Pork production: How do I get started in pig farming?

Plan carefully and put a business model together for pig farming.

Funding should be enough to set up the piggery and cover the running costs for at least a year. Profit is not immediate because of the investment costs. Even the best planned and implemented commercial projects experience a lag before they become profitable. That’s the nature of agri-business.

The most common commercial pig enterprises are farrow-to-finish (breeding and growing pigs, then selling them to the abattoir), fattening farms (buying and finishing weaners to sell to the abattoir), and weaner production farms. The feed spend is lower in the fattening and weaner enterprises.

If you are building the pig housing, invest more at the outset to save on repairs and rebuilding later. If there is piped water, drinking nipples for the pigs will cut down on waste. The feeders should accommodate all the pigs at once.

Buy quality pigs for the best returns and keep accurate records. You can’t manage unless you measure.

  • This article was written by Dr. Mary-Louise Penrith and first appeared in Farming SA.

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