A series of on-farm demonstrations established across Canada has shown the benefits of regular on-farm audits of best management practices.
As part of a series of demonstration projects established on swine farms across Canada on behalf of the Prairie Swine Centre, CDPQ and Swine Innovation Porc participating pork producers instituted regular audits of their management practices.
Ken Engele, the Manager of Technology Transfer with the Prairie Swine Centre, says the intent was to measure the pork sector's adoption of best management practices that reduce the cost of production, enhance sustainability and reduce labor commitments.
Clip-Ken Engele-Prairie Swine Centre:
The activity assessed eight different areas, everything from biosecurity, personal protection, washing procedures to each phase of production from gestation through to finishing and then water management as well.Source : farmscape
What we generally found is, while a certain amount of variation exists within each category, producers are generally doing a good job of ensuring the best management practices are adopted in each one of those areas on farm.
What we also found is the challenge sometimes becomes the consistent implementation of best management practices over time.
What we found is over time, it may slip a little bit depending on the area and it's not until you go in your on farm measure that it gets you back on track.
A good example of that might be regularly adjusting nipple drinkers.
Everybody knows you need to do it but it's one of those things that can just get lost in the day to day activities of what goes on on the farm.
Regarding motivation, we're in an industry where margins are usually tight and I generally think we don't find any home runs on those day to day activities but, if we're doing what we think we're doing, in other words, if we pay that consistent attention to detail it really does pay big dividends for the producer in the end.