Biosecurity is a mindset that farm managers maintain in order to prevent the introduction of new pathogens into a herd and to limit the spread of already established pathogens within a herd. Since each farm is different, there is no “one size fits all” biosecurity plan. However, several science-based best practices have been identified, such as controlled introduction of new stock onto a site, cleaning and disinfection of transport vehicles, all in all out production and the control of vectors, such as rodents.
Management plays a large role in how disease is expressed in a swine herd. Management can limit the transmission of disease within the farm as well as between farms. Proper nutrition, care, and reduction of stress can also impact the clinical course of a disease. Biosecurity is one of the most important management tools to prevent disease transmission and expression. The Pork Checkoff has certification programs of PQA Plus, TQA, and Youth PQA Plus programs that all have a biosecurity component to them.
Transportation of live pigs can potentially be a significant risk to herd health. All aspects of transportation, including the tractor/trailer, the truck wash and load-in and load-out procedures should be assessed for the biosecurity risk they pose to the farm. All producers should assess their farm and equipment and determine the best biosecurity plan. Areas of focus should include washing, disinfecting and drying procedures for trucks and trailers; downtime requirements for equipment and drivers; and driver access to downstream farms or packing plants. The Transportation Biosecurity Summit covered many of these areas of risk. Presentations are available to provide information on how to develop on-farm procedures to minimize the risk of disease introduction from transportation.
Links pertaining to biosecurity:
Biosecurity Resource Center
The Center is a data haven to enable government, commodity groups, veterinarians and producers to meet the challenges of animal health emergencies.
University of Nebraska- Lincoln Extension
The extension office has developed a guide on various risk factors that a swine facility can face and made a plan with the help of swine veterinarians to develop a biosecurity protocol for that risk.
The Center for Food Security and Public Health
This website from Iowa State University gives a wealth of information about various animal diseases. The link will take you to a page that discusses disinfectants. The information is about protocols when using disinfectants and cost-effective strategies to use on the farm.