“Our traditional, indigenous species, such as the Mangalitsa, are of key importance with regard to landscape protection; they form part of the Hungarian landscape, folk traditions are linked to them and they are part of our national identity and symbols of Hungary”, the Ministry of Agriculture’s Parliamentary State Secretary István Nagy said in his opening speech at the 10th Budapest Mangalitsa Festival.

“Preserving these species in their original condition as national treasures is in the national interest and a duty of the state”, he added.

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Mr. Nagy declared that the situation of most protected autochthonous and endangered agricultural species is now stable. “The Government continues to seek the further increase of autochthonous stocks, to maintain the high quality of gene conservation, and to ensure that the products and services produced from these species find a place on foreign and domestic markets”, he added.

The Parliamentary State Secretary stressed that the Government is paying particular attention to supporting the pig farming sector, and although EU regulations greatly restrict the funding that can be provided within a national sphere of competence, the Ministry has realised several important measures in recent years.

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Mr. Nagy mentioned the “More Jobs in Agriculture” Programme launched in 2015, within the framework of which animal welfare subsidies for fattening pigs have increased continuously thanks to the additional funding provided, and the introduction of animal welfare subsidies for sows.

With regard to the Pig Strategy launched in 2012, Mr. Nagy said that amongst others, pork processing enterprises had received development funding within the framework of the Strategy, in addition to which comprehensive research and development programmes and extensive marketing programmes had been launched on both domestic and foreign markets to promote Hungarian pork, and especially Mangalitsa products.

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When cooperation began between the Ministry and the Hungarian Association of Mangalitsa Farmers, 180 farms were involved in breeding Mangalitsa pigs, with a total of 7500 sows; today there are some 250 Mangalitsa farms operating in Hungary and sow stocks are approaching 10 thousand. The monitored sows produce around 60 thousand fattening pigs every year, and Mangalitsa farming provides a dependable living for farmers.

(Ministry of Agriculture Press Office)