Pigs were common in Iceland during the first centuries of settlement, mostly roaming free among other livestock. The Icelandic words for pigs are svín, gylta and göltur. Place names around the country are connected to pigs, such as Svínafell, Galtafell, and Galtalækur. This indicates the prevalence of pigs from the beginning of settlement in Iceland and many things point to the co-existence of pigs and humans. As the landscape changed with deforestation and a colder climate, pigs slowly disappeared. Still, pigs are believed to have been present in Iceland up until the 16th and even the 17th century. Pigs were again imported to Iceland in the late 19th century, but pig farming did not gain a foothold until the 1930’s.
There has been a decrease in the number of pig farms, but on the other hand, they have become larger and more technologically advanced.
The consumption of pork has multiplied and the demand for bacon far outweighs the supply, leading to large amounts being imported.