Aarhus University Seal / Aarhus Universitets segl

Thinh Tuan Chu

The Effect of Using Organic or Conventional Sires on Genetic Gain in Organic Pigs: A Simulation Study

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

DOI

Simple Summary Breeding programs are used for the selection and breeding of animals that maximize a breeding objective in a specific production environment. Currently, breeders use pigs from conventional populations to breed organic pigs. This could be problematic, because pigs that perform best in an indoor and controlled conventional environment may not perform as well in the outdoor and less-controlled organic environment. To test this theory, we simulated different breeding programs for organic pigs. We used our knowledge on the genetics of the Danish pig population to make the simulations as realistic as possible. The first simulated breeding program used conventional boars to breed organic pigs. The second simulated breeding program used only organic pigs to breed for organic pigs. The results of the current study illustrate the importance of using pigs from an organic breeding population to breed organic pigs. If conventional pigs are used instead, the organic pigs will be adapted to suit a conventional production system. Current organic pig-breeding programs use pigs from conventional breeding populations. However, there are considerable differences between conventional and organic production systems. This simulation study aims to evaluate how the organic pig sector could benefit from having an independent breeding program. Two organic pig-breeding programs were simulated: one used sires from a conventional breeding population (conventional sires), and the other used sires from an organic breeding population (organic sires). For maintaining the breeding population, the conventional population used a conventional breeding goal, whereas the organic population used an organic breeding goal. Four breeding goals were simulated: one conventional breeding goal, and three organic breeding goals. When conventional sires were used, genetic gain in the organic population followed the conventional breeding goal, even when an organic breeding goal was used to select conventional sires. When organic sires were used, genetic gain followed the organic breeding goal. From an economic point of view, using conventional sires for breeding organic pigs is best, but only if there are no genotype-by-environment interactions. However, these results show that from a biological standpoint, using conventional sires biologically adapts organic pigs for a conventional production system.

Original languageEnglish
Article number455
JournalAnimals
Volume12
Issue4
Number of pages14
ISSN2076-2615
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

    Research areas

  • breeding plan, organic pig production, GxE, genetic improvement, economic value, BREEDING PROGRAMS, ENVIRONMENT INTERACTIONS, GENOMIC SELECTION, BIRTH-WEIGHT, PREWEANING SURVIVAL, LITTER SIZE, GENOTYPE, TRAITS, EFFICIENCY, GROWTH

See relations at Aarhus University Citationformats

ID: 266893449