Forum update - free farrowing debate continues
14th Oct 2016 / By Alistair Driver
"I am a strong believer in freedom farrowing and having operated 72 freedom pens every five weeks for the past 5 years feel I know quite a lot about it too...
...however, the sad reality is there is no market for this product and we are not in a position to redesign and build more without a long term customer."
The free farrowing debate is continuing on the NPA forum.
It was started by After Stephen Hall who suggested free farrowing 'misses the point of efficient and welfare effective production of pig meat' in response to an article by AHDB chair Meryl Ward in this month's Pig World.
Meryl had her say, arguing confinement of the sow before and during farrowing is a welfare issue as it prevents the sow's in-built need for ‘nest building’ behaviour, while emerging science suggests that allowing the sow to nest build also has production benefits.
Farmers with polar opposite views of their own experience of free farrowing have now posted their thoughts.
The debate shows no sign of abating.