Swine Barn Analysis: Finishing pig closeout performance improves

Swine Barn Analysis: Finishing pig closeout performance improves

*Dr. Tom Stein is chief innovations officer, executive chairman and chairman of the board of directors at MetaFarms, which provides software systems to help farmers better manage livestock data.

STARTING with this issue, I will be reporting closeout performance for nursery, finishing and wean-to-finish groups and showing how it compares with the same period a year ago.

Data come from pork producers using the MetaFarms software system and represent more than 500 pork production companies in the U.S. and Canada. The data were scrubbed and made anonymous to protect the confidentiality of the software users.

For the third quarter of 2013, nursery growth and conversion performance — average daily gain (ADG), feed conversion ratio (FCR), average daily feed intake (ADFI) and days on feed (DOF) — showed no change from a year ago (Table). However, nursery mortality was up 10.4% in relative terms, or 0.25% in absolute numbers. Perhaps this reflects the effects of porcine epidemic diarrhea disease virus?

Growth performance in finishing closeouts was up significantly in 2013. In the third quarter, the average finishing pig needed 16 lb. less feed to reach market weight, grew 4.3% faster, converted 3.7% better and needed four fewer days to market. This was in the face of a not insignificant increase of 2.4% (relative) in finishing mortality.

Wean-to-finish closeout performance was in between nursery and finishing results. The average pig in wean-to-finish barns grew 2.2% faster, converted 2.4% better and needed about two fewer days to market.

Mortality followed the same pattern and was up slightly, but keep in mind that wean-to-finish mortality should be compared with the combined nursery and finishing mortality numbers. The relevant comparison is 6.69% in wean-to-finish barns versus 7.04% in standard nursery finishing systems, i.e., pigs move from a nursery site to a finishing site. That's 5% less mortality (relatively) in wean-to-finish barns than the typical nursery finishing system.

I've seen the same relationship in other benchmarking analyses over the past three years. Maybe there's something protective about placing pigs in wean-to-finish barns compared with nursery move-to-finishing systems.

 

Closeout performance

 

-Q3-

 

%

Nursery

2012

2013

change

Closeouts

1,459

1,444

 

Total pigs started

2,492,956

2,845,430

 

Avg. initial weight, lb.

12.8

12.8

 

Mortality, %

2.49

2.75

10.4

Avg. out weight, lb.

55.1

55.4

 

Total feed, lb./head

68.2

68.0

 

ADG, lb./day

0.85

0.85

 

FCR

1.63

1.61

 

ADFI, lb./day

1.39

1.38

 

Avg. DOF

49.1

49.3

 

Finishing

Closeouts

1,578

1,882

 

Total pigs started

3,062,429

3,345,426

 

Avg. initial weight, lb.

53.2

53.0

 

Mortality, %

4.19

4.29

2.4

Avg. out weight, lb.

267.0

269.1

 

Total feed, lb./head

622.3

605.9

-2.6

ADG, lb./day

1.70

1.77

4.3

FCR

2.94

2.84

-3.7

ADFI, lb./day

5.00

5.02

 

Avg. DOF

124.3

120.4

-3.1

Days to first market sale

108.7

104.7

-3.6

Wean-to-finish

Closeouts

283

396

 

Total pigs started

594,430

913,662

 

Avg. initial weight, lb.

13.2

13.3

 

Mortality, %

6.55

6.69

2.0

Avg. out weight, lb.

265.8

268.6

1.1

Total feed, lb./head

670.7

661.8

-1.3

ADG, lb.

1.50

1.54

2.2

FCR

2.67

2.60

-2.4

ADFI, lb.

4.01

3.99

 

Avg. DOF

167.2

165.4

-1.0

Days to first market sale

153.1

152.2

-0.6

 

Volume:85 Issue:48

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