Precision Sow Feeding Offers Range of Benefits

14 June 2016, at 12:00am

CANADA - Canarm Ag Systems says precision sow feeding promises to improve the productivity of the sow herd while lowering costs and reducing the environmental impact of pig production, writes Bruce Cochrane.

Canarm Ag Systems is on hand at World Pork Expo showcasing group sow housing options and precision sow feeding research being conducted in partnership with the University of Guelph.

Canarm Innovative Projects and Swine Products Manager Curtis Littlejohn says researchers are developing technology that will allow rations to be tailored for each individual sow.

Curtis Littlejohn-Canarm Ag Systems:

If we can adapt feed on almost a daily basis to the sow's growth potential, her need to rebuild after lactation, the number of embryos that she's trying to implant in het placenta and build up a good body cover for lactation, we can not only improve the productivity of the sow but we can also improve the longevity of the sow and the health of the sow and at the same time we have the potential to benefit the environment by reducing the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus that the sow produces that gets used as fertilizer on the ground.

We've done some preliminary research with a group of 140 gilts that has shown us that we can do a precision feed, we can meet the sow's nutrient requirements at the same time as reducing the cost of the feed.

The second part of the research is going to take those animals through second, third, fourth maybe even the fifth parity over the next couple of years and look at how we've managed to save costs, how we've improved the productivity and how those traits actually translate into savings for the producer, a better welfare environment for the pig and a better environment for country at large.

Littlejohn says a prototype has been designed and built and is now being tested.

He hopes to see the first commercial units available for sale within two to three years.

Sponsored content