Photo of Lighting for pig units

Ben Williams

Knowledge Transfer Senior Manager

AHDB Pork Knowledge Exchange


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T: work 024 7647 8623

Lighting for pig units

Home \ Research & Innovation \ Research \ Production Efficiency \ Lighting for pig units

Research partners: Dr Nina Taylor

Sponsors: AHDB Pork

Duration: 2010 

Aims and objectives

  • To review the scientific evidence for lighting management in pig production
  • To indicate where further research on lighting for pigs is needed
  • To suggest optimal lighting environments
  • To comment on the suitability of the poultry-bespoke LED for pigs
  • To suggest an alternative pig-tailored LED spectrum and lighting that is more suited to pigs’ needs. 


  • The amount of research available on the effect of lighting is minimal and does not provide sufficient evidence to make accurate conclusions
  • It is not believed that reducing the red component of the light will have any significant behavioural benefits or detrimental effects on pigs, therefore, the bespoke poultry LED may be suitable for use on pig units
  • Although the colour balance has been shown to reduce aggression and feather pecking in poultry, it is unlikely to influence behaviour such as tail biting in pigs because this is not triggered visually
  • One key benefit of LED lighting is the ability to dim the lights, providing dawn and dusk periods, reducing the competition for food when lights are switched on in the morning
  • Information on seasonality in pigs would be beneficial, especially with regard to over or under use of lighting and, therefore, wasting energy or providing a suboptimal environment. 

Further information