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Gain Better Understanding of Conversion of Gestation Stalls

8 January 2013, at 8:02am

CANADA - What does that trend mean for pork producers today and how do they adapt? The 2013 Banff Pork Seminar brings in three speakers from the front-lines of key aspects of this issue in Breakout Session Number 7.

Few issues have cut across the pork industry like gestation stalls have, according to Meristem Land and Science. Several US states have joined the precedent of the European Union and instituted legislation to phase out the use of gestation stalls. Many large companies have followed suit, pledging to eliminate gestation stalls from their production systems over the next few years. And the issue has been on the forefront of animal care headlines for some time.

Tom Parsons of the University of Pennsylvania looks at the lessons learned from a decade of transitioning sow farms from stalls to pens. The experience shows it can be successful, he says, but requires renewed attention to many details, like stockman training.

University of Guelph researcher, Renee Bergeron, looks at what can be learned from sow welfare assessment systems in the EU, US and Canada.

Steve Pollmann, President for Murphy-Brown's Western Operations, which includes 150 company owned farms and 500 contract producer farmers, brings a grassroots producer perspective. He will speak on the challenges from an integrator perspective of management of sows housed in groups.

For more information on the 2013 Banff Pork Seminar, click here.