The largest fully organic piggery in Belgium opened on Monday in Ruiselede, West Flanders. It is being operated by BioVar.be with the collaboration of Delavie, which is active in transport, slaughtering and cutting, and the Colruyt group.
“We wish to bring local Belgian products onto the market,” explained Stefan Goethaert, General Director of Colruyt’s Fine Food Department. “The supply of organic pork is minimal in Belgium, so we have to import. All that will change.”
In Belgium the demand for organic pork exceeds supply. Harpo, which supports businesses in the pork sector, went on the lookout for partners and producers wishing to convert to organic production, but did not find any. It thus went on to create BioVar.be, the country’s first organic piggery that produces on a large scale.
A flaming-new high-tech, energy-neutral pigpen was thus built at Ruiselede. It conforms to local legislation so it has no boxes for the pigs, which feed in total freedom. Moreover, piglets stay with their mothers for at least 40 days after their birth. BioVar.be also sets much store by respect for animal well-being and even names all its sows. These arrived from Denmark in July last, according to Wim Haeck, head of BioVar.Be
BioVar.Be aims to convince the new actors to convert to organic production and accompany them in their transition. The meat it produces will be on the market from summer 2019.