GFM Network News


Fresh meat for sale at a grocery market in the city of Zunyi, in China’s Guizhou province. The country's pig farming industry is undergoing a second crisis in a decade, this time caused by African swine fever.

Big pig: large farms in China link up with small ones

Reuters – China’s large pig farms are lining up with small, family-based farms in a state-initiated investment of nearly 50 billion yuan (US$7.14 billion) to boost hog production, hit hard by a deadly swine disease, the Agriculture Ministry said. Fifteen leading pig farms in Beijing signed 19 agreements Jan. 1 with local governments in 16

Fresh meat for sale at a grocery market in the city of Zunyi, in China’s Guizhou province. The country's pig farming industry is undergoing a second crisis in a decade, this time caused by African swine fever.

China acknowledges domestic pork shortage

Rising prices are now a top political concern for Beijing


News reports from Asia indicate the Chinese government is finally having to own up about that country’s pork shortages due to African swine fever (ASF) and trade disputes. The South China Morning Post has reported that Chinese Vice-Premier Hu Chunhua has been assigned to oversee the issue of rising pork prices that could mar October’s


Maple Leaf Foods says it is over half done its conversions to open sow housing.

Maple Leaf pulls ahead on open sow housing

Gestation crates will be a thing of the past at Maple Leaf Foods as of 2021, three years ahead of the National Farm Animal Care Council’s deadline

Maple Leaf Foods now expects to complete its shift to open sow housing with years to spare. The company is more than halfway completed its transition, according to Dr. Greg Douglas, vice-president of animal care. About 40,000 of the company’s 70,000 sows are currently managed under the advanced open-housing system, and the company expects to

A worker outside a seven-storey pig building of Guangxi Yangxiang’s farm at Yaji Mountain Forest Park in Guangxi province, China, March 21, 2018.

China’s multi-storey hog hotels elevate industrial farms to new levels

The structures are as high as 13 floors and save land costs but production experts worry about disease risk

On Yaji Mountain in southern China, they are checking in the sows 1,000 head per floor in high-rise “hog hotels.” Privately owned agricultural company Guangxi Yangxiang Co. Ltd. is running two seven-floor sow-breeding operations, and is putting up four more, including one with as many as 13 floors that will be the world’s tallest building

A worker checks sows on a large-scale pig farm owned by the Xinguangan company in Wuxuan county, 
Guangxi province, China, December 14, 2017.

GOING BIG: Chinese pork producers supersize

The country is the world’s top pork market, but until recently most of it has been raised on small operations

Surrounded by mountains in a remote part of southwestern China, Xinguangan’s first large-scale, modern pig farm is getting ready to produce its first offspring. By the end of the year, 10,000 sows will live inside two huge barns on this 73-hectare (180-acre) site, producing up to 280,000 piglets annually, or about 20,000 tonnes of pork.


Members of Hog Watch Manitoba hold a press conference in Winnipeg.

Hog production faces opposing ideologies

Hog Watch holds events opposing legislative changes, Manitoba Pork responds

Manitoba’s pork industry found itself treading on hostile ground at the University of Winnipeg on Sept. 21. Manitoba Pork Council chairman George Matheson stood up at a Hog Watch Manitoba event last week to refute some of the claims made by the activist group, including assertions that hog production is inhumane and poorly regulated. “Gestation

Pig pats promote productivity

The less fearful of humans a swine herd is, the higher its productivity will be

It turns out one bad human can spoil the bunch — at least when it comes to pigs. Speaking to producers and pork industry representatives at the annual swine seminar in Winnipeg earlier this month, Grahame Coleman told those gathered that pigs can’t always distinguish between people, particularly if they are dressed in similar garb

The floodgates appear set to open on new hog barn construction in Manitoba.

Pork industry expects hog barn surge

The end of a lengthy moratorium and new lending guidelines are driving a spike in inquiries about building new barns

A rash of hog barn construction is about to break out in Manitoba. Two formal applications for new hog barns have gone through in the last two weeks and the Manitoba Pork Council is getting a growing number of phone inquiries from producers. Mike Teillet, MPC’s sustainable development manager, said some inquiries are just tire kicking. But genuine interest


A barn in Holland in which piglets are given burlap sacks to play with.

Hog enrichment comes in many forms

Not just toys for pigs, enrichment makes swine smarter and easier to transport

The time for thinking about enrichment as “toys for pigs” has long passed. Speaking to producers and members of the pork industry at the Manitoba Swine Seminar in Winnipeg, Jennifer Brown said not only is enrichment mandatory under the current code of practice, it actually provides benefits to both animals and those who handle them.

“We know we need to have more finisher barns in the province, we need to bring more balance between our production capacity, and our processing capacity.” – Andrew Dickson.

Pork sector builds on hope

Four new barns will be built in 2016

After years of dealing with new diseases, hog barn restrictions and country-of-origin labelling, pork producers at the annual Manitoba Swine Seminar were told things are looking up for the industry. “There is a lot of good news,” said Andrew Dickson, general manager of the Manitoba Pork Council, during his state-of-the-industry address. He cited the U.S.