4th Fatty Pig Science & Utilization International Conference
Fatty pigs are old, autochthonous, rustic breeds well adapted to their environment that make an advantageous use of local natural resources and are highly appreciated as sources of traditional meat products, not only for their high sensorial quality, but also for being considered as an important part of national and regional heritage. Important fatty pig breed populations are found worldwide, from Japan to the Eastern and South-Eastern continental Asia, Europe, South Africa and Latin America. These breeds are highly valuable genetic resources with a great potential for a high market value in some breeds and a highly prized quality standard in other cases, like the Iberian and Mangalica. However, they have been neglected in the past as meat producers when animal fat lost its value as a nutritional energy source. Later on, even their meat products became blamed as unhealthy and farmers lost their interest on these breeds due to their slower growth rate in comparison to modern, highly selected breeds.