Information for the Smaller Pork Producer

Ron Bazylo, Swine Specialist

Here is some information and important aspects for raising hogs on smaller operations. Rations: Typically, a minimum of five diets is required when raising hogs. Below are the suggested rations and examples of each:

  1. Dry (Pregnant) Sow - 91.5% Barley, 5.0% Soybean or Canola Meal and 3.5% Sow Premix. The sow premix contains mainly calcium and phosphorus. It does not contain any protein. It usually contains all of the required minerals and vitamins. Boars are usually fed this ration as well.
  2. Nursing Sow - 45.0% Wheat, 30.5% Barley, 21.0% Soybean Meal and 3.5% Sow Premix. Wheat is used in this ration to increase the energy of this ration. Sows should be coming into heat within 4-7 days after weaning. If they are not, it is due mainly to a lack of energy intake during nursing. The sows should not be nursing for more than 30 days as they will lose too much condition.
  3. Weaner Pigs (7-25 kg): This ration is very complex, so it may be easier to purchase a pelleted starter feed. Important: Starter feeds and some premixes contain antibiotics, so do not feed any of this feed to sows or older pigs that may be slaughtered before the withdrawal times.
  4. Grower Pigs (25-50 kg) - 45.0% Wheat, 37.3% Barley, 15.0% Soybean Meal and 2.7% Grower Premix (The grower premix is not the same as the sow premix. It also contains no protein.)
  5. Finisher Pigs (50 kg - market weight) - 89.7% Barley, 7.8% Soybean Meal and 2.5% Grower Premix Note: Soybean Meal can be substituted with canola meal and/or peas. If this is the case, different percentages are required. Contact your Ag. Rep. Office for a ration if you are doing so.

Herd Health: Sows should be vaccinated parvovirus and erysipelas vaccines regularly. Sows should be dewormed two times per year. Pigs at 8 weeks of age also need to be vaccinated for erysipelas and dewormed. These are the minimum vaccines required. Contact your local veterinarian for a vaccination program.

Marketing: If you are selling any market pigs or culled breeding stock through Manitoba Pork, contact them for a producer number.

Management: Ideally you would like your sows to have two or more litters per year.

Breed Female (6-8 months of age)
Gestation (pregnancy) 115 days
Weaned at 28 days
Rebred 6 days
149 days

365 d/149 d = 2.4 litters/year. Ideally each sow should have at least 10 pigs born alive. For further information on pork production, contact your local Ag. Rep. office.