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Improving Disease Protection Through Air Filtration

06 December 2012
Manitoba Pork Council

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CANADA - Research being conducted on behalf of the Canadian Swine Health Board is demonstrating the value of air filtration in helping to protect swine herds from the risk of infection from airborne viruses, writes Bruce Cochrane.

The Quebec based Swine Development Centre or CDPQ, in partnership with the Saskatchewan based Prairie Swine Centre, is coordinating five Canadian Swine Health Board projects involving veterinarians and engineers from across Canada, aimed at improving the protection of Canadian swine farms from disease through the use of air filtration.

Françis Pouliot, an agricultural engineer with CDPQ, says air filtration offers protection from the PRRS virus in particular but also against other airborne viruses such as mycoplasma and influenza.

Françis Pouliot-CDPQ

Since 2000 we've know that farms could be contaminated via the air so, in areas where we have a high concentration of pigs, air filtration is now seen as a tool to improve livestock biosecurity.

What we know is in areas where have a high concentration of pigs like we have in eastern Canada or in the US Midwest so we are talking about 320 dollars per sow per PRRS outbreak.

This represents a significant cost and one that threatens the survival of many companies, especially these days when the swine sector is being plagued by an economic health crisis.

The cost factor that we are working on is airborne contamination and our projects aim at preventing the entry of viruses into the buildings through the air and their escaping in the ventilated air when there is contamination.

Mr Pouliot says results of this work will be made available through the Canadian Swine Health Board web site as well as other web sites and anyone with specific questions should get in touch with either CDPQ or the Prairie Swine Centre.

ThePigSite News Desk

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