caretaker and clip boardThe Pork Quality Assurance® Plus (PQA Plus®) on-farm education and certification program outlines Good Production Practices to help guide pork producers and their employees in the responsible use of antibiotics on the farm. Here’s a look at the Five Principles:

  • Principle 1: Take appropriate steps to decrease the need for the application of antibiotics.
  • Principle 2: Assess the advantages and disadvantages of all antibiotic use.
  • Principle 3: Use antibiotics only when they will provide measurable benefits.
  • Principle 4: Fully implement management practices for responsible use of animal-health products into daily operations.
  • Principle 5: Maintain a working veterinary-client-patient relationship.

10 Good Production Practices of PQA Plus

The PQA Plus program uses 10 Good Production Practices (GPPs). When implemented, GPPs will help ensure pork is free from chemical and physical hazards; that the pigs are raised in a caring, humane manner; that our natural resources are protected by pork producers; and that caretakers have a safe place to work. These 10 practices are based on Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point principles (HACCP). HACCP principles are the standard for controlling hazards in foods produced and processed in the United States and many foreign countries.

The 10 GPPs are:

GPP 1: Establish a Herd Health Management Plan
GPP 2: Correctly Store and Administer Animal Health Products
GPP 3: Ensure Safe, Wholesome Pork Products
GPP 4: Follow Proper Feed Processing and Feed Biosecurity Protocols
GPP 5: Provide Proper Care for the Pig
GPP 6: Provide Proper Care When Handling and Transporting the Pig
GPP 7: Protect Swine and Public Health
GPP 8: Maintain Proper Workplace Safety
GPP 9: Practice Good Environmental Stewardship
GPP 10: Participate in the Community

The National Pork Board has developed the following six guidelines to help producers, in consultation with a veterinarian, to use antibiotics responsibly:

Guideline 1: Use professional veterinary input as the basis for all antibiotic decision-making.

Guideline 2: Antibiotics should be used for prevention, control or treatment only when there is an appropriate clinical diagnosis or herd history to justify their use.

Guideline 3: Limit antibiotic use for prevention, control or treatment to ill or at-risk animals, treating the fewest animals indicated.

Guideline 4: Antibiotics that are important in treating infections in human or veterinary medicine should be used in animals only after careful review and reasonable justification.

Guideline 5: Mixing together injectable or water medications, including antibiotics, by producers is illegal.

Guideline 6: Minimize environmental exposure through proper handling and disposal of all animal health products, including antibiotics.

Find out more about PQA Plus