January 5, 2016

 

Smithfield transfers 81.8% of pregnant sows to group housing in 2015

 

 

 

Smithfield had transitioned 81.8% of preganant sows on all its US farms to group housing systems by the end of 2015.

 

This effort resulted in a 10% increase of transfer rate compared to 2014. Smithfield plans to complete the US transition by 2017.

 

At the start of 2016, more than eight out of every ten pregnant sows on company-owned farms in the US are held within group housing systems.

 

"At Smithfield Foods, we are committed to keeping animals safe, comfortable and healthy," said Ken Sullivan, Smithfield Foods' president and CEO.

 

"As the world's largest pork producer, we have a responsibility to be a leader in animal care, and we view our conversion of the pregnant sow housing system as a key component of our dedication to this goal."

 

In addition to efforts at its company-owned farms, Smithfield Foods previously announced that the company expects all US contract growers to complete a transition to group housing by 2022.

 

To support its partners, Smithfield Foods offers guidance and expertise to contract growers throughout the conversion process.

 

Smithfield's international hog production operations also have a goal of converting to group housing systems on all its farms outside the US by 2022, including Mexico. Smithfield's hog production operations in Poland (AgriPlus) and Romania (Smithfield Ferme) fully converted to group housing years ago.

 

"Smithfield has a robust animal care management programme that guides the care animals receive at every stage of their lives,"  said Stewart Leeth, Smithfield Food's vice president and chief sustainability officer. "This not only supports our goals for improving the health and well-being of animals, but also provides consumers with the safest food possibe. Our commitment to the transition to group housing for pregnant sows goes hand-in-hand with other pledges, such as our removal of ractopamine from feed for all company-owned animals supplied to our processing facilities, and other steps that have placed us at the forefront of the hog production industry in the US."

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