UK pig semen used to improve Indian pork quality
Published:  05 January, 2017

For the first time, pig semen from UK animals has been used in India in a project to improve the country’s pig breeding stock and to produce better-quality pork.

The first ever frozen shipment of pig semen arrived in India and is being used by the Punjab Government to develop a high-health nucleus of pure-bred pigs.

The government is keen to utilise UK pigs to help develop its own industry and to produce high-quality and safe meat to serve to its population. A second order has already been placed.

The Agriculture & Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) has praised the initiative, claiming that it highlights the world-leading expertise of the British pig sector.

“This important development shows how we can lead in agri-tech ventures,” said Jean-Pierre Garnier, head of exports for AHDB. “This success was achieved against strong competition from other major pork-producing countries. With India due to become the most populated country in the world over the next few years and with a rapidly increasing demand for high-quality, safe meat, this type of development is essential.”

This development comes after three years of targeted market activities in Punjab. In June 2015, a high-level delegation from Punjab visited the UK and, in November of last year, AHDB – in conjunction with the British Pig Association – attended two important agricultural shows in northern India.

According to AHDB, this could open up more opportunities for British suppliers looking to India.

“We have built strong relationships with key Punjabi government officials,” said Christopher Jackson, export manager for the British Pig Association. “They are keen to use British pig expertise to develop their industry. This is a great opportunity for the entire British pig industry.”