Stephen Thompson

Stephen Thompson

Sheffield, South Yorkshire

Pigs (indoor)

PIGS, SOUTH YORKSHIRE: Stephen and his wife Karen farm 220 indoor sows and 200 acres (81 hectares) of crops to make their own animal feed. The farm produces 2,500 Duroc pigs annually, reared from piglets up to five-and-a-half months old and then sold for meat. The males (boars) are sold to a large meat processor and the females (gilts) go through Stephen’s butchery. His pork, bacon and sausages are sold locally to restaurants, hotels, cafes and farmers’ markets.

In many commercial indoor systems, like Stephen's, the sows give birth in farrowing crates. This prevents them from lying on their piglets. They spend about a month in these pens; until the piglets are weaned at 26 days old and the mother is mixed back into loose pens with the other sows. After 5 days, she will come on heat again and will be artificially inseminated by the farmer. A sow is pregnant for three months, three weeks and three days. On average, Stephen's sows have 2.3 litters a year each.

Stephen is a fourth generation farmer and his family have farmed in the Moss Valley for 100 years.

Contact Stephen

Stephen likes restaurants, dining, theatre and amateur dramatics. He stores sets, scenery and costumes on the farm for his local theatre group. Next to the pig sheds, behind a black door marked Number 10, there is a fine collection of straw boaters and silk dresses.