German Landrace

The German Landrace originated, roughly, in the year 1900 in northwest Germany, and was especially popular in Lower Saxony in the years after its inception. Existing native swine supplied the original seed stock, and improvement was made by farmer breeders through careful selection. During the years of 1948-1958, there were imports of Danish and Dutch Landrace that were used to further improve the breed. German Landrace appear much like the Landrace of other nations, especially those from which the imported stock originated. They have been bred for meatiness and lean/fat ratio, though are not as large in size or length as some of the Landrace strains of other nations. Their coat and skin are white, and their ears are heavy, with the characteristic Landrace droop. About 1000 head are exported each year to other countries.

Selection efforts have been especially directed toward excellent fertility, heavy milking and good mothering characteristics. There has been special attention, following weaning, to efficiency in feed conversion and to high cut-out values. German Landrace have proven very useful in crossbreeding and in improving the general performance of swine in Germany. This has lead to another breed of German Landrace being originated.

German Landrace B are quite similar to the strain not designated by the letter. They are, however, kept separate in the herdbook. The B strain was started in 1970 at Pfaiz, Rhineland, from imported Belgian Landrace with some intermingling of Dutch Landrace breeding. Representatives of the strain have wider backs and especially more developed hams than the more numerous Landrace of the country. This makes them especially useful for crossbreeding as they are, for all practical purposes, another strain of the Landrace that gives a broader genetic base to commercial production. The average observer would probably not be able to distinguish readily between the two strains of Landrace in Germany. However, the German farmers have found it very worthwhile to keep the strains separate so that hybrid vigour can be experienced when they are used properly in commercial production.

These two strains of Landrace and the Pietrain constitute practically all of the registered swine of Germany. Both strains of German Landrace are recorded by Die Arbeitsgemeinschaft Deutscher Schweineerzeuger (ADS), Adenauerallee 174, D-5300 Bonn, Germany.

The average mature weight of German Landrace sow is 450-600lbs (204-272kg), and the average weight of a mature boar is 500-700lbs (226-318kg). The average weight of the male at slaughter is 350-375lbs (160-170kg).