Iceland follows Norway in increasing pig welfare


Iceland follows Norway in increasing pig welfare

20 November 2019
Iceland, located between Europe and Northern America, is mostly known for its seafood. However, pigs are also gaining importance.

After several years of disease and welfare issues in its national pig herd, Iceland is now following the Norwegian model to increase herd health and productivity.

It is difficult to state the actual number of farmers that are active in one particular sector in Iceland as the majority of them are mixed farms with a little bit of everything. Dairy, pig and sheep farms are the most popular in the country as the Icelandic people do enjoy eating meat. Icelanders consume around 20-23kg per capita of pork while poultry and lamb is also very popular.

We have just legislated very ambitious animal welfare rules, equal to Norway...” – Ingvi Stefansson, a pig farmer and chairman of pig farmers in Iceland

Sales of pork in Iceland in 2015 totalled 6,364 tonnes which was 11.8% up on the previous year, when pork was on the cusp of overtaking lamb on the Icelandic market. In total, there were 6,462 tonnes of lamb sold in Iceland in 2015, which was 1.9% down on 2014 and second only to poultry at 8,201 tonnes. Since then pork has become even more favourable as tourists more used with pig meat order it in preference to lamb or chicken.