The Netherlands produces some 16.5 million tons of pig meat each year, making it the European Union's leading exporter. In 1999 there were officially 15.2 million pigs in the country, and 15.5 million people. Each pig requires 664 square metres of space, including that required for meat processing.
The Rotterdam architecture office MVRDV studied ways to streamline production in the intensive pig farming sector. Animal welfare and efficient land use were important factors in developing the concept. The result is Pig City: tall towers in which pigs spend their entire lives.