Showing pigs is a serious business.

Young farmers from around the country are joining the latest craze of entering pigs at the New Zealand Agricultural Show.

They are forming syndicates and buying pigs to fatten and enter in the show.

Entries are growing from just two pigs a few years ago to more than 50 at this month's show.

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The craze began when South Canterbury brothers James and Henry Pearce decided to enter a pig at the Canterbury show a few years ago, coming up against just one other pig, a kune kune, and coming away with the supreme champion pig ribbon.

Thomas Queen, of Omihi, north of Waipara, said the syndicate members enjoyed ''a good laugh'' and wore matching suits - but make no mistake, the pig competition was ultimately a pretty serious one.

''We are all here for a laugh, but when it comes to the nitty gritty we all take it pretty seriously.

''It's like playing rugby with your mates. Everyone wants to win and then you have a beer afterwards.''

He said it was the second time his syndicate had entered a pig, coming second-to-last at last year's show with a saddle-back pig.

''This year we came back with a vengeance and got a few ribbons, but there's still plenty to work on.''

Lincoln University students Roddy Crowley (left) and Joe Robins are hoping for big things from their pig Gingernuts. Photo / David Hill
Lincoln University students Roddy Crowley (left) and Joe Robins are hoping for big things from their pig Gingernuts. Photo / David Hill

Lincoln University students Roddy Crowley and Joe Robins have joined the pig-showing craze.

Mr Crowley said the pair only found out about the pig competition a few weeks before the show and bought a 5-month-old kune kune blue Russian-cross pig, Gingernuts, to enter.

''It's a great laugh. This is the first time we've entered, so we're just prospecting for next year.''

While Gingernuts failed to win any prizes, Mr Robins said they would be fattening the pig up for the 2019 show.

''I think he was a crowd favourite.

''We are definitely going to get a bit more serious about it next year.''

- Central Rural Life