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Weekly Overview: British Pig Genetics in Demand in India

20 June 2016

ANALYSIS - A high-level delegation from the Punjab government has paid a visit to the UK to assess British pig production and genetics as the Indian state intends to develop its burgeoning pig sector.

AHDB Pork senior export manager Jonathan Eckley said: “They are seeking our pig genetics and management systems as they want to improve productivity, welfare and product quality. Punjab has been taking the lead in the modernisation of Indian agriculture and already produces 76,000 tonnes of pork on a yearly basis.

In other news, a debate on welfare and economics in livestock production, at the Animal Welfare Foundation Discussion Forum in London, UK, warned that moves for a total ban on the use of antibiotics in livestock production need to be reined back as vets need to be allowed to use all means available to ensure animal health and welfare.

Speaking at the forum, pig veterinary consultant, Mark White said that it was the duty of the vet to ensure the health and welfare of animals and to do this it is necessary to have all techniques available.

He warned that while the profession recognised the need to reduce the use of antibiotics, the call to stop using them altogether for treating livestock was unwise.

The pig sector in the UK, he said, has already reduced the use of antibiotics by 40 per cent since 2014 but before their use is ended completely, other techniques have to be established to ensure the welfare of the animals.

Also speaking at the forum, David Main, professor of animal welfare at Bristol University, explained that improving welfare in livestock production depends on the system and changes in management.

Lucy Towers

Lucy Towers
News Team - Editor

After graduating from The University of Sheffield, Lucy joined 5M in 2011 as part of the News Desk team. In 2012, she was promoted to editor of TheFishSite. With previous farming experience and a love for the great outdoors, Lucy has a passion for wildlife and the environment.

Top image via Shutterstock

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