To meet unprecedented demand for the prolific AC1 hybrid gilt in the Philippines, Wellisa Farms has invested 15 million Philippine pesos (over £200,000) to expand its nucleus herd from 300 to 700 sows to increase production. It expects sales to double in 2009.The company set up the unit on the tropical island of Bantayan in Cebu province in 2006 using stock, under licence, from British pig-breeding company ACMC.
The original aim was to supply their own breeders within an integrated operation tied-in with Cebu city’s abattoirs. Surplus gilts were sold to other pig farmers in the area and such was the prolificacy of the stock that this soon developed into a healthy market with demand coming from both existing and new customers, mainly on small-to-medium sized farms.
Geographically, sales go to Cebu and the Visayan Archipelago, with some stock being shipped to the main island of Luzon.
The AC1 gilt is produced by crossing ACMC’s Meidam female with the Volante damline boar. Having expanded from existing nucleus stock Wellisa Farms will be importing more animals and semen from Britain to keep their genetics up-to-date.
“Due to the Meidam genes, the AC1 can produce over two pigs more per litter than normal commercial sows in the Philippines,” commented Stephen Curtis ACMC’s chairman.
The stock is well adapted to the tropical weather and conditions in the Philippines and, having proved itself, has now become widely accepted,” said Danny Silbor, managing director, of ACMC’s Filipino franchise.
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