Aid to Calculate Cost of High-welfare Farrowing Systems03 September 2013
UK - Researchers at Newcastle University have developed a spreadsheet-based financial simulation model estimates the cost of pig production in five free-farrowing systems in comparison to standard sow housing in a farrowing crate.
In the journal, Livestock Science, Y.M. Seddon and colleagues at the University of Newcastle describe their work to develop a spreadsheet-based financial model for pig producers considering high-welfare farrowing systems.
The spreadsheet-based financial simulation model estimates the cost of pig production in five free-farrowing systems in comparison to standard sow housing in a farrowing crate. It was developed to address the recognised deficiency in financial information on free-farrowing systems, and assist pig producers in estimating the cost of producing pigs in such systems.
The model is available online at http://www.ncl.ac.uk/afrd/research/project/4378.
Users can select from eight different types of farrowing accommodation and four gestation housing systems, with additional variations on floor type and feeding system.
Input data on herd size and productivity are entered into one active sheet and, using built-in data on housing and other input costs, the model computes the cost of producing a weaner pig (8kg at four weeks of age) in each gestation/farrowing system combination selected.
Sensitivities to input or output changes can also be evaluated by altering herd performance.
The use of this model provides pig producers, policy-makers and other stakeholders with a means to estimate the likely cost of pig production prior to any investment in a new housing system, according to Seddon and colleagues. An example of the applications of the model is given in the paper.
Seddon Y.M., P.J. Cain, J.H. Guy and S.A. Edwards. 2013. Development of a spreadsheet based financial model for pig producers considering high welfare farrowing systems. Livestock Science. 5 August 2013 (10.1016/j.livsci.2013.07.003)
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