A young farmer has urged those affected by the current crisis impacting the pig sector to seek support from rural-based charities if they need to.
The video, released by the Farming Community Network (FCN), features sheep and cattle farmer Leighton Snelgrove.
He reminds everyone across agriculture that rural charities offer support during this difficult time for pig producers – and that no one is alone in dealing with the challenges.
Labour shortages and supply chain complications have caused significant issues across the pig industry, putting many pigs at risk of being culled.
In the video, Leighton Snelgrove, who is also an FCN volunteer said: “There’s a huge crisis occurring in the pig industry today.
"A lack of staff in abattoirs, a lack of HGV drivers, the post-CO2 problem and the cost of pork per kilo – it’s all having a huge impact on pig farmers and the wider industry.
"This is now resulting in pig farmers not choosing to – but having to – cull young, healthy pigs."
He added: “FCN is aware of the problem, and we want to reassure pig farmers and others that we are here to talk to, to reassure you, and to walk with you during this time.”
Jude McCann, FCN’s chief executive officer, added that the charity "is here to support everyone in the farm community".
"We recognise the particular pressures currently on our pig industry, food processors and poultry sector and the issues this is causing for farmers," she said.
"We are all part of the same agricultural community and none of us are alone in dealing with these issues.
"Our volunteers are farming people and they understand the unique pressures involved in agriculture. We’re here to help.”
Farmers, vets and other workers in the sector can contact FCN confidentially on 03000 111 999 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
It comes as rural charity RABI also extended its level of support to the pig industry by introducing access to in-person professional counselling support.
RABI corporate partnership manager, Suzy Deeley said: “The worsening situation and potential of on-farm culls has led to this in-person support being made available immediately.
"Developing bespoke, in-person counselling support to supplement existing services already available in some areas of the county, and ensuring this is available on-demand consistently across England and Wales, has been a focus for the charity.
"All those working in the pig sector can access this, along with any of our services, on our confidential 24-hour helpline, 0800 188 4444.”