Feeding food scraps (swill) to pigs
Feeding food scraps (also known as swill) to pigs is illegal in Australia because it could result in the introduction of devastating diseases to pigs and other animals.
Feeding food scraps to pigs was linked to the catastrophic outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) in the United Kingdom in 2001, which cost their economy an estimated $30 billion. A similar outbreak in Australia could cost upwards of $15 billion and shut down our animal industries.
While it may seem like a good idea to give leftover food from households, supermarkets or bakeries to your pigs, foods that contain meat or meat products or have had contact with meat or meat products could introduce diseases such as FMD to Australia.
The department conducts regular checks of pig owners to monitor for swill-feeding practices. Anyone found guilty of feeding swill to pigs could be fined up to $2000 per offence.
For more information read STOP! Don’t feed food scraps to pigs!, it covers the following topics:
- Which foods (swill) are illegal to feed to pigs?
- Which foods are safe to feed to pigs?
- What should I do with food scraps?
- Audits and penalties
Page updated: January 2012
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