How To Guarantee Animal Welfare In Pig Farms?

How To Guarantee Animal Welfare In Pig Farms?

Costa Rica. The people who participate in pig farming must invest and prioritize a good structuring of the farm to provide welfare to the pigs.

The conditions of the space, which range from hygiene to air conditioning, are essential to guarantee the quality production of the final product. Pork is one of the most consumed meats in the world, so it is essential to have good production practices.

To structure a pig farm, biosecurity is essential


According to Akemi Valencia, Director of the MSD Animal Health Pig Farming Unit in Central America, the Caribbean and Ecuador (CENCA EC), the basic principle of the structure of a pig farm that guarantees animal welfare is the choice of the place for the installation, since there must be a minimum distance between each one of them to avoid the spread of diseases. In addition, it is important that the space is equipped with facilities to protect the pigs and maintain the correct room temperature.

“Having a fence around it to prevent the entry of other animals, using biodigesters as an alternative for waste treatment, designing the facilities with their longitudinal axis so that the sun travels its daily trajectory and, at the time of construction, taking into account It counts the trajectory of the sun (East-West orientation)”, mentioned the swine production specialist from MSD Animal Health.

As pigs are animals that prefer environments with lower air temperatures and humidity, details such as the structure and height of the ceiling are essential to provide an adequate climate for the well-being of the herd.

“The roof receives solar radiation, therefore, the appropriate material will be one that has thermal resistance. The ideal height from floor to ceiling should be between 3.0 m and 3.5 m, because the further the animals are from the lower surface of the covering material, the lower the thermal load they receive”, advises Valencia.

pig farming

Pig farm facilities must be managed according to the production stage, since pigs have different physiological needs depending on their age, weight and, mainly, production stage.

To guarantee the welfare of the animals and the production of quality meat as a final product, the person responsible for raising the pigs must know the specific needs of each stage of production, mainly after lactation and weaning, that is, growth , development and fattening.

The needs, behavior and physical characteristics of the animals vary according to each phase and the management of the facilities by the pig farmer during each stage of production is crucial for the health of the animals and for obtaining satisfactory zootechnical indices.

“The control of the environment in intensive farming systems is of the utmost importance. It is important to provide the right conditions, both in management and in the facilities, climate control, nutrition and health at each stage of production,” said Akemi Valencia.

The specialist highlighted the importance of thermal comfort for the development of pigs and points out adaptations that she considers essential in the structure of a pig farm for greater animal comfort.

Keeping the environment clean, disinfected, dry and warm are the specialist’s first recommendations. The structural conditions of the farm are just as important as the nutrition of the pigs, which must also be adapted according to the stage of production.

In turn, Luis Diego Rojas, President of the Costa Rican Chamber of Pig Farmers (CAPORC), explains that in Costa Rican pig farming, adequate spaces are respected for the comfort of the animals according to their stage of life. The farms have biosecurity measures, a veterinary medical service, and specialized nutritionists who ensure that the pigs consume adequate diets based on their physiological requirements and needs.

“Costa Rican swine producers have invested in modernization, genetics, education and nutrition to the point that year after year we have been bringing our production parameters closer to those of Latin American powers. The producer associated with CAPORC is respectful of animal welfare, the environment and state regulations. The Costa Rican consumer can be sure that the pork produced in Costa Rica is of the highest quality, produced under the best biosafety, animal welfare and environmental commitment conditions”, mentioned Rojas.

Fountain. MSD Animal Health



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