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Piglet Castration

© FOUR PAWS | Klemencic

Every year 101.5 million pigs are castrated in European Union. Pig castration is not done for animal health neither for animal welfare but only to avoid the boar taint risk.


Most of the time, the castration is done without anaesthesia and is directly made by farmers and not by veterinarians. This generates a lot of pain for the piglets and this lasts for one week. Moreover, due to lack of hygiene, the wound can become infected which prolongs the pain for piglets.

European Declaration on alternatives to surgical castration of pigs

In 2010, several main actors in the pig meat chain have agreed on a plan to voluntarily end the surgical castration of pigs in Europe by 1 January 2018. The parties signed a "European Declaration on alternatives to surgical castration of pigs".

As a first step, from 1 January 2012, surgical castration of pigs, if carried out, can only be done with prolonged analgesia and/ or anaesthasia.

The declaration, the first of its kind at EU level for animal welfare, is open to all actors in the European pig meat sector.


You can download the document here.


For more information on this topic, please follow the link.