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Danish Pig Meat Industry

Denmark is among the world’s largest pig meat exporters.

For more than 100 years, the production of pigs and pig meat has been a major source of income for Denmark. Approx. 90 percent of the production is exported and is thereby essential to the Danish economy and the balance of trade. The Danish pig industry is among the world leaders in areas such as breeding, quality, food safety, animal welfare and traceability. This is the reason why Denmark is among the world’s largest pig meat exporters.

Danish pig meat producers observe high standards of animal welfare, and pig farmers constantly strive to improve the welfare of live pigs. EU regulations stipulate that by 2013 all pregnant sows must be kept in loose-housing systems. Denmark is already well on the way to fulfilling these requirements as 70 percent of all pregnant sows are kept in loose-housing systems. Danish pig production is characterised by high food safety standards and good animal health. Environmentally sustainable production methods are key to Danish pig production.

Around 5,000 pig farms in Denmark produce approx. 28 million pigs annually. Most pigs are slaughtered at the co-operative abattoirs Danish Crown and Tican. In addition, a substantial number of live piglets are exported, mainly to Germany.

Exports of pig meat account for almost half of all agricultural exports and for more than 5 percent of Denmark’s total exports. More than 70 percent of Danish pig meat production is exported to other EU countries, and the remaining part is exported to countries outside the EU.

Danish pig meat is exported to more than 140 countries, and the largest markets in terms of volume are Germany, UK, Poland, China, Japan, Italy, Russia and Sweden.

Read more about the Danish pigmeat industri at www.agricultureandfood.co.uk and www.pigresearchcentre.dk

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