Pig producers in Spain's Catalunya region have called for a delay to the implementation of new animal welfare rules, due to be introduced by the European Union on January 1, 2013.

The new welfare rules will see gestation stalls banned and will require sows to be group housed at a minimum from week four post-service until day seven pre-farrow, but Spain’s farmers say that with their current financial difficulties, compliance with the new measures would make pig production unviable.