Smithfield Foods released a video showing its group sow housing progress and what pregnant sows' lives are like on company-owned pig farms. In 2007, the world's largest hog producer announced it was phasing out individual gestation stalls in favor of group housing for pregnant sows by 2017.
When completed in 2017, it is estimated that the U.S. conversion will have cost about $300 million. In addition, Smithfield's international hog production operations also will complete their conversions to group housing on company-owned farms by 2022.
"We think this is both an entertaining and informative look at how we are caring for pregnant sows, with actual footage from our sow farms that helps to explain how the group housing system ensures the safety, comfort and health of the sows during the gestation process," says Dennis H. Treacy, Smithfield's executive vice president and chief sustainability officer.