It’s the culture of British Quality Pigs (BQP) that undoubtedly underpins its success as the largest pig producer in the country.

The company, which is responsible for 10% of the UK sow herd population, is operating efficient, high-welfare outdoor systems that produce exactly what its customers require.

See also: 2017 FW Awards: Pig Farmer of the Year finalists

Howard Revell

British Quality Pigs, Stradbroke, Suffolk

Howard Revell in a pig shed

Howard Revell © Tim Scrivener

Winning ways

  • Continuous innovation
  • High welfare and ethical production
  • Customer focused
  • Strong environmental attributes 

Although all the pigs are managed by contract farmers such as Howard, BQP has a firm handle on technical performance on each of its farms.

It uses software to analyse performance figures, while field officers help farmers better their key performance indicators.

There is a constant drive to improve performance on each of the farms through new technologies. 

For example, BQP works closely with genetics companies to enhance the performance of sows and even conducts research on one of its units.

Innovative troughs for feeding sows reduce wastage and environmental issues and buildings for growing pigs optimise their welfare.

The business is actively involved in helping find solutions to industry problems such as antibiotics use.

Investing more than a million pounds to install select dosers on every contract grower-finisher farm is part of the initiative to reduce medicine use.

It works closely with its main customer Waitrose and is passionate about educating consumers by promoting pig production at farm events.

An environmental protection report is produced prior to pigs going into any unit. This provides recommendations on improvements to protect the surrounding area.

Finalists in the Pig Farmer of the Year category were:

  • Guy King, Park House, Norfolk
  • Stephen and Karen Thompson, Povey Farm, Yorkshire