Organic the best choice for Pigs

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Jamie Oliver launches a new campaign this week – this time it’s about pigs.  Jamie wants to raise the awareness of how pigs are reared on British farms, and encourages the British Public to buy British. However, the series will also reveal how the UK food labelling system is leaving customers confused.

We would encourage people to take the ‘gold standard’ for animal welfare, and buy Soil Association standard ORGANIC pork, bacon, gammons and hams. That’s what we sell at Sheepdrove Organic Farm.

Sheepdrove pigs enjoy the outdoors and have sheltered rubbing posts

Pigs at Sheepdrove Organic Farm enjoy the outdoors and Peter Kindersley has even designed special shelters for them. These mobile shelters go with the pigs as they move from field to field, and they are multi-purpose: a social meeting place with lots of shade and rubbing posts!

Emma Hockridge, Soil Association policy campaigner:
“If you want to be sure that pigs really do lead a happy life then buy organic.”

Joyce d’Silva from Compassion in World Farming:
“Organic farming has the potential to offer the very highest standards of animal welfare. Organic systems place a high emphasis on good management, this is to ensure the factors that reduce pig immunity and increase the risks of disease are prevented. Compassion in World Farming believes that the Soil Association’s welfare standards are leaders in the field.”

Why Organic?

Soil Association organic standards require pigs to have direct access to vegetation and the soil, and farrowing crates are banned. Only organic standards ensure that pigs have a truly ‘free range’ life, one which is as near as possible to their wild boar ancestors‘, and which enables them to exhibit their naturally social behaviour.

Pigs are highly intelligent and curious animals. Penned in and without stimulation, boredom can lead to aggression, ear and tail biting – so over 80% of non-organic pigs have their tails cut off. Female pigs reared indoors on non-organic farms can still be confined to small crates before giving birth for up to five weeks – causing stress and preventing them from building a nest and looking after their piglets after they are born.

In non-organic systems an estimated 60% of breeding sows and 93% of pigs reared for meat spend most or all of their life indoors – the majority on solid or slatted concrete or perforated metal.

The Soil Association has produced an online briefing and poster to highlight some of the cruel practices of non-organic pig production – www.soilassociation.org/pigs

‘Jamie Saves Our Bacon’ will be broadcast on Channel 4, Thursday 29 January, 9pm.
www.channel4.com/food/on-tv/jamie-oliver/jamie-saves-our-bacon/index.html

Support the pig herd at Sheepdrove – and make a saving at the same time! Try our special offer on whole or half pigs, fully butchered. On now, for a limited time at the online Sheepdrove shop.

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