News 1938 views last update:Feb 25, 2016

Pig unit ventilation problems and solutions

BPEX (the British Pig Executive) has highlighted the most commonly occurring problems with pig unit ventilation and helped identify ways to rectify them.

Over the past eighteen months, BPEX has worked with pig unit ventilation specialist, John Chambers, to help demonstrate how simple alterations can often significantly improve a herd’s health and wellbeing.

Over 300 businesses and farm sites took part in the project, which consisted of a mix of farm visits and workshop discussion sessions. Vets also participated and have subsequently been working with producers to make improvements. The top reoccurring issues were:
•    Incorrect size and position of fans and air inlets
•    Draughts
•    Poor and damaged insulation
•    Impact of adjacent buildings, internal fixtures and fittings on air flow
•    Incorrect settings of controllers
•    Poor maintenance
•    Poor operator practice

“There is a genuine thirst for knowledge and interest in ventilation systems,” notes Nigel Penlington, Environment Programme Manager at BPEX. “Producers are very keen to find out what can be achieved and recognise the level of importance.”

He adds that the project got the whole industry talking about this important topic. “The benefits are now being witnessed on many of the units, with regular reports of better performance and improved pig health.”

The project examined a variety of buildings, from century-old stone barns, converted sheds and recycled transport bodies to recent builds. It also looked at a range of ventilation systems from the simplest natural methods through ACNV to the high tech.

For further information and advice on pig unit ventilation

Pig Progress

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