BPEX blog

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Don’t lose £s at the final stage



The effort and resources that go into the finished pig should not be lost at the final stage.  Variation among pigs ready for slaughter can significantly affect financial returns.

Producers should look at a minimum of three months worth of abattoir grading information to help understand patterns of variation:
  • Overweight pigs
  • Underweight pigs
  • Out-of-probe-specification pigs.
  • % of pigs in the ‘optimum box’
Common reasons for variation include:

Nutrition and feed management

  • Incorrect diet specification
  •  Inconsistent diet ingredients for co-product and home mixers
  • Inadequate feeding space, depending on system
  •  Lack of clean, constantly accessible water (water intake ensures good feed intake) 
Environment
  • Poorly-maintained buildings
  • Below or above optimum stocking density which can lead to compromised growth 
Seasonal Effects
Year on year, there is a trend for probe and carcase weights to be lower during the warmer months and increase going into autumn

Health status

The better the health the more chance the pig has of achieving its genetic potential.

If producers have any concerns about their finisher pig production they should contact their vet, nutritionist or BPEX knowledge transfer manager for more information.

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