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Study: Benefits of Shifting Pork Production Inside

by 5m Editor
30 December 2009, at 11:04am

US - A study conducted by the University of Missouri (MU) found the historical transition from raising pigs outdoors to indoor housing has improved animal health.

This enhancement in pig health has translated to higher quality pork products for consumers, according to an MU veterinarian.

The university’s Commercial Agriculture Swine Focus Team looked at changes in the swine industry since 1945. Veterinarians discovered a significant decline in parasites affecting pigs as pork producers followed scientific advice and shifted to indoor systems.

During the 1940s, 55 per cent to 70 per cent of pigs were infected with lungworms and 78 per cent to 94 per cent carried kidney worms. Today, veterinarians say infections of these two parasites are rare.

Scientists also believe eliminating access to wildlife has reduced disease incidence in pigs. For example, trichinella once was fairly common in the US , but the only real potential for problems with this disease today is from eating wild game.

MU swine veterinarian Beth Young said many other pig diseases have significantly decreased or have been eradicated with the move to confined farrowing and feeding facilities. The list includes swine dysentery, atrophic rhinitis, actinobacillus, classic swine fever and pseudorabies.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on the diseases mentioned here by clicking here.