Figures from the Spanish ministry of the Environment shows that Spain 50 million pigs houses. That there are 3.5 million more than the number of people that live there. And that is bad news for the environment.
The Spaniards and their ham, they love them. And how. Pigmeat production was there last year for 4 million tonnes of meat, and delivered a turnover of 6 billion euro.
Since 2013, there are in addition another 9 million pigs have been added in the South-European country. This counts for the first time since the statistics are maintained more pigs than people.
The ever increasing varkenspopulatie ensures that livestock farming is the fourth largest producer of greenhouse gases in Spain is, after transport, the energy sector and the industry. Pigs consume also giant quantities of water every animal drinks up to fifteen litres of water per day. Environmentalists point out, moreover, that the nitrates in their feces pollute the groundwater.
And then there are the food scandals. This year, dismantled by the Spanish police, a network of rogue vleeshandelaren that pork to bring to market that the expiration date had already exceeded.
Others are not to the traditional and well-defined way in which a pig must be bred before may be spoken of jamón ibérico de bellota, the most expensive variant of Spanish pork. That meat should that name, only wear it when the animals the last months of their life spent in an oak forest, and there is nothing but acorns to eat were.
‘When there is not enough control is on a product for which the demand is very high, but the supply is so low, then you get such rogue practices, ” says pig farmer Francisco Espárrago from Extremadura against The Guardian.
An average Spaniard eats annually 21 kilograms of pork.