin look healthy and clean?
- Does the pig have any swellings on the head, body or limbs?
- Are their legs strong and straight?
- Does the pig walk normally?
– This you can see if the animal rubs against objects for prolonged
periods of time.
– This can be seen by soft or watery dung
– This you can see if there are small, dry and hard droppings.
us three basic steps to consider when purchasing pigs:
- What breed will best suit your farm
- Don’t buy other people’s problems
- Plan a breeding program which will match your resources.
White: This is a particularly large animal. It is lean and
active. It can adapt to most climates. This type of pig has a long,
productive life in the breeding pen. It produces good quality bacon and
pork. It also has the ability to cross with and improve other pig breeds
which has made it quite popular.
Landrace: An indigenous and locally produced breed. This means it
can survive on both marginal and high potential grazing also that it is
disease and heat tolerant. It is popular among non-commercial producers
who slaughter mainly for domestic consumption.
- Duroc: Originated
form the eastern U.S, one of the recognising characteristic is its drooping
ears. Because it has a high ratio of marbling fat to carcass fat, its meat
is juicy and tender.
- Kolbroek: Is
an indigenous breed that’s smaller than most modern pig breeds. This type
of breed has sturdier legs, stronger feet and is extremely hardy. The
Kolbroek is known as a good forager and efficient converter of
have different healthy weight requirements as well as different age groups of
productivity. Their health and the success of the breeding program will have a
lot to do you. How well you’ve planned along with how well you’ve keep records
of previous partnerships and pervious serving dates.
He will require a maximum of 3kg of feed to gain 1kg in weight. Buy boars at
least four weeks before putting them to the sow for the first time. This will
allow you to keep them quarantined and will give the boar a chance to adapt to
his new environment and become comfortable.
themselves or the sow the first time they serve. The boar should be at least
eight months old and the same size as the sow. A smaller sow and not a gilt (a
young female) should be used for “training”.
his own pen. By removing any obstructions from the pen and ensuring that the
floor is not slippery, you can save both your boar and sow from potential
boars. The younger boar will be to serve the gilts that come on heat for the
first time and a mature boar to serve the older, heavier sows. If at all
possible it is advisable to have a spare boar available.
as how many sows have been served can be very beneficial. By doing this you can
cull boars that are infertile or produce small litters. On average boars have a
working life of a maximum 18 to 24 months old. This means they ought to be
replaced when they are 30 to 36 months old.
as well as even-sized claws. They should have a well-formed vulva and six
well-shaped, noticeable teats on either side of their belly. The teats should
start well forward and be evenly spaced to allow for piglets to have adequate
going. If you need to you can always buy extra animals, when doing this try to
buy from the same farm your boars came from so that the owner can give you some
advice on your breeding programme.
breeding. Pigs that are not chosen can be sold as baconers at a live weight of
120kg and 130 kg, which should be between seven and eight months. Then they are
ready to be served by the boar for the first time. In order to produce large
litters (8 – 10 or more healthy piglets) the gilts have to be in good
coming on heat
by feeding them more. The sows’ udders need to return to normal after weaning
before sending her to the abattoir. You can then bring in a replacement gilt.
litters and are problem and disease free, they should be allowed to rear six to
more litters before culling.
and produce good quality pork. This will increase your profits. The various
groups of pigs should be fed differently and in different quantities. These
and pregnant sows
three to ten weeks old
weighing 60kg to 90 kg, who are up to slaughter.
should be at the right quantities for each group to ensure proper health. Feed
mixture can be bought or mixed on your farm. It is cost-effective to mix the
feed yourself but please consult an expert before attempting this yourself.
Consult an expert in pig nutrition before altering the feed or the quantities
used in a mix.
feed and water should be kept as far apart as possible in order to keep the
amount of profit you make. To ensure they produce the maximum number of piglets
and that the piglets are marketed as soon as possible you will need:
which allows your pigs to be reared efficiently and comfortably.
Preferably well-maintained clean housing
disease control as much as possible by making sure conditions on your farm
are clean and precautionary measures are in place.
which are highly productive breeding animals, grow well and use their feed
efficiently are more likely to produce carcasses with low fat and can
produce 20 or more piglets yearly.
room where the feed can be mixed and stored. Equipment can also be stored
for the farmer and workers, if this is needed.
facilities which includes: pumps, pipes, taps, drinking nipples, reservoirs
and boreholes if this is needed.
for transportation of pigs and feed
to twenty pregnant gilts between ten and twelve months
to three boars between eight and twelve months.
after you’ve bought your first pigs. You should have enough savings to cover
all your costs until you can start selling your pigs.
as low as possible is imperative to survival. You will need to:
your feed mixtures should be well-balanced for the different groups
not to waste any feed
your own feed is cheaper
cost-effective ingredients for the feed.
and maintenance of fences, buildings and vehicles