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New and alternative sanitization procedures for antibiotic-free swine barns

Certain barns that switched to antibiotic-free production observed increased prevalence of pathogens after a few years on the program. Developing improved sanitization and disinfection procedures is an important step to reduce the pathogen load in antibiotic-free barns, which was the goal of this study.

This project identified and screened various disinfection strategies comprised of conventional and non-conventional disinfection measures. The screening phase determined calcium oxide, peracetic acid (PAA), quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs), electrolyzed water (SAEW) and alkaline electrolyzed water (AW), and silver nanoparticles as the most promising alternative measures. During laboratory-scale evaluations, the application of SAEW and PAA were identified as the most promising disinfection strategies, which were investigated further in in-barn tests.

The performance of PAA and SAEW was comparable to conventional disinfectants (Virkon) and showed longer effectivity than Virkon at 4 to 24 hours after its application. Economic analysis showed that SAEW reduced the overall cost of disinfectant used per pig while PAA costs a bit more than conventional disinfectants. This study indicates that SAEW and PAA solutions could be a better alternative to conventional disinfectants.

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