Over the last few years, one of our sections has seen a surge in entries and has become somewhat of a fan favourite amongst competitors and visitors alike. Supercharged by a flurry of new syndicates, our Pig Section has gone from strength-to-strength and draws vaster crowds each year. Last year, we welcomed Ken from the Topp Twins, a record number of entries and some seriously questionable uniforms to the mix. We caught up with Ben Newton of the Fedora Boar Importers, proud winners of a blue ribbon last year, and Sean Spencer, of the Great White Boar Breeders, on what they love about Showtime.
Fedora Boar importers
How many of you are involved in the Fedora Boar Importers?
There is 12 of us! Myself, Duncan, Fergus, Hamish, Jack, Matthew, Reuben, Simon, Thomas, Tom, Wille & Ben.
How long have you guys been involved with the Show?
I’ve been coming for 10 years, but this will be the third year that the FBI exhibit.
What made you decide to get involved in the Pig Section?
It was the second year that the Boar Breeders Association had got started and a few of us were watching the judging. It looked like a lot of fun and a good way to get amongst the Show, so we decided to form a syndicate and get into it….How hard could it be, right?!
When do you and the team have to start getting your game plan together?
We start prepping in July/August. Making sure we are organised and prepped early takes away a lot of the stress, and makes time for a lot more fun during the Show!
Do any of the syndicate’s family get involved too?
Quite a few of us have relatives that compete in other sections or volunteer in some way. Duncan’s dad was even President of the Show in 2016.
What is your favourite thing about coming to the Show?
The social! It is a chance to catch up with a lot of people we likely haven’t seen since the last Show.
If you were going to give anything else at the Show a go, what would it be?
We think the Fedora Chicken Importers has a nice ring to it, who knows, we might have a crack at breeding chickens and entering them next year. Watch this space!
Great White Boar Breeders
How many of you are involved in the Great White Boar Breeders?
There are four of us, myself, Ryan, Andrew & Brendon.
When in the year do the Great White Boar Breeders start their campaign?
We start selecting the perfect pig in July.
What made you and the boys start exhibiting?
Boar breeding for the Christchurch show is a real climactic affair. Starting out selecting the ideal boar to take through to the Show, takes an eye for detail and a lot of late nights trawling through pig genealogy’s finding that perfect animal! Feeding the boar is no walk in the park either, these animals are the All Blacks of the pig world and it takes careful thought to ensure they are fed the right ratio of carbs to protein to ensure they are in top condition for pig week! The event itself is a real highlight on our social calendar as well. A real mix of all the “who’s who” in the pig world. In summary, it is a real test of one’s character.
What is your favourite thing about participating in the Show?
Everyone is chasing that top prize, and it makes for a really competitive event. You see where some of the past winners are now and you think wow, I want to be there someday.
What is the most challenging thing about exhibiting at the Show?
Handling the fame, if you’re not grounded, all the attention can really inflate one’s ego!
Fancy your chances in any other area of the Show?
I hope, in the future, to take the Great White Boar Breeders and apply what we have learned in the pig world to another animal section at the Show. Andrew has business interests in chickens, so who knows you might see Great White Chickens in the show in a few years time.
Any final comments?
Pig week just keeps getting bigger and better every year, so long may it continue.
Sounds like the Poultry Section better watch out! You can catch the guys, their blazers and liekly some strong moustache game in action again this year. See you there!