|Pigs and more pigs|
No sleeping in, even on Saturdays as we today arose extra early to make the drive to Molepolole and the largest of the farms we’ve seen so far. After not quite as many hours of sleep as we would have liked and a long drive, we arrived to a closed gate. Apparently the owner had forgotten about us! Without cellphone service we waited calmly outside the gate until someone from the staff could confirm that yes, we are in fact the group of students from Cornell escorted by the Ministry of Agriculture, here to see your farm!
|Automatic feeding and ventilation, impressive|
The opening of those gates led to awe, at least for me. This was no simple farm. This farm has made some serious investments into Chinese technology which we would later learn was set up with the help of two Chinese engineers who had come on site. With over 100 sow units and sows contained in stalls with no chance of turning around, this was an efficient operation. As an animal rights advocate and a vegetarian, I knew coming into a project about pork production I would be faced with some uncomfortable truths, however this was the first time I had seen pigs contained in this way in Botswana. Our visits to farms up to this point had been small in size, operation, low technological inputs, as well as generally more traditional with open air pens. This was an entirely different story.
|Playful and young, separated by gender|
The very competent farm manager showed us around and diligently answered every question.
|Pig feed, by age of pig delivered by local Botswana brand|