Thai pig farmer finds value in deep-litter housing

Supoj Singtosri

Supoj Singtosri, owner of Supoj’s Farm in Thailand’s Ratchaburi province, believes that natural pig farming and deep-litter system offer value to farmers and consumers. The system promotes pig health and stress-free pigs that can express their natural behavior, enhancing pork quality, writes PAYUNGSAK WIRIYABUNDITKUL.

Mr Supoj worked in other large pig farms for over 20 years before branching out on his own in 2006. These farms use cement-based flooring and had several problems including bad odor, flies, and wastewater. 

“These are the three major problems in industrial pig farming in the country, which negatively affect pig health and require antibiotic use,” he told Asian Agribiz.

Odor-free and fly-free

Mr Supoj thought deep-litter housing would solve these problems. The deep-bed flooring, comprising rice husk, mushroom, and coconut shell, allows fecal waste to be absorbed and rapidly broken down. This keeps the bedding odor-free and fly-free.

He also sprays fermented water and microorganisms on pigs and the bed flooring to reduce odor. Pigs also consume local microorganisms and fruit bio-extract to minimize unwanted odors.

In water-absorption areas, farmers do not need ‘deep’ bed flooring. In the central region where Ratchaburi is located, Mr Supoj does not dig. Each barn has 6-8 pigs, and each pig has 2-3sqm of space to move around. Parent stock have more space. Currently, he raises about 100 PS and 700-800 pigs.

Supoj’s Farm gives enough space to pigs, promoting better pig health.

“While cement-based flooring is easy to clean, it is unnatural for pigs. When they stand on these floors, their legs will suffer. They cannot dig and express their natural behavior, and they get stressed,” he said.

His system, said Mr Supoj, allows him to raise stress-free and antibiotic-free pigs that do not suffer from respiratory diseases.

“We give them enough space to ensure their health, thus improving meat quality and making it tender.”

Mr Supoj has set up a learning center in the province to teach this farming method. He also plans to hold online classes.

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Feeding pigs

Mr Supoj divides his feeding program into four stages, and all feeds are Salmonella-free. Piglets up to about a month-old need highly digestible and high protein feed. He gives them feed mixed with milk powder.

From 1-2 months old, the pigs are fed broken rice, rice bran, sbm, and baked beans, as they need more energy and protein.

From 2-4 months old, Mr Supoj reduces the amount of baked beans and sbm and increases the amount of broken rice and rice bran to reduce protein levels and increase energy in the feed formulation. This practice also decreases feed costs.

From 4-6 months, he further lowers the protein level by reducing the amount of sbm and increasing the amount of rice bran and broken rice.

“We also feed them fermented food such as banana stems mixed with sugar and salt, which will reduce the amount of regular feed by about 30% and save costs. This practice also improves the pig’s digestive system,” he said.

“Broken rice and rice bran provide more carbohydrates and pigs easily digest them. Other material like corn husks are hard to digest.”

The farm raises stress-free pigs that express their natural behavior.


Biosecurity remains the most effective tool in protecting pigs against diseases like ASF.

Mr Supoj limits the number of farm visitors. Those allowed in must not consume pork products at least one week before the visit.

He also disinfects vehicles and objects before entry, and prevents feed trucks from entering.

He admits they occasionally get FMD infections, but the spread is not severe.

Retail channels

Though Mr Supoj outsources the slaughtering of pigs, he does own a butchery and receives orders from clients via online and offline channels.

The farm produces 200-300kg of pork products monthly, including sun-dried pork, sausage, and Northern Thai sausage, which it sells in community and farmers markets in Ratchaburi. Apart from the province, it also sells frozen products under the brand G-Pork to many outlets in Bangkok such as hotels, restaurants, schools, and Lemon Farm supermarkets.

Supoj’s Farm targets health-conscious consumers, the elderly, working people, and those willing to pay more for quality products.

Among the farm’s products are sun-dried pork, sausage, and Northern Thai sausage.

Mr Supoj’s products are 30-40% more expensive than regular pork. For example, regular sirloin costs USD 5.6/kg, while G-Pork sirloin costs USD 7.7/kg.

However, “our pork is cheaper than free-range pork, and the products are affordable. Production is stable, and we can supply clients such as restaurants. Our business continues to grow,” he added.

When Thailand lifted Covid-19 restrictions, Mr Supoj said he received more orders from restaurants and hotels. These outlets want to differentiate themselves from the competition. They do so by sourcing pork and other meat from Supoj’s Farm and others that practice natural farming.

Based in Bangkok, Colombo, Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur, Manila


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