In the frankenhalle, fence after fence is closely lined up. Straw lies on the floor. On it the selected breeding pigs have made themselves comfortable. They were brought by their keepers to the christmas market of the producers’ and breeders’ association (EGZH) in dettelbach to be exhibited and sold. "The suppliers come from all over france", says georg winterstein, member of the advisory board of the EGZH and chairman of the lower frankonia pig breeders’ association.
In the center of interest are 14 pietraineber, which should be brought to the traditional auction to the man. "The pietraineber is the standard father of all german fattening pigs", erlautern winterstein.
The breed with pink skin and black spots is mainly used for meat production. The animals are not only very efficient and very productive in terms of meat production, but above all they are particularly stress-resistant. "They have the best facilities for breeding. From the genetic point of view, the watery schnitzel is history", notes the graduate agricultural engineer from dettelbach.
Winterstein himself does not offer any pietraineber at the auction, instead he presents two of his breeding sows to the expert audience. "A cross between a german landrace and a german noble pig", he says. Also a standard breed in pig breeding today. Winterstein appreciates them because they are very robust. "They also have very good mothering qualities and are very caring animals", he emphasizes. And like the pietraineber stress resistant, which benefits the quality of meat.
Recently, the interest in the auction has declined sharply. "The auction is increasingly taking a back seat. No auction planned for next year", reports the farmer.
Nevertheless, the christmas market will continue to be held in the franconian hall, because the exhibition offers an information platform for everyone involved in pig breeding and pig farming. "Markets are becoming increasingly rare", he describes the current trend in the industry.
This is essentially for structural reasons, explains wolfram rapps from the office for food, agriculture, and forestry in wurzburg. On the one hand, fewer boars are needed for breeding today than 15 years ago due to insemination stations. "The second reason is hygiene requirements", says rapps. Large farms, in particular, are no longer willing to take the risk of buying their expensive breeding animals on the market.
"We are not talking about any epidemics, but about simple illnesses such as the flu", adds the official who helped initiate the first christmas market more than 15 years ago.
That’s why pig farmers get the few animals they need directly from the breeder on the farm.
25 exhibitors from the pig production sector set up their stands at the christmas market, including the office for food, agriculture and forestry from wurzburg. Wolfram rapps is head of department at the pig breeding and husbandry office’s technical center. He is the official contact for all questions relating to pig production. "The technical center and its alliance partners accompany each individual production step all the way to the consumer,", he says.