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Improved Loadout Design and Procedures Improve Transport Biosecurity

An Edmonton based veterinary consultant suggests, by improving the design of the loadout, pork producers can improve the biosecurity of their farms and reduce the risk of disease transmission.

"Practical Tips to Improve Your Load Out: The CWSHIN Loadout Project," was among the topics discussed last week as part of Saskatchewan Pork Industry Symposium 2023.

The loadout is the area of the barn where finisher pigs or cull sows or isoweans or sometimes deadstock are loaded onto the truck and sometimes animals will enter the barn through the loadout.

Dr. Julia Keenliside, an Edmonton based veterinary consultant, explains the Canada West Swine Health Intelligence Network loadout project was inspired by a large outbreak of PED in Manitoba in the spring of 2022 in an effort to assess transport biosecurity and included a literature review and a survey of veterinarians.

Quote-Dr. Julia Keenliside-Edmonton based veterinary consultant:

There's a huge diversity in loadout facilities being reported by these veterinarians.The most common facility they saw was simply a door at the end of the barn and the pigs were loaded up the ally, straight out the door up the ramp, outside and onto the truck.

That was the most common but they did report that there were heated enclosed ones and some of them were using the staged loadout procedures already.The other thing we found with the diversity is there's a wide range of procedures being done and some of the basic procedures that were recommended in a lot of the gray literature as well as in some of the scientific literature, such as changing your boots and coveralls, washing after every loadout.We found that those weren't commonly done on a wide range of operations.

It says to me that producers may be able improve their loadout biosecurity just by changing a few procedures to start.It may not mean rebuilding a whole loadout area.If we can improve procedures, it might be less costly to start.

Dr. Keenliside suggests key components when designing a loadout are, it has to be easy to load pigs through, it has to be easy for staff to work in and pigs have to move through it well.She says we have lots of research out there to show how to design facilities to move pigs and people should take that into account.

Source : Farmscape.ca

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