Sow numbers in the European Union (EU) are down slightly from 13 million sows, 2010 vs. 2011. “A number of big countries have seen limited change, while in a number of eastern and central European countries the change is massive,” points out Peter Kristensen, DVM, former general manager of animal health for Boehringer Ingelheim in the Ukraine, Belorussia and Kazakhstan....More
Done poorly, the loss of sow performance and the increase in sow mortality will explode.” That is the learned observation of Peter Kristensen, DVM, a native of Denmark, who most recently served as general manager of animal health for Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. in the Ukraine, Belorussia and Kazakhstan....More
During the past 10 years, Pork Checkoff has invested more than $1.3 million to fund 20 research projects related to sow gestation housing. The projects focus on key factors to optimize a particular type of housing system....More
At a World Pork Expo news conference last month in Des Moines, IA, National Pork Board CEO Chris Novak made it clear that the rush to prohibit pork suppliers from housing sows in gestation stalls is a judgment made in haste and without any basis in science....More
Some pork producers have moved to open pens for sows, but the overwhelming majority continue to use gestation stalls, according to a University of Missouri study released at World Pork Expo. Dr. Ron Plain discusses the results and some inplications of the study in this interview following a press conference at the Expo in Des Moines, Iowa....More
It is very disconcerting that retailers, in making decisions about sourcing pork products, continue to
succumb to the pressure of activist groups such as the Humane Society of the United States without any
consideration of the impact on American farm families, who produce the safe and affordable pork that
they sell to consumers....More
The president of the National Pork Board said Thursday he is disappointed in the announcement earlier in the day by McDonald’s Corp. that sets a ten-year timeline for sourcing all of its pork from farms that do not use individual stalls to house pregnant pigs....More
McDonald’s USA has set a goal to obtain all pork for its U.S. business from producers that do not use gestation stalls by the end of 2022, according to an announcement released yesterday. As an interim step, by 2017 McDonald’s will seek to source pork for its U.S. business only from producers who share its commitment to phase out gestation stalls....More
An article in this week’s Washington Post takes a look at the gestation stall conversation. The article quotes Temple Grandin and Dave Warner, National Pork Producers Council Director of Communications, among experts offering opinions on the issue....More
As the U.S. pork industry faces mounting pressure to abandon gestation stalls, we decided to take a closer look at how sows perform in three common housing alternatives — stalls, pens and pens with electronic sow feeding (ESF)....More
I don’t know about your house, but the Meyer household will be eating Domino’s pizza for the foreseeable future -- if not for the pizza (which is pretty good), then to reward the courage shown by Domino’s shareholders in rejecting a “request to study ending the use of pork from suppliers who confine pregnant pigs in crates.” The shareholders’ decision wasn’t a questionable one as 80% voted against the “request” and only 4% supported it. Sixteen percent of votes abstained. The company’s board of directors had also recommended that the request be rejected, saying that the issue should be settled between the company and producers and processors....More
Safeway, Inc., the second-largest grocery chain, has announced today it will begin formulating plans to have pork suppliers provide product from gestation stall-free housing.
For several years, the Pleasanton, CA, firm says it has substantially increased the quantity of pork it buys from producers who have made commitments to decrease the use of gestation stall housing in their breeding barns....More
With around 240 days to go until the Jan. 1, 2013 partial ban on sow stalls (gestation) in the European Union (EU), pork producers there face the daunting prospect of a major blow to their livelihood.
Burger King Corp. announced Wednesday that it will begin purchasing pork only from suppliers with documented plans to end their use of gestation stalls for breeding pigs. Burger King states that it will “use its purchasing power to ensure the appropriate and proper treatment of animals.”...More
The movement by U.S. food corporations toward more humane treatment of animals experienced a whopper of a shift Wednesday when Burger King announced that all of its eggs and pork will come from cage-free chickens and stall-free pigs by 2017, according to a report in today’s Minneapolis StarTribune.
The decision by the U.S.'s second-largest fast-food restaurant raises the bar for other companies seeking to appeal to the rising consumer demand for more humanely produced fare....More
Steve Meyer, a regular contributor to National Hog Farmer, provides details in the CME Group Daily Livestock Report about the recent McDonald's decision to ask suppliers to phase out use of gestation stalls....More