Know How / Pigs / Feed and nutrition

A good pig feeding programme is essential to maximise Feed Conversion Efficiency (FCR) and reduce days to slaughter. Feed accounts for 55-75% of total costs. Therefore, an effective diet can make a huge different to profits. Here you can find information on the nutrients required at different phases of the pig’s life.

AHDB resource

Download the feed budget planner spreadsheet

Download spreadsheet

Case studies

See all


How a pig feed system is helping cut costs

Installing a new feed system has allowed a pig producer to tailor feeding to individual pens and maximise Feed Conversion Efficiency (FCE). Vet and pig farmer Charlie Thompson took the…


How supplementary milk can improve piglet and sow production

Advances in a sow’s genetic ability to produce more live born piglets are forcing farmers to look at ways to better support the sow and her offspring. With only 12-14…


The challenges of pig farming in South Africa

South Africa, a land known for its tropical weather and miles of dry terrain, is hardly conducive to pig farming, with everything from temperature fluctuation to farm security to consider.…


How integration works on one US pig farm

Set in the heart of the US corn belt, Iowa is a farming mecca. Mile after mile of maize and soya bean fields make this an ideal place for pig…


How Dutch farmers reduced antibiotics use by 60%

Strict regulation has more than halved Dutch antibiotics use in recent years as a new era in farm health planning and probiotics has driven livestock systems. More frequent veterinary visits,…


How one UK pig producer is managing without zinc oxide

Zinc oxide is to be phased out of pig diets by 2022 under new EU rules. We spoke to one UK producer to find out how he is already managing…

Practical advice

See all


3 tips to help cut zinc oxide from weaner diets

Reducing protein levels and increasing feed intake are helping a growing number of Danish piggeries remove zinc oxide from weaner diets.    A study of the practices on Danish farms…


Complete guide to feeding creep to piglets

Creep feeding is key to the piglet’s gut development and growth pre-weaning, helping prepare it for smooth weaning and good lifetime performance. Dr Sian Nichols, UK pig nutritionist at Harbro,…


How food and drink by-products can cut costs for pig farmers

By-products from food and drink manufacturing are helping to future-proof pig farms from rising feed costs. Co-products can cost as little as £1.20 per percentage point of dry matter (DM)…


Expert tips for reducing feed waste on your pig farm

Feed accounts for around 70% of costs on pig farms but producers could trim this if they tackled wastage from inefficiencies and poor feed management.  An AHDB Pork study estimates…


4-step guide to pig feeding and rations

Feed accounts for about 60-70% of the cost of pigmeat production. It is, therefore, important to get the formulations and rations right at each stage of growth. Feeding diets that…


How pig producers can cut feed wastage on farm

With feed price increases always a looming threat, we look at ways pig producers can ease the pressure by taking steps to reduce any feed wastage on farm. The following…


See all


5 zinc oxide alternatives for pigs compared

In less than three years, UK pig producers will need to know how to prevent post-weaning diarrhoea in piglets without using zinc oxide. The European Union has ruled that from…


Moving drinkers next to hoppers doubles pigs' feed intake

Placing drinkers near hoppers doubles pigs’ feed intakes, an experiment has found. Feeding habits were monitored 24-hours a day across six batches of pigs – 420 in total – using Farmex data…


Alternatives to antibiotic growth promoters for pigs

Since the use of antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs) was banned in the EU in 2006, there’s been growing interest in alternatives that can reduce the impact of pig disease and…

Feeding pigs silage offers sustainability gains

Growing and finishing traditional breed pigs on a grass silage total mixed ration (TMR) is a cost-effective way to produce a high-welfare product, research on an Oxfordshire farm shows. Trials…