Conference paper Open Access

ALENTEJANO AND BÍSARO PIGS: TRADITION AND INNOVATION – THE TREASURE PROJECT

Charneca, Rui; Freitas, Amadeu; Martins, José; Neves, José; Elias, Miguel; Laranjo, Marta; Nunes, José

The Alentejano pig (AL) and the Bísaro pig (BI) are the two main autochthonous swine breeds of Portugal. Originated from different ancestors they have a similar history across the last century. One hundred years ago AL was the most common swine breed in Portugal, but in the second half of the 20th century both Portuguese pig breeds undertook a strong population decline that almost lead to their extinction. However, since the late 80’s of last century local breeds were rescued and their populations recovered over the last 30 years. Breeding recovering led to the protection of pork itself and dry products by European protections PDO’s and PGI’s. In the framework of TREASURE project, a study is in progress aiming to investigate the opportunity of a crossbreeding program involving both breeds with the goal to obtain new products with potential commercial interest and to improve the knowledge on the pure breeds and to protect them against future threats. This paper includes a revision about AL and BI breeds and presents some preliminary original data from Treasure project study.

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