Taiwanese love their 1 ton pigs

I didn’t know what I was looking at when I first saw the picture in the newspaper this morning but Steven explained to me that this is the winning pig from the yearly Pig God contest held here in Taiwan. If you look closely you will see the ears and the snout. The grey line is decorative paint for the pig.

The winning pig this year is 896 kilos, or 1975 pounds. This is almost 1 ton. No, pigs are not naturally that large in Taiwan, they are force fed for this special event.

BBC Image of the 2003 winning pig
The 2003 winning pig, ©2003 BBC

This is both sad and funny at the same time. As you can see in the picture above these pigs are too fat to even walk. Their legs are these tiny stumps that stick out their side and don’t even touch the ground when the pig lies on its tummy. How does a pig get this big? They pen the pig up so that it cannot move for two years and force feed them.

The farmers have to roll the pig to the scales to weigh it to see which one wins. After a pig is weighed it then has its throat cut in front of everyone attending. This is a religious ceremony carried out by Hakkas here in Taiwan, an old religion that has 4 million followers.


10 responses to “Taiwanese love their 1 ton pigs

  1. This is a horrible contest and should be stopped. Pigs are known to be one of the most intelligent animal species, and they feel pain and suffering like us humans. Imagine being in the same spot for two years, eating when your not hungry, eating things that dont even taste nice like metal and sand. Pigs arnt ment to be this size. These poor animals grow to 4 times their normal size and cant even walk. Imagine how they must feel. It must take a while for the pig to bleed to death. It would suffer alot of pain. It’s wrong and needs to be stopped. When i see the pictures of the pigs it makes me so mad to think these people treat the pigs like trophys. They are just like the tickets to enter the competition. Seriously, cant they just make the carnival alot less bloody by making fake pigs made out of flowers and having a nice parade with them instead of this killing of these beautiful pigs. I know pigs are slaughtered anyway, they are used for food, but this is done in a humane way and the pigs dont have to suffer like these ones do. I dont think it’s funny either. It made me really mad when i read this and the writer said they thought it was funny.

  2. I still think it is sad and funny. I cannot judge someone else’s religious beliefs.

    Some people revere a man nailed to a cross, some people revere deities with multiple arms and some people revere overfed slaughtered pigs.

  3. Dave ( icuricub@hotmail.com )

    James – I find your comments interesting. Clearly you are the pig in this dialogue and I find you sad but funny. Sad because your lack of compassion allows you to find animal cruelty funny and funny because I would so like to see you force-fed to the point of morbid obesity, you stupid ignorant fuckwit.

    Keep your ill-educated and stupid comments to yourself. If religion is such a revered subject for you then I would like to religiously beat the crap out of you and by nature of that, you are duty bound to accept it.

    Why are we still breeding stupid, ignorant people like you? Enjoy your sad life – loser.

  4. Hi Dave,

    I really appreciate your personal attack on someone who is taking a stance of moral relativism. Obviously you feel that you are right and the thousands of people who practice the Hakka religious and cultural traditions are wrong.

    Seeing that I was not brought up in this culture, I can’t press my belief system on these people. I can say I wouldn’t do this, however I will not stop others from doing this.

    Finally I need to object to being called ignorant. I believe that someone who has such poor sentence structure and can only progress their argument by beating their chest like a gorilla and stating that they intend to impose physical violence for their beliefs is the truly ignorant person.

  5. Carly Tonner:

    So what….I think I’ve seen more people get so fat that they can’t walk, and are forced to ride around in Hover-Rounds

  6. Frederico

    Carly did you know that in many western countries including the UK and US pigs are killed “humanely” by throat cutting?

  7. Frederico

    Dave do you know that we in the west, leave our old people sitting or lying in their piss and shit for hours, because it is easier and cheaper than looking after them?
    Whereas on the whole the Hakkas cherish love and look after their aging parents even after it becomes what we in the west would consider “inconvenient” i.e. would cost us money, impinge on our social lives etc.

  8. Andrew from oz

    James your on the money. who are we to judge another person or their belief’s. its not a perfect world but thats what makes it perfect at the end of the day.

  9. Disgusting and undue cruelty which is an apparent religious belief. What is religion? I think an acute lack of common sense and morals is at the center of these competitions. Finally, to James , what would the world be like if everyone was as lacking in compassion as you?

    • @sarah – I find religious intolerance disgusting and a true sign of a lack of compassion. Do your homework, spend a few years with the people and then offer your comment.