Pig farmers in the Central division recently participated in ‘an open discussion’ on general stockman-ship issues.

The meeting was organised by the Pig Association, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, and held at the Koronivia Research Station.

Pig Association President, Simon Cole, said, “Stockman-ship includes the right way to care for pigs, ensuring pregnancies in sows and taking care of piglets.

“The important thing is that this was not a lecture. Participating farmers shared their experiences, lessons learned and best practices, as they looked at workable solutions already carried out by other farmers.

Cole said that Nigel Kavanagh of Vuda Piggeries led the discussions.

 “The aim of these workshops is to improve efficiency and profitability.  This was the third such discussion group the Association has organised. Visiting veterinarian and animal nutritionists have previously shared their expertise with the farmers.

“Through the assistance of the Pig Association, pig farmers have been able to receive training, animal medicine, and extension advice from the Ministry of Agriculture, to support them in the operation of their farms,” said Cole.   

The Pig Association is one of 14 commodity associations that make up the Fiji Crop and Livestock Council (FCLC). The other commodities are Beekeepers, Cocoa, Copra, Dairy, Dalo, Fiji Food Exporters Association, Fruits and Vegetables, Ginger, Grazing Livestock, Organics, Rice, Spice, and Yaqona.  Of the 60,000 non-sugar farmers in Fiji, 30,000 are registered with the Council. 

Cole said that the Pig Association plans inviting short-term visiting experts to participate in similar discussions with more groups of their membership.

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