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Most of the pigs – almost half of the total livestock – live in China, followed by the United States and Brazil. For Europe Spain and Germany are taking the lead, Nigeria on place 22 is the first African country in this ranking. Disappearing on this map are all Islamic countries of the Middle East and Northern Africa where pigs are considered ‘unclean’ and pork meat is not consumed for religious reasons.

Due to an increase in global demand for meat the total numbers are constantly rising, mostly in Asia and Africa, while pig numbers in Europe or North America grow slower or even stagnate. Not just numbers, also the way of pig husbandry has changed, to a very industrialised, meat production centred way of farming. Only few traditional forms of pig husbandry have survived in the industrialised world, such as organic pig farming, mostly linked to local markets.

Not so in the developing countries, where half of the pigs still lives in small-scale subsistence-driven production systems. Here the omnivorous pigs are much more that just a source of meat, they are also a recipient of feed, that otherwise would go to waste.


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Technical Notes

Territory size is proportionate to the number of pigs there in 2016.

Data sources
This map uses data by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)  (last accessed March 2018). (last accessed March 2018). We aim to map as complete data as possible and therefore estimate data for missing values. In some cases, missing data for very small territories is not used in the cartogram and that area is therefore omitted in the map.

This map shows the distribution of all pig (livestock) and intends to cover all domestic animals irrespective of their age and the place or purpose of their breeding. Animal numbers include domestic pigs (Sus domestica) and domesticated wild boars (Sus scrofa). Excludes non-domesticated wild boars.

Further notes on the data, as well as all modifications to the original data source are noted in our data sheets.

Download data file

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