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New Tool Being Developed to Help Pork Producers Assess the Economics of Animal Welfare Practices
Dr. Yolande Seddon - Western College of Veterinary Medicine

Farmscape for April 19, 2024

A new tool being developed by the Western College of Veterinary Medicine will help pork producers and veterinarians assess the economics of their animal welfare practices.
The Western College of Veterinary Medicine is conducting a study under which pork producers and veterinarians are being interviewed about management decisions that influence animal welfare and how that relates to business sustainability.
Dr. Yolande Seddon, an Associate Professor Swine Welfare and Behavior with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and the NSERC Industrial Research Chair in Swine Welfare, says information gathered through this survey will be used to create a tool to support decision making related to animal welfare.

Quote-Dr. Yolande Seddon-Western College of Veterinary Medicine:
What prompted this work was to help the global swine industry review the bigger picture on interactions between animal welfare, environmental emissions and business sustainability and profitability and market access and how they fit together in a business sustainability model.
The outcome of this work is that we aim to produce a tool that will support on farm decision making surrounding decisions that will influence animal welfare but also with the knowledge of how it interacts with business profitability and environmental emissions and therefor overall business sustainability goals that could influence market access.
What prompted this work was that there have been increased calls for the swine industry to respond to animal welfare challenges and to make improvements, some of which are resulting in major facility changes as we can see with, for example, the conversion to group sow housing.
At the same time there will be, if there is not already, increasing pressure regarding environmental standards that must be met.
And we continue to have market pressures which drive the need for efficiency and different market channels.

Dr. Seddon says many factors are at play and it isn't necessarily broadly considered or understood how animal welfare and environmental factors are interacting with the overall business sustainability model.
For more visit Farmscape.Ca.
Bruce Cochrane.

       *Farmscape is produced on behalf of North America’s pork producers

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