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Webinars, welfare and weaning in Pig Progress 10

The 10th edition of Pig Progress is now available in digital format. Between the covers of this edition, there is attention for what was discussed during dedicated webinars with swine experts from around the world, welfare and sustainability concerns in pig production, and the stressful process of weaning.

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A week full of swine webinars

Misset International’s Pig Progress editor, Vincent ter Beek, hosted a full 2 days of webinars aimed at informing, discussing and learning about advanced pig production, weaning and gut health. All webinars are available for viewing on-demand on the Pig Progress website. Read the review on pages 8-9.

The line-up, from left to right: Wouter de Bruin; Dr Linda Peeters, GD Animal Health; Vincent ter Beek, host; Bart Hillen, Dupont.
The line-up, from left to right: Wouter de Bruin; Dr Linda Peeters, GD Animal Health; Vincent ter Beek, host; Bart Hillen, Dupont.

Livestock events resume in China

While international meetings in the pig industry in the rest of the world came to a halt, most livestock shows held in China resumed in September and October with some events reporting a record number of visitors. The livestock industry is eager to seek solutions for a new era, correspondent Allen Shu reports on pages 10-11.

VIV Qingdao 2020 took place from 17 to 19 September where 352 exhibitors and 16,557 visitors filled the halls. - Photo: VNU
VIV Qingdao 2020 took place from 17 to 19 September where 352 exhibitors and 16,557 visitors filled the halls. - Photo: VNU

Column: Optimum stomach function

Weaning piglets is stressful – low feed intake and stress caused by the weaning process result in damage to the intestinal wall and compromise the immune response. On page 13, new columnist Francesc Molist from Schothorst Feed Research discusses ways to lower stomach pH, thereby optimising stomach function.

On-farm environmental mitigation strategies

Reducing the environmental impact of pig farming systems is a key sustainability challenge. Researchers at the UK’s Newcastle University evaluated the cost-effectiveness of several environmental abatement strategies related to pig housing and manure management. The university’s Dr Georgios Pexas tells more on pages 15 and on.

Inexpensive fibreglass wool is often used to insulate pig houses. While this is a good option, a study explored the performance of the more costly but more effective polyurethane boards. - Photo: Koos Groenewold
Inexpensive fibreglass wool is often used to insulate pig houses. While this is a good option, a study explored the performance of the more costly but more effective polyurethane boards. - Photo: Koos Groenewold

Pig welfare calls for broad approach

Welfare and sustainability concerns in pig production are increasingly important in the eyes of retailers, consumers and governments. Proper on-farm diagnostics are needed before a solution can be proposed, writes a group of Cargill experts. Pages 18-19

In gestating sows, a calm environment and increasing nutrient concentration with proper body condition management will reduce stress and limit aggression. - Photo: Ronald Hissink
In gestating sows, a calm environment and increasing nutrient concentration with proper body condition management will reduce stress and limit aggression. - Photo: Ronald Hissink

Interview: “China is urgent and important to us”

Earlier this year, Netherlands-based breeding company, Topigs Norsvin, appointed Villaume Kal as the new CEO. He aims to let the company grow in big countries where large integrators can be found. Senior reporter Kees van Dooren reports as from page 20.

“We want to play a firm role in the Chinese pig market, but in a responsible way,” says Villaume Kal. - Photo: Topigs Norsvin
“We want to play a firm role in the Chinese pig market, but in a responsible way,” says Villaume Kal. - Photo: Topigs Norsvin

A hot innovation disinfecting trucks

The EU PiG Innovation featured in this edition is the DrySist system, which effectively uses heat to disinfect trucks to improve biosecurity on swine farms. Correspondent Natalie Berkhout reports on page 23.

DrySist pumps hot air into the container of a truck until the air reaches 75°C. It remains at that temperature for 15 minutes. - Photo: OPP Group
DrySist pumps hot air into the container of a truck until the air reaches 75°C. It remains at that temperature for 15 minutes. - Photo: OPP Group

Welfare, environment key in innovative barn

Dutch pig farmer Ivo Bekkers, strongly believes in a modular barn with many welfare aspects. His innovative barn at ‘The Familievarken’ (The Family Pig) has a special feature: pig toilets. Anne-Marie van der Linden, journalist at Boerderij went on farm; her report can be read as from page 24 and on.

A large pen houses 4 farrowing sows at The Familievarken barn, which looks like an oversized yurt. - Photo: Henk Riswick
A large pen houses 4 farrowing sows at The Familievarken barn, which looks like an oversized yurt. - Photo: Henk Riswick

Influenza causing reproductive failure

The link between influenza and reproduction rates is more significant than one might think. As a result, better prevention against influenza improves sow herd performance, writes Julia Stadler, DVM, from the Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich, Germany. Page 28

The detection of the influenza virus on the udder skin of lactating sows is a good complementary method in diagnostics. - Photo: Dr Julia Stadler
The detection of the influenza virus on the udder skin of lactating sows is a good complementary method in diagnostics. - Photo: Dr Julia Stadler

Controlling piglets’ microbial environment

Cleaning and disinfection are necessary before a new batch of animals enters the building. Surfaces, however, do not remain sterile. What if beneficial bacteria were applied to building surfaces and equipment right after cleaning and disinfection? Julia Plateau-Gonthier of Lallemand Animal Nutrition explains on page 30 and further.

An artist’s impression of a biofilm of bacteria. - Photo: Shutterstock
An artist’s impression of a biofilm of bacteria. - Photo: Shutterstock

Probiotics and enteric pathogens in young pigs

Among mammals, the pig is one of the most immature species at birth. Challenges for young pigs are also plentiful, including having immature gut microbiota. As Jens Noesgaard Jørgensen explains on pages 32-33, nutrient intake and retention are important, not only for the survival of the young piglet but also for growth and later potential reproduction performance.

Dysbiosis and loose faeces are typically caused by E. coli bacteria. This image is an artist’s impression of the bacteria. - Photo: Chr. Hansen/Shutterstock
Dysbiosis and loose faeces are typically caused by E. coli bacteria. This image is an artist’s impression of the bacteria. - Photo: Chr. Hansen/Shutterstock

Canola meal in pig diets: Inroads around the world

Canola meal is high in protein and acreage of the crop has increased in Europe, Canada, Australia and the US. As a result, canola meal as a feed ingredient has made strong inroads into the diets of many livestock species, particularly pigs. Correspondent Treena Hein reports on pages 34-35.

According to the Canola Council of Canada, except for lysine, canola meal provides an amino acid balance that targets a pig’s required amino acid profile better than any other plant protein. - Photo: The Canola Council Of Canada
According to the Canola Council of Canada, except for lysine, canola meal provides an amino acid balance that targets a pig’s required amino acid profile better than any other plant protein. - Photo: The Canola Council Of Canada

The value of feed additives: An economic analysis

It is generally accepted that feed costs equate to 60% of a pig producer’s cost of production, but with feed additives, producers can do more with less feed. Is it possible to economically quantify the effect of feed additives on a farm? Columnist Dr Casey Bradley makes an analysis on pages 37 and further.

It is possible to find hidden value in feed additives, such as enzymes, which result in lower feed costs. These savings may be marginal or extremely valuable for producers. - Photo: Shutterstock
It is possible to find hidden value in feed additives, such as enzymes, which result in lower feed costs. These savings may be marginal or extremely valuable for producers. - Photo: Shutterstock

Column: Pain management for castration

In this column, Dr Monique Pairis-Garcia discusses pain in piglets as a result of castration. Three significant factors influence pain management: the lack of approved pain-relieving products that have been validated for efficacy; economic limitations and challenges associated with administering analgesic drugs to pigs; and deficient guidelines and training for veterinarians to develop protocols. Read her column on page 42.

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