Canadian Manufacturing

3D imaging, selective breeding, feds invest $1M to create a better pig

Program aims to give Canada's $4.2 billion pork sector a boost, adding as much as $15 to the value of each hog



PHOTO: Rictor Norton & David Allen, via Flickr

Canada’s pork sector is worth approximately $4.2 billion. PHOTO: Rictor Norton & David Allen, via Flickr

QUEBEC CITY—Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is contributing $1 million toward efforts to breed superior swine.

Pork researchers at Quebec non-profit Fonds de recherche et développement de la production porcine (FRDPP) will use the funds to support a 3D imaging project aimed at improving the quality of pork cuts produced at farms in Quebec and across the country.

Using 3D scanning technology, the research teams will map out desirable internal traits in live pigs, identifying which hogs will produce the best cuts of pork—something that in the past could only be done after the hogs had been slaughtered. The teams will then be able to selectively breed the pigs endowed with superior pork profiles, ensuring the most desirable traits are passed on to subsequent generations.

The project is expected to increase profitability in Canada’s $4.2 billion pork sector, adding as much as $15 to the value of each hog.

Along with the federal funding, Quebec agriculture co-op La Coop fédérée supports the FRDPP researchers, which it founded to work on pork industry research and development projects.

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