Industry Partners

Prairie Swine Centre is an affiliate of the University of Saskatchewan

Prairie Swine Centre is grateful for the assistance of the George Morris Centre in developing the economics portion of Pork Insight.

Financial support for the Enterprise Model Project and Pork Insight has been provided by:

Author(s): Peter Stougaard
Publication Date: January 1, 2003
Reference: Proceedings of the 2003 Manitoba Swine Seminar
Country: Canada


SKIOLD-Echberg, the biggest pig feeder provider in Europe, has designed alternatives to gestation stalls in response to welfare concerns. As of January 1st, 1999, it was law that all sows in Europe from weaning until 7 days prior to farrowing must be loose housed. In 1996 an improved ESF system was developed. To reduce labor inputs, this new system required no straw, slatted floors for dunging and solid for lying, and the possibility of separation of sows for farrowing/vaccination.

In Denmark, the average group size is 200 sows. For good production, the ESF system must provide an insulated building, individual feeding, slatted floor for dunging, and bedding for lying. Distance from lying to dunging area must be short, and the entrance to the feeder must be away from the dunging area and must be designed to minimize aggression. A depressed lying area ensures no plugging of the slats because the bedding will be more difficult to push around. A separation area (for vaccinations and such) as well as a training pen (to teach sows the routine) is beneficial. Because the food consumer is the ultimate customer, the swine industry needs to comply with their desires, and an ESF system should do just that.

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