New Report Estimates Cost of Future Regulations

NETHERLANDS - New regulations on animal welfare and ammonia emissions due to come into effect in 2013 will cost €240 per fattening pig place and €500 per sow, according to a new report from the Agricultural Economics group of Wageningen University Research.
calendar icon 6 April 2010
clock icon 3 minute read

W.H.M. Baltussen of the Wageningen UR Livestock Research in the Netherlands and co-authors have published a report of their research to investigate the additional costs to the nation's pig farmers of complying with the latest regulations relating to welfare and the environment.

In recent years, Dutch pig farming has had to prepare to comply with various government measures related to the environment and animal welfare for which the transition period ends in 2013. However, the starting positions of farms with pigs vary enormously. The transition periods end on 1 January 2013 for all farms.

This study aims to chart the economic impact of these government measures on pig farming.

According to the report, the demands with respect to ammonia control result in an average investment sum of around €60 per fattening pig. The requirements to expand the living area in the case of new buildings result in an average investment sum of –120 per fattening pig. The adjustment of the slat width results in an average investment sum of €60 per fattening pig. In total, the sum required for investment is €240 per fattening pig.

For comparison, Baltussen and co-authors calculated that the annual repayment capacity on the farms is €20 to 25 per fattening pig per year and that the maximum financing scope per fattening pig is around €400.

For breeding farms, the average investment in ammonia-reduction measures is €100 to 200 per sow. The average investment in welfare (group housing and area requirements for the piglets) would amount to €300 to 400 per sow. In total, the requirements cost around €500 per sow.


Baltussen W.H.M., R. Hoste, H.B. van der Veen, S. Bokma, P. Bens and H. Zeewuster. 2010. (Economic impact of existing regulations on Dutch farms with pigs). Wageningen UR LEI Report 2010-010. ISBN/EAN: 978-90-8615-404-3 [in Dutch with English summary]

Further Reading

- You can view a full summary of the report by clicking here.
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