Dr Danie Visser, an agricultural adviser and strategic analyst, spoke to Glenneis Kriel in regards to the elements {that a} farmer ought to take into account when selecting which pig breed to farm.

Selecting the right pig breed for your farm
The Kolbroek is a extremely resilient and adaptable pig breed indigenous to South Africa.
Picture: Glenneis Kriel

Should you intend to farm pigs, it makes monetary sense to purchase the most effective genetic materials you possibly can afford proper from the beginning.

“Though this could be costlier initially, using superior genetics to type the muse of a herd will produce big dividends in the long term,” says Dr Danie Visser, agricultural adviser and strategic analyst at Juventis Consulting.

Farmers who’re already within the sport ought to analyse the strengths and weaknesses of their herds and search for genetics to go with or strengthen them.

Whether or not new or established, nevertheless, a producer ought to at all times supply this genetic materials from a good breeding firm, stud breeder or multiplier herd.

Visser advises farmers to think about the breeding aims of the provider, the scale of its gene pool, and the provision of the breed nationally and internationally when selecting genetics.

“The breeder ought to be registered with the Pig Breeders’ Society of South Africa and have thorough information of the genetic efficiency of the precise strains supplied. Additionally take into account aftersales care, as many firms nowadays provide farmers with crossbreeding alternative gilts and genetic agreements to assist them take advantage of their genetic strains,” explains Visser.

Farmers also needs to familiarise themselves with the illness standing and biosecurity measures of the breeder or firm promoting the animals, and talk about the easiest way to convey new genetic materials onto the farm, and the quarantine measures, with their veterinarian.
“Nice care ought to be taken to make sure that the genetic materials is disease-free, as contagious illnesses will unfold like wildfire, particularly beneath intensive manufacturing situations,” says Visser.

Finest industrial breeds
The South African Landrace, Giant White and Duroc are the most well-liked industrial pig breeds in South Africa. The Landrace and Giant White are famend for his or her excellent mothering traits, whereas the Duroc is best recognized for its wonderful development and meat high quality.

Most industrial farmers use era one crosses (F1) to take advantage of the distinctive attributes of every breed. Visser explains that F1 sows type the muse of the industrial pig business and are the spine of the pig manufacturing chain in South Africa.

“F1 sows are bred from pure breeds. Their genetic composition being extremely depending on the development of the purebred mom strains, usually the Landrace or Giant White. Heterosis [hybrid vigour] is manifested in traits with low heredity, resembling ovulation fee, variety of piglets born alive, milk manufacturing, survival fee and conception fee.”

Farmers might produce their very own F1 sows from purebred animals or an in-house semen settlement contract, however this requires extra area and way more talent and administration than shopping for them in from a 3rd celebration. The vast majority of farmers due to this fact have a tendency to switch their sows at a fee of 30% to 40% per 12 months.

A terminal sire line is then used on the F1 sows to additional exploit heterosis, with many of the terminal sire strains utilized in South Africa coming from PIC’s 337 and 410 strains, Topigs Norsvin’s Tempo line or the Duroc breed, in response to Visser.

The thought behind using a terminal sire on F1 sows is to strengthen the dam line
traits of the white breeds – resembling fertility, mothering means, milk manufacturing and
fast conception after weaning – with the traits of the sire line, resembling improved feed conversion, meat high quality and dressing proportion.

The pure breeds and F1 sows are extremely adaptable, however carry out greatest when produced in climate-controlled housing particularly designed to ease administration and get probably the most out of sows, weaner pigs and growers.

“Pigs might be produced nearly anyplace nowadays, due to using housing and local weather management, however manufacturing may not make financial sense in areas with excessive humidity and warmth, such because the Kalahari, Karoo and areas across the equator, due to the excessive price of local weather management and likewise the truth that most of those areas are removed from feed sources, which drives up feed prices,” says Visser.

If the pigs are saved outdoor, their development charges, copy and the variety of piglets weaned will probably be negatively affected by climatic and different environmental elements.

“Intensive manufacturing programs are harder to handle, leading to losses attributable to warmth stress and sunburn, sows that lie on their piglets, inventory theft, summer time infertility, larger feed necessities and so forth.”

Indigenous breed
Farmers wanting so as to add worth to smallholdings or use a free-range strategy can take into account
using the Kolbroek, South Africa’s solely registered indigenous pig breed.

“The Kolbroek is the oldest pig breed in South Africa and was, along with the Giant Black, one of many front-runners of contemporary pig manufacturing in South Africa. The breed performed a serious function in meals safety for a lot of households over many a long time, with nearly each farm in South Africa having a few Kolbroek pigs between the Twenties and Fifties,” says Visser.

What makes the breed distinctive is its excessive resilience and adaptableness to a variety of weather conditions, from Moorreesburg to Sutherland, and Bloemfontein to Musina and Hoedspruit. For that reason, they are often raised outdoor with nice success, though shelter ought to be offered to guard them in opposition to excessive warmth and chilly.

The Kolbroek is an efficient grazer, with sows sustaining good situation all through manufacturing, besides throughout lactation, when extra feed is required.

“They are often saved on kikuyu, lucerne, clover or grain lands, and love curd, fruit, pumpkin and greens. In actual fact, they make nice cleaners across the farm,” says Visser.

By way of copy, the Kolbroek doesn’t examine properly with the Giant White and Landrace which, over a few years, have been particularly chosen, fed and managed for top fertility. Whereas these breeds produce litters with a median of 13,5 to fifteen,5 piglets per 12 months, a Kolbroek sow’s common litter measurement is seven to 11 piglets, in response to Visser.

The breed has good mothering qualities, nonetheless, with only a few piglets being misplaced earlier than weaning, which is only one motive why it’s preferrred for free-range manufacturing.
The Kolbroek additionally doesn’t boast the sturdy development traits of different breeds.

“Its major perform till now was to supply a small-framed, resilient sow requiring low upkeep, with good mothering traits and adaptableness. Progress fee might be improved by means of crossbreeding, leading to piglets which are prepared for the market between 100 and 110 days of age,” explains Visser.

Many Kolbroek breeders declare that the standard of the meat is outstanding, and preferrred for area of interest pork merchandise, braai sausages, and dried sausages combined with sport. Genetically, nevertheless, the breed tends to placed on an excessive amount of fats. To resolve this drawback, it may be crossed with different white breeds, notably the Duroc, which is understood for its marbling.

Visser says the Kolbroek is most suited to the natural and speciality pork market, the place farmers desire so as to add worth to the top product themselves.

“It’s a distinct segment product that slots in with the worldwide Gradual Meals programme. The Kolbroek additionally makes a terrific pet. There may be good demand for its genetics due to its small gene pool, which must be expanded and guarded for future generations.”

E-mail Dr Danie Visser at [email protected], or order his ebook Die Kolbroek: ’n kaleidoskoop van moontlikhede. The ebook is obtainable solely in Afrikaans.


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