The nation’s breeding stock is starting to be built up by the Pig Industry Board in Zimbabwe with a target of 25,000 sows to ensure exports are met.
A five-year strategic plan was instigated by industry stakeholders in 2003 following a drop in about 7,000 sows between 1994 and 2003 due to production problems created by disused pig units during the land reforms.
The plan succeeded in achieving a growth of around 4,000 sows between 2005 and 2007.
Dr Paul Ndiweni, the Pig Industry Board’s Director, commented that “this growth was reached by organising farmers into a national association to improve the supply chain and by assisting farmers with finance training and accessing inputs”.
Modern breeding station
He also announced the building of a modern pig breeding station in Acturus able to hold 1,500 sows and a multiplier unit for 1,000 sows at Bulawayo station in an attempt to create a target herd of 25,000 sows by 2009.
Over the next few years, the board will work together with banks to finance 200 commercial pig units of 500 sows.
Nidweni commented that “the response and demand from farmers and especially new farmers is overwhelming”.