Amsterdam, December 1st, 2011
Pig farmer Annechien ten Have-Mellema:
“Retail and NGO’s have to support farmers”
“Pig farmers want to end castration of male piglets, but we need the support of all partners in the pork supply chain,” stated pig farmer and chairman of farmers organization LTO Nederland, Annechien ten Have-Mellema, at the international conference ‘Boars heading for 2018’ in Amsterdam on December 1st, 2011. Ten Have-Mellema emphasized the need of co-operation within the whole chain as the key factor for successful ending of castration of male piglets in 2018 in the EU.
During the international conference ‘Boars heading for 2018’ Ten Have-Mellema explained that in the Netherlands anti-castration is high on the agenda since the beginning this century.
In 2007 all partners in the pork supply chain in the Netherlands agreed on the goal to end castration in 2015.
No castration has advantages for the pig farmer, Ten Have-Mellema said. ,,At our farm we do realize better technical results. A financial benefit of plus 7 Euro can be reached with boars compared to barrows. Another advantage is that we can end inconvenient castration labour.” Pig farmer Annechien ten Have-Mellema sketched her positive experiences in raising boars during the last 15 years. ,,Working with boars is not more difficult, but it is different. Of course we have challenges and we still have a lot to learn. The key to success in this matter is the cooperation between the pig farmer and his advisros from the feed company and the veterinarian.”
Annechien ten Have-Mellema emphasized that pig farmers want and can change the situation. But only if all partners in the pork supply chain embrace the Brussels declaration. ,,Our European farmers organization Copa-Cogeca signed the declaration already. We really hope other parties will follow.”
Towards NGO’s and retail parties Ten Have-Mellema said: ,,Let us put together maximum effort in market acceptance and to find solutions for some challenges we still have to conquer. We need the support of European retail, food companies and NGO’s. To them I say, join us to reach our goals in 2018.”
About Annechien ten Have-Mellema
Annechien ten Have-Mellema is pig farmer, chairman of the steering committee of the Dutch project ‘Ending castration of male piglets’, vice-chairman of the Product Board for Livestock and Meat and chairman of the Dutch farmers organization LTO Nederland, section pig farming. Ten Have-Mellema has a family-operated breeding farm with 320 sows, production of gilts and fattening pigs. Since 1995 the farm is fattening non-castrated boars. Since 2000 sows are housed in groups on straw.