Breeding Program

Crossbreeding program

To achieve the most efficient pig production as possible Nordic Genetics advocates the use of a three-way cross with Hampshire as the sire line. The parent female is a cross between Yorkshire and Landrace, and the terminal sire is a purebred Hampshire. By using a three-breed cross, heterosis is capitalized both for the mother and for the offspring. Heterosis provides higher litter sizes, stronger and healthier pigs, improved growth and better feed conversion. 

The crossing program has proven very successful for the fresh meat to the consumer. Scan sells the meat under the brand name Piggham. Piggham has been awarded a diploma for the "juicy and tasty meat" of the Gastronomic Academy.

 

Sustainable breeding program

Nordic Genetics believe that a broad breeding goal is essential to be able to breed for a sustainable pig production. Our breeding goal include several important traits for animal health and reproduction, quality of the meat, impact on environment and economic sustainability. Selection of breeding animals is based on total merit index where the traits included in the genetic evaluation are weighted according to appropriate economic values for each trait. By having a broad breeding goal with different types of traits the risk of inbreeding is less because animals of different genotypes get high total merit index. Our goal is to gain high genetic progress but not at the expense of the animal welfare, for example conformation of the breeding animals is of highest importance. Animal welfare and longevity also increase the public acceptance of the breeding activity.

Animal welfare and health

Pig production in Sweden is based on high animal welfare standards. Loose housing systems are used since more than two decades. Most commonly, gestating sows are group-housed in large pens with deep straw bedding. When about to farrowing the sows are moved to farrowing pens. Weaning is not allowed until the piglets are at least 28 days. Tail docking is not allowed. The pigs are held in larger areas than EU legislation and all pigs are given restricted amounts of straw or other rooting material each day. Fattening pigs are held on a partly slatted floor, fully slatted floor is forbidden. Antibiotics in feed is forbidden since 1986 and use of hormones as growth promoters is not allowed. Thanks to batch-wise production (all-in-all-out) a high health status can remain.

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