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Pig Progress 3: Focus on health and piglets

Health issues as well as piglet feeding have a strong focus in the 3rd edition of Pig Progress in 2018. The edition is now available in print and as digital magazine.

A few years ago, Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea (PED) was a major issue in North America and in 2017, the viral disease made a come-back in Manitoba, Canada. How did the Canadian province deal with the outbreak this time? Correspondent Harry Siemens reports on pages 24-25.

Difference between a litter affected by PEDv (L) and a healthy litter (R). Photo: John Carr
Difference between a litter affected by PEDv (L) and a healthy litter (R). Photo: John Carr

African Swine Fever in Poland

In the meantime, African Swine Fever is becoming a growing concern for swine producers in western Europe. The viral disease creeps up west bit by bit in Poland and it does not seem to be possible to control it. Prof Dr Zygmunt Pejsak, from the National Veterinary Research Institute in Poland, shares his latest insights with Pig Progress. Bottom line: swine producers in Western Europe had better made sure their biosecurity is top notch. Pages 14-16.

Health is also an important issue at farrowing. If the farrowing process is very quick and painless, this benefits the robustness of the litter. Dr Xavier Manteca and Dr Eva Mainau report about the use of meloxicam for sows during farrowing and report promising results. Pages 22-23.

Weight at weaning in piglets born to sows treated with oral meloxicam was observed to be 418 g higher than in the control group. Photo: Peter Roek
Weight at weaning in piglets born to sows treated with oral meloxicam was observed to be 418 g higher than in the control group. Photo: Peter Roek

Feeding for young piglets

Young piglets require usually that little extra bit. Adding probiotics to creep feed was found to have good effects later in life, as it was observed to be creating more robust piglets at weaning. Pages 26-27.

One way to help piglets overcome health challenges is through supplementing creep feed with additives such as probiotics. Photo: Chr.Hansen
One way to help piglets overcome health challenges is through supplementing creep feed with additives such as probiotics. Photo: Chr.Hansen

What can also be beneficial for piglets of young age – as well as for pigs of older age and even sows – is an isotonic drink. The product has been on the market for some while, for this edition Pig Progress asked wondered what ‘isotonic’ actually means. And how ‘enterocytes’ fit into this story. Pages 28-29.

Use of silage in pig diets

Two articles focus on the use of silage in pig feeds. In Germany, trials established that when silage is added to liquid finisher pig diets, the effects are no stress as well as lower feed costs. Correspondent Norman Dunn reports on pages 6-8.

In addition, the possibility of using fish silage in swine diets is being discussed by author Matthew Wedzerai. After all, there is plenty of side-catch in the fishing business. What if, very sustainably, this can be used for swine? Pages 30-31.

Cod coould be on the sources of fish silage for use in pigs. Photo: Dreamstime
Cod coould be on the sources of fish silage for use in pigs. Photo: Dreamstime

How to survive as pig farmer in Finland?

Our monthly farm visit takes you to northern areas – correspondent Chris McCullough took a look how Finnish pig farmer Mika Vuorinen keeps positive in times of adversity. After all, with the Russian border closed for swine farming, it isn’t always easy to get good prices. Pages 20-21.

Columns this month touch on extended research and the reduction of sow stall use. On page 13, John Gadd hopes that researchers can sometimes spend more attention to the long-term effects of certain treatments, while welfare columnist Dr Monique Pairis-Garcia observes some hesitation towards the transition to group housing for sows in the USA – she suggests a step by step approach. Page 34.

How pig production in China affects world prices

Last but definitely not least – Pig Progress takes a look in China’s pig business. As the country is so large in terms of pigs, we will do this in steps. More analyses are to follow in the course of the year. The first episode – on how global market prices are influenced by China these days – can be found on pages 10-11.

Developments in China's pig industery are occuring rapidly. This 9 storey pig near Guigang, Guangxi province, will be opened in April 2018. Photo: Henk Riswick
Developments in China's pig industery are occuring rapidly. This 9 storey pig near Guigang, Guangxi province, will be opened in April 2018. Photo: Henk Riswick

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