May 5, 2017
By Gilbert VandenHeuvel
Cleanliness is the First Law of Health
The goal here is to keep the animals in your care productive and healthy to help your bottom line.
Exert from U of Guelph paper written by Tokach, Goodband, DeRouchey, Dritz and Nelssen. To read whole paper CLICK HERE. This section is on page 42.
The management style of All-In, All-Out greatly improves pig performance by decreasing horizontal transfer of disease from one group of pigs to the next. The main tool to stop the transfer of disease is cleaning with the primary of lowering the dose of infectious pathogens that can be transmitted from one group of pigs to the next. Enviromental contamination is an important contributor to bacterial and viral infections. For Example, Davies (1999) found that 27% of samples obtained from a fully slatted finishing floor just prior to placement of pigs were found to be positive for salmonella. Cargill and Banhaze (1998) found that cleaning barns between groups of pigs was the most important component of all-in, all-our production.
It has been well documented that animal performance is increased in ‘clean vs dirty’ environments. Pigs reared in a dirty environment had a 10% reduction in average daily gain and 18% reduction n feed intake. as compared with pigs reared in a clean environment.
Removale of visible organic matters removes 90% of the bacteria from the environment. Another 6 – 7% of the bacteria can be removed by disinfectants and fumigation an additional 1-2%. Drying is also an important part of the process. For example, PRRS can survive in water for up to 11 days but when dried, it dies quickly. (Pirtle and Beran, 1996)
The table below shows the influence of cleaning properly between batches of pigs and also a continuous flow facility. This study does not show Feed Conversion. F:C is much better with healthy pigs since the pig uses significant amount of energy fighting infections.
All-in, All-out All-in, All-out
Cleaned Not Cleaned Continuous Flow
Average Daily Gain, grams 658 619 610
Airborne Dust, mg/m3 1.80 2.31 2.51
Respirable Particles, mg/m3 0.201 0.265 0.29
Viable Bacteria, CFU x 103/m3 132 177 201
Gram positive Bacteria, CFU x 103/m3 82 109 122
Note: CFU= Colony Forming Units
Targets of a clean room:
To reduce the disease challenge to the herd
To improve animal health, welfare and pork safety
To increase the growth and efficiency of the herd
Cleaning tips we all need to hear again
Besides having a good power washer, there are several other steps to facilitate this washing process. (To read whole article CLICK HERE)
Soaking — Soaking surfaces before washing will cut down on the amount of time needed to do a more complete job. Soaking can be achieved by placing a sprinkler system in the rooms to be washed. When soaking a trailer, you may want to just wet the entire trailer first with a moderate amount of water, then start thorough washing at one end while other surfaces have more time to soak.
Detergents — Another excellent way to maximize cleaning and minimize time spent on the chore is to use special detergents to help break down manure and other organic matter. This is the equivalent of using soap to wash your hands. You can wash your hands with plain water, but it is much quicker to use soap.
Detergents are products used to reduce surface tension and suspend particles to facilitate cleaning. They can be acidic (good for protein removal) or alkaline (good for fats). Some commercial products contain both types.
Many operations forget the value of detergents, mainly because of the added expense. In reality, most products are worth the investment not only because they cut down on labor, but also because they maximize the cleaning process and can break down bacterial biofilms (slime), which can harbor bacteria.
Hot water — Hot water can also speed up the washing process. The one disadvantage of hot water is that it can produce steam and hamper visibility, particularly in winter. The goal is to have the water hot enough to facilitate cleaning without putting employees at risk. You will not be able to have the water hot enough to kill bacteria or viruses, as these high temperatures would cause skin burns. Studies have shown that the money used to heat the water will be saved in reduced labor.
Drying time. One of the challenges with most cleaning and disinfection programs is allowing ample time for extended drying. The purpose of this downtime/drying time is so that all moisture can evaporate from the building and all its surfaces.
Water is critical for the survival of all living organisms, including viruses and bacteria. Research in the poultry industry has shown that a 48-hour downtime can dramatically reduce the clostridial environmental contamination compared to 24 hours.
Ideally, downtime in the farrowing room would be 48 to 72 hours after cleaning and disinfection. Often, that’s impossible due to pig flow and limited space. To maximize drying time, consider these options:
Allow farrowing rooms to dry overnight before moving sows into the room. Turn on the room heaters to maximize drying.
If overnight is not possible, then try to use scrapers to remove all puddles of water as a means to speed up the drying process before moving sows into the room.
Two or three times a year, plan enough time for the rooms to completely dry in order to break disease cycles before moving animals in. This is especially helpful when dealing with significant health problems in the farrowing house.
Remember, this is not an all-or-none effect. Small intervention steps add up to a more productive system.
Drying is especially critical for livestock trailers, which have been implicated as a major risk for disease transmission. This is usually not the fault of the driver, but rather due to the high-risk areas these vehicles travel to and from.
At Dwyer Manufacturing we can provide you with an easy to clean plastic slat for your weaner and farrowing barn from MIK International.
More information can be found on our website HERE.
MIK has a large selection of flooring that works for conventional production or organic systems.
Options for goat and sheep production are also available.
To see the whole lineup of plastic slats and support equipment on the MIK site click HERE
For some fun power washer videos click below
Liquid feeding of pigs is nothing new. As a young lad one of my jobs was to mix water with chop in a 40 gallon barrel which was doled out to the sows. When my dad shipped cream, it was the skim milk that was mixed into it. Liquid feeding was more of tradition at that time than a science.
Liquid feeding works and it is estimated that 20% of Ontario pigs are finished using this method. Scientific research is showing us that there are five main advantages to liquid feeding.
- Improvement in nutrient conversion
- Increased flexibility and control in the feeding program
- Use of cost effective liquid co-products
- Reduced environmental impact
- Improved animal performance.
As with a dry feeding system, or a wet/dry system, controls need to be in place in order to maintain proper hygienic quality of the feed as well as the system. Economically it makes good sense, especially in today’s volatile markets for feed and product.
Do contact us. We are happy to provide up-to-date information about liquid feeding systems, comparing various systems, and conversions. Also, please see the Swine Liquid Feeding Association website at http://www.slfa.ca