Northern Ireland pig census suggests expansion
Northern Ireland, total pig numbers increased by 9% compared with June 2013.
According to the latest figures published by the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development in Northern Ireland, total pig numbers increased by 9% compared with June 2013. At 525,600 head, this was a direct result of more fattening pigs due to improved productivity combined with increased imports from neighbouring Ireland. There was a 10% year-on-year increase in the ‘other pigs’ category which includes piglets, weaners, and finishers.
At 43,900 head, the total female breeding herd expanded by 3% compared with June 2013. The slower expansion in the breeding herd relative to the total pig numbers confirms that there has been some improvement in productivity. While the latest figures suggest a notable expansion in the herd, gilts not yet in pig recorded a 1% decline compared with the same period a year earlier, which could limit growth going forward.