Spain Ranked Second Largest Pig Producing Country in Europe

SPAIN - According to data gathered by BDporc, the Spanish reference swine database, there has been a continuous increase in the size of farms (from 719 sows in 2007 to 986 sows in 2012).
calendar icon 14 November 2013
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Spain has 26 million pigs, including piglets, fodder pigs, breeders, and boars. This makes Spain the second largest pig producer in the European Union and ranks fourth in the world. The country exports 1,369,527 tonnes of pork annually, which is 40 per cent of the total production.

Over the last two decades, Spain's pig producing sector has undergone a tremendous transformation. This information was made public in light of the 20th Anniversary of the Porc d´Or awards, an event organised by the Institute for Research and Technology in Food and Agriculture (IRTA), in collaboration with Zoetis as co-organiser.

José Luis Noguera, director of BDporc (IRTA), believes this increase derives from the search of a greater professionalisation of the sector, improvements in the organisation of production, increased efficiency and cost optimization.

In terms of productivity, the BDporc analysis reveals that over the last 20 years, an increase of almost seven weaned piglets per every producing sow per year has occurred.

During 2012, a mean productivity of 26.57 weaned piglets per sow per year was registered. As a result, Spain has been placed among the primary pig producing countries.

Over the last decade, the Spanish pig sector has gone from being an importer to a significant exporter. The sector contributes over 4,500 million Euros to the country's GDP, which is over 37 per cent of total livestock production and 14 per cent of total agrarian production.

Miguel Ángel Higuera, director of the National Pork Livestock Producers Association (ANPROGAPOR), said: "Over the last few years, foreign trade in the sector has increased remarkably, not only in volume but also in the quality of exported products, which is currently much more structured.

"To date, intra- and extra- community exports are not mere opportunities but have become a structural event that depends on the correct functioning of the domestic market."

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