Updated pig code released: improvements and shortfalls

Canadians for Ethical Treatment of Farmed Animals

The updated Code of Practice for the Care & Handling of Pigs has been officially released.

Highlights of the revised code include: industry commitment to adopt loose housing for sows and gilts; pain control requirement; and enhanced environmental enrichment. We briefly discuss these points in relation to their impact on animal welfare.

Industry commitment to adopt loose housing for sows and gilts:

The Updated code requires that sows be housed in groups – with separate space for eating, sleeping, and eliminating – in all facilities built or rebuilt after July 1, 2014.   This requirement may positively and rapidly impact the welfare of hundreds of thousands of animals.

For example, in Manitoba – one of the three largest pig producing provinces – there are about 318,000 sows kept for reproduction, most of them inside cruel gestation crates. In this province, the majority of barns were built between the late…

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