Through the OPTIPORC project, the Catalan Association of Select Pig Breeders and the IRTA will study the environmental footprint and the water footprint in pigs of different genetic type.•The results obtained will help the pig production and breeding industry to guide strategies towards the improvement of its environmental and economical sustainability.
The key points to achieve sustainable and efficient pig production consist on a better use of resources and a reduction of the environmental footprint. Last September, the OPTIPORC pilot project was launched, aimed at generating knowledge and developing innovative strategies to optimize efficiency in the use of resources and to reduce pollutant emissions from pig
farms using different pig genetic types. The objective is to transfer tools and knowledge to the pig production and breeding industry to guide strategies towards improving its environmental and economic sustainability.
On the one hand, the project will focus on carrying out a complete characterization of the environmental footprint and the water footprint of the conventional pig production systems,
using different pig genetics. On the other hand, work will also be done on the identification of biomarkers that allow for indirect measurements of the levels of emissions and feed efficiency of the animals, and that could be used in selection schemes to improve sustainability.
Another aspect that will be evaluated throughout the project will be the mitigating effect for food efficiency derived from genetic selection. Innovative nutritional strategies will also be
tested, analysing their impact on the consumption and digestibility of nutrients, the reduction of emissions, the productive performance and the economic balance of the system.
The Operative Group responsible for OPTIPORC is led by Selección Batallé and counts with the participation of UPB Genetic World, Gepork Group, Baró Germans, Piensos San Antonio
and the Catalan Association of Select Pig Breeders (ACCBPS). The Institute for Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA) is its coordinator and will be in charge of the project's tests and research.