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BBC discusses ASF and feral pigs in the Forest of Dean

22nd Feb 2019 / By Alistair Driver

BBC Points West highlighted the threat posed to the UK's commercial pig population by the Forest of Dean's feral pig population in a feature yesterday. 

Sophie Hope BBC

The programme explained why farmers are currently nervous about the potential for the FoD's feral pigs to infect the commercial pig herd with of African swine fever (ASF). The presenter noted that the forests feral pig population grew by 400 to 1,600 last year, four times the number deemed sustainable. 

Gloucestershire pig producer and NPA Producer Group member Sophie Hope explained how damaging it would be to her business and the wider industry if the feral pigs infected local farms. "It would mean a complete cull of the pigs here, there would be movement restrictions in and around the area and the countryside would be shut down - it would decimate the business," she said. 

AHDB's Phil Bicknell was also interviewed delivering the key kessage to the public about not feeding the FoD's feral pigs and ensuring that bins are secure so they cannot access them. 

You can view the feature here from 5 minutes 50 seconds (note, the programme will only he available for a very short time):

You can view the NPA's briefing on the feral boar here