China builds 26-storey 'pig skyscraper', experts warn of disease outbreak risks
China: The ‘pig skyscraper’ has been made to meet China's demand for pork, the most popular animal protein in the country, Guardian reported.
A 26-storey apartment-style building- by far the biggest pig farm in the world, with a capacity to slaughter 1.2 million pigs a year has been built on the southern outskirts of Ezhou, a city in central China’s Hubei province, a report said.
The ‘pig skyscraper’ has been made to meet China's demand for pork, the most popular animal protein in the country, Guardian reported. The new skyscraper-sized farm began production at the start of October when the company behind the facility – Hubei Zhongxin Kaiwei Modern Farming – admitted its first 3,700 sows into the farm.
The company has said that it originally planned to invest in ready-to-cook food production, but that it changed its mind. Jin Lin, the general manager of the company, has said that the company saw modern agriculture as a promising sector and an opportunity to use its own construction materials to build the pig farm.
The pig farm has two buildings and behind the operational site, an identical-looking building of equal scale is nearing completion. When fully running, they will provide a combined area of 800,000 square metres of space, with the capacity for 650,000 animals.
The 4 billion yuan (£473m) farm has gas, temperature and ventilation-controlled conditions, with animals fed through more than 30,000 automatic feeding spots.
However, experts said large-scale intensive farms increased the likelihood of ever-bigger disease outbreaks.
“Intensive facilities can reduce interactions between domesticated and wild animals and their diseases, but if a disease does get inside they can break out between animals like wildfire,” Matthew Hayek, an assistant professor in environmental studies at New York University told the Guardian.