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BREEDING ▶▶▶


Planes full of


breeding pigs


heading for China


BY KEES VAN DOOREN, REPORTER, BOERDERIJ I


Axiom’s breeding pigs are neatly placed inside the French plane. 10


▶PIG PROGRESS | Volume 36, No. 4, 2020


nsatiable – that’s how China’s current hunger for breed- ing pigs has been described. It’s educated guesswork, but insiders speak of as many as 10 million F1 gilts being needed (see also box). What can be said for sure, howev-


er, is that the repopulation of Chinese pig houses has defi- nitely taken off – with France playing a pivotal role as that is where most long-haul flights with breeding pigs depart from. The country traditionally maintains good international rela- tionships – to the profit of the French-based genetics compa- nies. For instance, the French breeding organisation Axiom has already sent six planes, carrying a total of 5,115 breeding pigs, to China. The Dutch-Norwegian breeding company Topigs Norsvin is also involved, having shipped 500 boars to China from a nu- cleus farm in France, aimed for their Chinese partner. Another genetics supplier is the French company Nucléus. Its export manager, Julien Rogon, explains that this year the company has already shipped 1,000 breeding animals to Chi- na. Because of Covid-19, air travel has reduced to almost nothing. Still, the company aims to send a second shipment of breeding pigs to China as soon as possible. Breeding organisations have long been preparing for an ex- plosion in Chinese demand for genetics. Jim Schirmer is responsible for Business Development in Asia with Choice


PHOTO: AXIOM


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