The Danish meat industry has launched a staunch defence of the welfare standards employed in its pig production following C4’s Jamie Saves Our Bacon programme this week.

Oliver drew viewers’ attention to the use of sow stalls in Danish pigmeat production. The stalls, banned in the UK in 1999, are confined, barred areas in which sows are kept during pregnancy.

The Danish Bacon and Meat Council hit back at Oliver, claiming that in several areas the Danish pig industry has higher welfare standards than the UK.

DBMC claims that the vast majority of Danish producers will have stopped using sow stalls in advance of the EU’s eradication deadline of 2013.

Marketing director John Howard added that this year the Danes were introducing pain relief for the castration of piglets carried out to eliminate boar taint - a musty taste that sometimes occurs in pork.

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