Definition of farrow in US English:



  • 1A litter of pigs.

    • ‘Disposal costs were estimated for a swine production system that needs to dispose of 40,000 pounds/year or 110 lb. / day, as would be the case in a 300 sow farrow to finish operation with average death losses.’
    • ‘It is now like the old sow consuming its farrow.’
    • ‘It's what would once have been called a typical Iowa farm: They grow corn, soybeans, small grains, Sudan grass, and hay; raise a few hundred organic pigs a year, farrow to finish; and pasture 80 feeder cows.’
    • ‘She is the sow that eats her farrow, consuming her own children.’
    1. 1.1 An act of giving birth to a litter of pigs.


[with object]
  • (of a sow) give birth to (piglets)

    ‘the pig is one of a litter of nine farrowed in July’
    • ‘They assume weekly farrowing only in the larger three units, as the 150-sow unit could farrow only six to eight sows weekly.’
    • ‘In 1991, 15.8 pigs were farrowed per sow in the United States, whereas in 2001, 17.6 pigs were farrowed per sow, amounting to an 11% increase in efficiency.’
    • ‘The hogs are farrowed outdoors or in barns or hoop buildings with bedding.’
    • ‘They started farrowing hogs when they moved to the rented farm in 1991 and have a traditional farrow-to-finish setup.’
    • ‘However, when pigs are farrowed in crates and the sow's excrement is passed directly into a pit, the pigs may not receive an adequate supply of iron from this source.’


Old English fearh, færh ‘young pig’, of West Germanic origin, from an Indo-European root shared by Greek porkos and Latin porcus ‘pig’.