2010 2011
Producers 15 15
Meat production  (t) 6158 6044
Quantity of feed  (t) um 27.000 um 27.000
Number of sows  3615 3619


It is considered certain that the settlers had moved pig with them to Iceland and the pork had been one of the main foods of the population at the time, partly due to the high fertility of the animals. When the weather was cooled, vegetation and grain production felled down, it came down on the pork farming that was shut down in the 16th century. In the middle of the 19th century the farming started again on a small scale, partly with the aim to increase the variability in food products and the economy. For the breeding pigs where imported from Denmark and other neighboring countries.


Nearly 30 thousand tons of feed

About 80 thousand pigs are slaughtered annually, about 35 thousand pigs in pig slaughterhouses in the country (piglets, sows and barks). Feeding pigs consisting of wheat, barley, soy meal, fish meal, fat, oil, and a vitamin mixture. The use of grain to feed livestock was in total 68,000 tons in 2008. About 53,000 tons were imported that year, or about 80 % of total use. Most was imported of maize and wheat.


Protein and fat in the diet of pigs

Growing has grown tremendously in the last 15 years. It is mainly because of three reasons, first the weather conditions become more favorable, selective breeding has developed rapidly, and third, the development of the price of imported grain led to increased cultivation. Despite improved conditions, the quality of production varies.


Opportunities in Icelandic Farming

Icelandic pig farmer’s opportunities lie in the potential use of domestic fodder to ensure cleanliness of the production and healthy products, while ensuring the welfare of animals and the production facilities and are in harmony with the environment. One element in ensuring the safety of products is to establish origin labeling pork. Consumers want and have a right to know the most about the origin of the goods they buy.

Icelandic pig slaughterhouses have received EU authorization. Little or nothing is moved out of pork and what has been shipped out has gone on the markets in Asia and Russia, where the requirements are less strict than in the EU. From 1 November 2011, all slaughterhouses in the country shall meet the EU rules under the Act. 143/2009.

Separation of pig halves

Before the carcass halves are taken in parts the tenderloins are removed from the leg, are under the posterior loin and in front of the thigh. The side muscle and the fat are attached.

The hindquarter of the pig half is separated from the middle part of the carcass by straight cut through the loin and side between 6. and 7. lumbar vertebrae so the whole hip spade follows the thigh.

The forequarter of the pig half is separated from the middle part with straight cut across the loin and side between 5. and 6. thoracic vertebrae so that the shoulder blade is include. Toes cut off. Skin and surface fat are included.

Pig middle is divided into loin and side. Limited to the cut parallel to the loin 3 – 6 cm from the end of the loin muscle.


Separation of sow halves

Sows are flayed straight after slaughter before cooling. When cooling is done the carcass is divided into hindquarter, forequarter and breast plate. Sows can be slaughtered at all ages and therefore there is a great variation in their weight and type. Commonly they are about 150 – 160 kg.

Tenderloins are cut from the hindquarter in whole piece.

Flank along with breast plate, is cut with a longitudinal cut from the thigh along with teat and breast plate on the side and breast in the forequarter. Then the forequarter is cut away between 5. and 6. rib.

Forequarter is cut from the hindquarter between 5. and 6. rib.

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