Genetic base

Genetic Base

The Danish pig breeding programme, DanAvl, is organised by the National Committee for Pig Production. At present there are 2 cooperative slaughterhouse companies in Denmark processing more than 28 million pigs annually of which approx. 90 per cent are exported.

The DanAvl breeding programme is responsible for the genetic improvement of the pork products and is therefore considered a very important part of the whole industry.

     DanAvl Licenced by

In carrying out the successful programme, DanAvl collaborates with 25 private breeders who own a total of 45 herds.

The aim of DanAvl is to improve the three breeds to obtain the best possible overall economy for the industry.

Selection in the DanAvl breeding herds is therefore based on results for performance, fertility as well as carcass traits.

DanAvl bases its genetic programme on the use of test results from more than 90,000 breeding pigs in the 45 nucleus herds and more than 5,100 AI candidate males evaluated annually at the central testing station.

3,100 elite AI boars located on 10 AI stations and app.150 multiplier herds also participate in the Danish Pig Breeding Programme and contribute to the rapid genetic progress and its distribution to the commercial herds.

Nucleus Herds

DanAvl collaborates with 45 nucleus herds owning a total purebred sow population of 8,600 sows. The DanAvl purebred population is free of the halothane stress gene. The distribution of sows is shown below:

Danish Landrace approximately 2800 sows

Danish Yorkshire approximately 2800 sows

Danish Duroc approximately 1900 sows

45 nucleus herds with the four breeds are approved by the National Committee for Pig Production.

The nucleus herds produce:

Purebred Males

Purebred Females


Great Grand Parents for Further genetic improvement

Great Grand Parents for further genetic improvement


Grand Parent boars for multiplier herds

Grand Parents for multiplier herds


Parent boars for production herds.


Parent boars for production herds, DanAvl LD and YD

Multiplier Herds

DanAVl collaborates with around 150 multiplier herds all approved for multiplication by the National Committee for Pig Production. The sow population in the multiplier herds is 53,500 sows.

The multiplier herds produce F1 hybrid-LY/YL gilts from Danish Landrace and Danish Yorkshire to be used as parent females in the production.

The structure of the DanAvl breeding programme is shown in the Diagram.