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The organic livestock husbandry of pigs

Happy pigs?

Fattened pigs in conventional husbandry have no "happy life" at all. But what about the organic fattened pigs (who only cover a 0,7% of all pigs in Germany in 2009)? The organic pig can claim the legal right of double space compared to a conventional kept pig - sounds great, but what does it really mean?

The 100 kilo-pig within 2,3 square meters

A 100 kilo fattened pig won't probably feel happier by the fact that he is given 2,3 square meters stable space being an "organic" pig (see ANNEX III, chart 1 on page 38 of the EC - organic terms of reference). It's not possible to separate room to stay, food and feces in such small spaces. That's why the organic husbandry also creates pig stables that are out of the question not only for sanitary reasons.

Beyond the green fields

Organic pigs have no claim for really being outside and can't "legally" insist in feeling green grass underneath their feet, just like their comrades in conventional husbandry. "Being outside" only means that one must provide them some small outside space with concrete floor from time to time. It is even enough to replace one wall of the stable by a fence. And slatted floors are also legal - just not over the whole place.

"Having a litter" in a box

Breeding sows in farrowing crates or in smallest "litter boxes", 100 days of the year being locked up motionless - this is also "organic". After only 40 days of lactation the piglets can be separated from their mothers. "Organic" is no happy pig taking a bath in muddy water. "Organic" is cheating the consumer consciously with the image of an idyllic farm animal world where there is none.


Bioschwein im Biokastenstand
Organic pig in organic farrowing crate

tote Bioferkel im Biostall
Dead organic piglets in organic stable


The video documentary about the subject:

Pictures of organic pig breeding and fattening:

Biokastenstandtotes Bioferkel
Bioschwein im AbferkelgestellBioschwein im Kastenstanderdrücktes Bioferkel trotz Abferkelgestell


 The V-booklet