|Swine Nutrition and Management Farm|
The Swine Nutrition Research Farm was originally built as a farrow to finish operation that included an onsite feed mill capable of mixing desired research diets. In 2010 the Animal Science Department made a decision to retrofit the facility to entirely wean to finish adequate genetic uniformity to allow for more research opportunities. Currently, the farm purchases SEW commercial wean pigs on a 6 weeks rotation. Nursery trials are conducted and pigs can be held and raised at the farm to provide for various research needs. Pigs that are not reserved for further research trials will be sold as feeder pigs to local farmers or grown out to market. Pigs from this farm are also used for research trials conducted at several of our satellite swine research facilities.
To preserve herd health, the Swine Nutrition Farm observes and implements biosecurity measures to limit the risks of disease transmission into the farm. This requires everyone to shower in and shower out of the facility, visitors must have no less than 48 hours down time from their last pig contact before entering, visitors that have visited another country must have no less than 5 days down time before entry.
The feed mill has capabilities to mix small and larger batches of trial diets. However we still rely on our local CO-OPs for our commercial feed when pigs that are not on trial. Once pigs reach ideal market weight, 280 pounds, they are marketed through local marketing channels.
The primary focus of research at this farm is nutritional studies for all ages of pigs. There are many projects using this facility at any given time. Published research articles can be found at the Iowa Pork Industry Center’s web page or at the ISU Applied Swine Nutrition web page.