Fallen livestock cannot be buried or burnt in the open because of the risk of disease spread through groundwater or air pollution. The Animal By-products Regulations control how carcases are disposed of.
Pigs that have died or been dispatched on a farm can be incinerated subject to certain criteria being met, or be taken to/collected by an approved fallen stock collector, hunt kennel, incinerator or renderer, either by private arrangement or under the National Fallen Stock Scheme.
These methods of disposal can be costly to producers and consume energy. Collection and transport can also mean an associated risk of disease transmission.
In non-EU countries composting of carcases provides a lower cost disposal option. AHDB Pork is participating in research projects exploring bio-reduction of fallen pigs and associated disease risks to provide a scientific base for any possible regulatory review. For details of these projects, please see links below: