Over the past three years, farmers across China have invested billions of dollars in huge, high-rise pig facilities.
Zhongxin Kaiwei Industrial Pig Farm, located in Ezhou City, Hubei Province, is equipped with many intelligent systems for automatic operation. The farm, dubbed the Pig’s Palace, opened earlier this month with a capacity of 650,000 pigs. With two 26-story buildings, it is currently the tallest pig farm in the world. When fully operational, the farm can process 100,000 tons of meat per year.
According to local media, this is an ambitious $550 million project implemented by the local government to increase the productivity of the agricultural livestock industry.
As of 2019, multi-story pig farms were still considered illegal in China. However, a violent outbreak of African swine fever in 2018 wiped out more than half of the country’s pigs. At the same time push up pork prices. The Chinese government later lifted the ban to increase output to meet demand.
The central control room on the first floor builds food and drink recipes for each floor. Indicators of temperature, environmental humidity, and toxic gas concentration are controlled in real-time. More than 30,000 control points determine the correct feeding of each pig.
The pigs here can take the elevator to the breeding area. They enjoy in-home veterinary services and well-thought-out meals with security cameras monitoring them.
The buildings are equipped with automatic gas troughs, smart air filtration and disinfection systems, and biogas waste treatment systems that convert pig manure into clean energy for electricity generation.
Some European countries have built multi-story pig farms. However, no farm has been built higher than 3 floors. Most farms have closed over the years due to management problems and public outcry against massive pig farming.
According to official estimates, China’s demand for pork is expected to grow from 51.77 million tons to 60.77 million tons over the next decade.