Data analysis in pig production has long been essential to making smart management decisions. Now as the industry moves to group sow housing, data is more important than ever. There is a common belief that you cannot track sows efficiently in open hog pen designs, but that is simply not the case. With the proper barn design and data management system in an open sow pen, you are able to track daily performance metrics much better than you could in a stall barn.
Although you are able to track sow performance much better in group sow housing barn, it takes a well-engineered hog pen design and data collection platform. With the proper system, such as the Velos platform used by Nedap, data really is money. You are able to catch performance issues earlier, and you are able to fine tune your operations to be as efficient as possible, saving you on feed and labor, as well as other operating costs.
Track the History of Each Animal in Open Sow Housing
A complete barn tracking and management system allows you to track the complete history of a sow from her first day as a gilt through her whole life as a productive sow. Data is collected automatically through feed stations, sow weight scales, heat detection units, farrowing crate feeding, breeding stall feeding and other identification systems, allowing you to study each sow's progress and performance. This allows you to identify the expenses of each area in the barn and directly associate those expenses with sow performance.
Such detailed data assists you in making more educated adjustments. You are able to calculate specific feed rations based on data rather than best guesses. With the addition of scales, crate and stall feeding and heat detection units, you are also able to identify the status of each sow with minimal additional work requirements on your barn staff.
Identify and Treat Sick Pigs
Collecting daily data on your sows allows you to identify poor performance trends that could be stemming from the onset of health issues. You will be able to identify and treat your sick animals before you see a large performance dip.
Simply program the management system to alert you when it detects a lack of sow weight gain, feed consumption or other performance metrics, and you can treat the animal quickly. With Nedap's Electronic Sow Feeding stations, you are even able to program the system to separate the sows into a holding pen to make treatment easier. Automatically collecting daily sow weights and other performance metrics will help you make those decisions to improve your health ratio without manually collecting or entering any data.
Access Data Anywhere
In today's age, we need information quickly; waiting to look over daily results can cost you precious time and money. That is why it is important to have a barn management system that can be accessed from anywhere and from any device. Nedap's ESF system includes Velos software that can be accessed from any device with a web browser. It is a cloud based platform that allows you to track barn performance anytime anywhere. Additionally, the system will notify you of potential problems based on parameters you set so you don’t need to pore over reams of data to glean out what is important.
Your time is valuable; the time your staff spends in the barn is valuable. Nedap Velos, incorporated properly into a sow housing system, can be the most profitable investment you make in your barn. Without the ability to collect data, you’ll be left scratching your head while trying to decide how to get your barn to make money.