Marco Lunati, owner of Az Ag. Guido is a 550 sow weaner producer, and has been using Hermitage classic hybrid gilts since 2005, purchasing his replacement females directly from Hermitage nucleus units in Ireland. For the last year he is averaging over 27.4 piglets weaned per sow per year and achieving over 92% farrowing rates.
Recently, Marco reported record farrowings on his unit and an article was published in the main national newspaper in Milan ‘La Repubblica’. One Hermitage sow gave birth to 26 healthy viable pigs and she is a second parity sow and as a gilt she produced 18 good strong piglets. Another Hermitage sow gave birth to a litter of 24 piglets.
The article translates as follows:
“Two record farrowings were reported at Lodi, last week in the hamlet of Basiasco, near Mairago, Gina and Alba two sows from Gudio farm farrowed litters of 26 and 24 piglets respectively.
“This is an exceptional occurrence", explains Carlo Corino, director of the Animal production faculty at the University of Milan, it is not unusual to assist hyper prolific births up to 18 piglets per farrowing but to exceed twenty is exceptional, especially if we consider that the average number of piglets born per litter in Italy is much lower than the northern European countries where 13 piglets born is normal.
Marco Lunati the owner and manager of the 500 sow unit in Lodi is sustaining the two litters with a specific ration of Milk and protein.
“These results demonstrate the high level of specialization that has been achieved by Italian pig breeders” reported local farmers association.