PIG GROWTH STAGES
Since its beginning, pig farming has existed to produce pork. The global industry continues to evolve with the aim to use the best and latest available techniques to produce healthy pigs that provide quality pork for human consumption.
Pig production stages
Pig production takes place in four general phases:
- Breeding-gestation occurs when a number of female pigs (sows and gilts) are bred. A sow's gestation period lasts for approximately three months, three weeks and three days.
- When pregnant sows are close to giving birth, they are moved to a farrowing pen for approximately four weeks, where the sow gives birth (farrows) and rears her piglets in a protected environment.
- Once weaned, piglets are placed in a nursery until they are approximately 8-10 weeks of age.
- The last stage in pig production is known as grow-finish, or fattening, when pigs are fed until they reach market weight. Pigs are normally sold for meat at five to six months of age (older in some countries). It's during this stage that boar taint can start to develop in uncastrated male pigs, also known as boars.
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