The project will support development of a trustworthy, resource efficient and competitive organic pig production in Denmark. The objective is to investigate, develop and demonstrate an alternative to the current practice.
Today the climate and environmental impact of organic systems does not differ much from conventional, in fact the outdoor sow production imposes a significant risk to nitrate leaching. Further, hygiene and ammonia emissions are often difficult to control satisfactorily in the present stables with a connected concrete outdoor area, and diarrhea is a common problem when piglets are transferred from the range to the stables. Alternatively the sow production could take place in an agroforestry system expected to reduce nitrate leaching. The weaning could be postponed while maintaining the overall pig production per sow through introduction of lactation oestrus resulting in more robust piglets. Finishing could take place in new types of stables with significant lower ammonia emission while maintaining the health and welfare of the slaughter pigs. This cross-disciplinary project will document such possible benefits and develop management procedures to allow a profitable production based on these ideas. The expected effect is that the organic pig production can be expanded because of a better compliance with consumer expectations to the production and with societal expectations regarding the contribution of organic production to reduce environmental impact. This will increase the value of the primary pig production.
January 2014/ ICROFS/ Denmark.