Farmers in China raising pigs in high-rise "hog hotels" up to 13 floors

Known as "hog hotels," European farmers have already experimented with raising pigs in two or three-story buildings, and many of those went (pork) belly up. But an agricultural company in China has recently started farming pigs in two separate 7-story buildings and has plans to start four new hog hotels, "including one with as many as 13 floors that will be the world's tallest building of its kind," according to Reuters.

The term "hog hotel" conjures up images of pampered pigs resting in plush beds and a tray of fresh slop being served to them in their room with a view when they're hungry. But of course that's not how it is. In the video above the hotel looks more like a cross between a cold medical institution and a prison.

According to the video's YouTube page:

Privately owned agricultural company Guangxi Yangxiang Co Ltd is already running two seven-floor sow breeding operations, and is putting up four more, two with as many as 13 floors, which will be the highest buildings of their kind globally…

Now, as China forges ahead with rapid industrialisation of the world's largest hog herd, high-rise housing is becoming a growing trend, despite its high cost.

Yangxiang will have 30,000 sows, compared with a more typical large one-level breeding farm of 10,000 sows.

Xue Shiwei, from Pipestone China, a farm management firm, said rampant disease in China's livestock sector is made even more risky with more animals under one roof. An on-site feed mill could further increase the spread of disease, he said. There is also concern that an outbreak of disease would lead to extensive culling.