Chinese people were the first people to start raising pigs for meat over 2,000 years ago. Up to the 1950s, most farms had a couple of pigs that were kept outside. Thanks to technology and growth in farms, pig farming has greatly expanded since the 1950s. Farmers are able to care for their pigs indoors, which allows them to check the herd health, care for piglets, feed individual animals based on their diet, and control breeding. Today, the average herd is about 500 pigs.
Prior to the 1950s, most farmers only had enough pigs to feed their own family.
Today, the average herd is about 500 pigs.
Farmers work hard to keep their pigs happy. Happy and healthy pigs mean that their business will do well. Pig farmers follow guidelines that provide them with information to make sure their farm is safe and clean for their animals. Saskatchewan has been a leader for good animal care and improvements to the standard. Pigs are given vaccines to prevent the animals from becoming sick. These vaccines are tested and approved by our government, just like human vaccines.
Pig farmers work hard to keep their pigs happy.
Radio Frequency Identification Tags (RFID tags) are a type of tracking system that use radio waves to give information about the pigs to the famers.
Each pig wears a tag in the ear. This tag helps the farmer know when each pig is eating, and it can also track data related to that specific pig, including tracking their growth and history. If the RFID tag says the pig is not eating, the farmer will know that the pig might be sick.
Modern pig barns have a lot of technology to ensure pigs are kept happy and healthy.
A pig barn uses technology that has automatic feeding and watering systems. The pigs always have access to water. Other technology that can be set up in pig barns monitors the pigs’ activity and behaviour, looking for changes in eating and drinking patterns. Another technology used is a pig cough monitor, which can detect respiratory problems in pigs up to two weeks before farmers or vets can spot these issues. They also have 3-D imaging cameras that estimate a pig’s weight.
These piglets are drinking from an automatic watering system.
Similar technology is available that listens for piglets that may be getting crushed under the mother. When the microphone hears uniquely loud sounds coming from piglets, it sends a signal for a patch that is worn by the sow to start vibrating so she stands up.
This pen helps the sow nurse her piglets with less chance of rolling over on them.
Pork gives our bodies protein, fat, energy, and other vitamins and minerals our bodies need.
Our bodies get nutrients from pork meat products.