Water Footprint of pigs slaughtered in the northeast region of Rio Grande do Sul State, Brazil

Abstract This study estimated the water footprint of pigs slaughtered in the municipalities that participate in the Regional Council for the Development of Serra (Corede Serra, in Portuguese), located in the northeast region of Rio Grande do Sul State, in 2014. In order to determine the water footprint, we estimated the water consumed in the production of grains (corn and soybeans) used for animal feed, the water used for livestock watering, the water used for cleaning creation areas and the water consumed by animals during the growing and finishing phases. The total water footprint of slaughtered pigs was 0.19825 km3, the largest component of which was water used for the cultivation of grains (99.6%). The municipality of Nova Prata had the largest water footprint of Corede Serra (0.02343 km3 year1), followed by the municipalities of Paraí (0.02187 km3 year-1) and Serafina Corrêa (0.01658 km3 year-1). The municipalities of São Marcos (0.000006 km3 year-1), Bento Gonçalves (0,00002 km3 year-1) and Boa Vista do Sul (0.0004 km3 year-1) had the lowest water footprints, due to low corn productivity associated with the low number of hogs slaughtered. From this assessment, it was found that the management of water resources associated with pig chain production should include water used in the production of feed grain as well as the water used directly in animal husbandry.