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): NCSU
Publication Date: January 1, 1995
Reference: Electronic document: www.ces.ncsu.edu/whpaper/Wqswine.html. Consulted in Sept. 1997.
Country: United States


Water quality is discussed in this document and the swine production activities are also presented in a water quality perspective. If the production activities are not well managed, water quality can be endangered. Well designed lagoons built with clay liners can serve for some anaerobic treatment under North Carolina conditions. However, old lagoons that don’t have a liner present a threat to surface and groundwater quality. Nitrate fund at concentration higher than 10 part per million (ppm also equal to 10 mg/L) in water present a health risk to people that drink it. In some Coastal Plain counties in North Carolina, a testing done on over 10 000 wells showed that as many as 10% of those wells had nitrate concentration higher than 10 ppm. Investigations are needed to determine if only the hog production can be accountable for those contamination as nitrate can come from other sources. A greater potential threat comes from the contamination of surface water as nitrate and other nutrients such as phosphorus leads to aquatic plants and algae development and can lead to eutrophication. As oxygen in the water is used by the plants and for the degradation of organic compounds from those plants, less oxygen is available to fishes and marine animals that can die. Proper manure management is needed and riparian buffers can also protect the streams and rivers by nutrients caption. The management of dead animals is also important as improper disposal can lead to groundwater contamination. In North Carolina wetlands constructions are being tested to verify their filtering capacities. Research is also being done in order to separate and collect nutrients from the manure before spreading and to use. The struvite is a salt that forms during the wastewater handling systems and could be used as a slow-release fertilizer. Swine production and water quality are two elements that can go together however important considerations have to be made such as a control animal density per watershed determined a complete study of this watershed and its nutrients sources (N and P) and also a good management of each farms. Comparison of the regulations of the Southeastern states is also.

The elements presented are interesting and give a good portrait of the swine production and its threat to water quality. Part of the solutions given have to be considered in their climatic situation as treatments in lagoon and in wetlands stops when the winter temperatures are low.

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