By Simon Wragg

THE pig industry is facing a shortage of skilled labour, according to the National Centre for Pig Industry Training.

The centres Mike Bell said numbers coming forward were falling and anecdotal evidence suggests many existing stockmen are still leaving the industry.

That could leave a vacuum of staff able to look after stock efficiently as and when pig numbers increase, effectively putting producers margins at risk.

His concern is backed up by advisers who report many units have pulled back operations and are surviving by just using family labour.