There are two main reasons why traditional pig farming is still coexisting with modern pig farming in Uganda;
👉 Some farmers are limited by resources such as finances to buy improved genetics, quality feeds, pay labour and build ideal pig shelters.
👉 This is how pig farming has been done for a long time in Uganda. For those who grew up from families growing pigs like me understand that pigs were kept at the backyard and feeding comprised of peelings, left overs, non-commercial roots of sweet potatoes and cassava leaves.
Traditional pig farmers are more exposed to risks such as disease outbreaks, mycotoxicosis and low grade pork. However, this does not mean they completely make no money. Since their inputs range from free to very cheap, whatever money got after sale is profit. After all, most traditional producers carry out pig farming as a side activity. It is not usually their main business.
Due to the fact that it has existed here for a long time, traditional pig farming set standards that make trade between commercial pig farmers and pork joints/butchers difficult.
The systems in most pig abattoirs have also been designed to obey the norms of traditional pig farming:
👉 There is excessive trimmings which reduce the killing out percentage.
👉 Pigs are slaughtered unhygienically, pork is poorly handled, harsh treatment to pigs before slaughter etc.
👉 Offal (legs, heads and internal organs) is not valued. It is taken for free.
The traditional category has also influenced pork consumer’s tastes and preferences.
👉 Free range or locally produced pigs are tastier. Of course, this is what they are used to in their “kafundas”.
👉 You must hide when eating pork because the meat is associated with unhygienic and rudimentary production/marketing systems.
👉 Dishes from pork are only two, barbecue and pan-fried.
Therefore, a commercial pig farmer must be careful when choosing market for their pigs. Traditional abattoirs may not be a market option.