SwineCast Industry

Pork Production: What Actually Is Involved?

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Smithfield Foods recently published several videos aimed at helping consumers understand what actually occurs in pork production. These short videos focus on pork production, finishing, feeding, animal care, and the environment.

As pork producers, we do all we can to protect and enhance the environment around us. Discover more about our environmental protection efforts, including our manure management practices, which vary based on the farm's geographic location.

The videos show how piglets begin their life on a sow farm, what happens when they are moved to a nursery farm, and then to a finishing farm. Murphy-Brown employees also talk about the company's ISO 14001-certification, the international "gold" standard of environmental management, and offer unique insight regarding how the company cares for its animals.

Swine Marketing to Meet Consumer Demand

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The Government of Ontario gave an award to Willowgrove Hill Farms for their production of DHA Omega-3 enriched pork raised without antibiotics. This is an example of a swine production farm designing a product to meet consumer desires. Pushing aside the antibiotics debate, there is a market for those operations able to economically create a series of food products without antibiotics and can market to health benefits.

DHA/EPA Omega-3 is a fatty acid that is considered a health benefit to humans, specifically at

"reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke while helping to reduce symptoms of hypertension, depression, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), joint pain and other rheumatoid problems, as well as certain skin ailments." (WebMD.com)

China Re-opens to Live Swine Imports

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Live swine exports to China for genetics are going to resume, having been suspended since April 2009. Pending H1N1 testing, live swine will start being imported into China to help them build up their country's breeding programs.

"Unfortunately, for an industry such as purebred swine breeding stock, the big-picture political crossfire that exists between countries in general overshadowed the relevance and need for releasing the export ban," says [National Swine Registry CEO Darrell Anderson], noting the agreement for H1N1 testing was also a result of political necessity.

UK Stats on Animal Ag Updated

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UK national statistics from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs were recently updated, showing numbers on the slaughter of cattle, sheep and pigs. Key data for each industry slaughterings increased: Cattle 5%, Sheep 9%, and Pigs 9%. Production also increased for each industry increased: Cattle 5%, Sheep 11%, and Pigs 10%.

China's Trade Red Tape Impacts US Ag Exports

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Yes, China is a large market for US agricultural products. And this puts China in the driver's seat when US companies want to participate.

US farmers lose billions of dollars in sales each year because of China’s import restrictions on wheat, poultry, pork, cotton and other food and agricultural products, according to a recently released study from the US International Trade Commission. “China is our number one market for US agricultural product exports, but China’s unjustified trade barriers are blocking some of our goods such as wheat and beef,” Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus said in response to the new International Trade Commission study.

This study, published March 2011, describes government policies and other factors affecting "the conditions of competition in China’s agricultural market and trade".

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