How it all began
In 1971 the SPF-system was established in Denmark, and Lars Ellegaard, a breeder of conventional pigs, decides to rederivate his herd to SPF status. After a while, he receives an enquiry for SPF pigs from Novo Nordisk for insulin research. However, it turns out that the pigs grow too fast and are difficult to handle, so they request a minipig instead. Lars Ellegaard learns about the new minipig species developed in Göttingen, which is the smallest known minipig breed in Europe. He enters into an agreement with the University and starts importing Göttingen Minipigs for production and sales to the Scandinavian markets.
Collaboration with the University in Göttingen
With his growing understanding of the industry's demands, Lars Ellegaard creates a new business model, which raises the bar significantly regarding expectations to health status and breeding. He enters new negotiations with the university with the aim of separating commercial production from genetic management. In 1991-92 Lars Ellegaard obtains exclusive rights for global production, sale, and distribution of Göttingen Minipigs, while the university in Göttingen is in charge of genetic management. Hence, in 1993 the company Ellegaard Göttingen Minipigs is established.