Organic pig production 2014 – without castration
Organic pork is a clear alternative to conventional pork because organic pig production, with outdoor access and roughage, is quite different. The low market share (1%) for organic pork provides a promising development potential. Consumer expectation for a natural product means that a stop for castration could provide new marketing possibilities.
A recent pilot study on production of entire males on commercial organic farms indicates that the proportion of organic produced entire male pigs with boar taint is so high that it is a major barrier for a marked orientated growth in organic pig production.
In this project we develop a management concept for future organic pig production without castration, with a documented low level of entire male pigs with a high level of skatol and androstenone in back fat and therefore a minimum risk for boar taint. The risk of boar taint can be reduced by feeding the right feeds in the right combination.
The best feed rations are selected based on their ability to minimize boar taint and tested for consequences for productivity, nutrient utilization and natural disease resistance. Subsequently the best feeding is combined with the best decisions concerning, pig weight when taken from pasture, group size and grouping strategy and slaughter weight and the concept is tested for the overall effect on skatole and androstenone level in male pig.
The consequences for economy and working conditions are demonstrated for farmers and citizens.
Bent Borg Jensen
Blichers Allé 20, Postboks 50
Tel: (+45) 87 15 80 67