By Rob Hannam, CEO
Production limiting and highly infectious diseases continue to be a threat to the swine industry. In the US, Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea (PED) is of particular concern, and cases often rise in the spring. According to the Swine Health Information Center’s Disease Monitoring Report for May 2023, several states including South Dakota, Missouri, Nebraska and North Carolina had increased percentage of positive tests for PEDv.
Vehicle movements between farms and facilities are among the highest risk for spreading pathogens like PED and Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS). Tables published by Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine indicate that fomites such as trucks and other vehicles are the main mode of transmission of all the major swine diseases.
Truck and trailer disinfecting and stringent biosecurity measures for drivers, farm workers and visitors are crucial but are only part of the solution.
Live-haul trailers in particular are an extremely high-risk fomite in the industry. This is because they carry live animals which are the highest risk carriers of pathogens. The trailers are often heavily contaminated with manure, skin, hair, contaminated fodder and bedding. This makes livestock trailers an extremely high risk for pathogen contamination if they are not completely cleaned and disinfected between loads, a vital step that is often missed or carried out in haste and therefore ineffectively, due to time pressure. This creates a major risk for pathogen transfer.
For these reasons, truck and trailer disinfecting and stringent biosecurity measures for drivers, farm workers and visitors are crucial but are only part of the solution.
Strengthening transport biosecurity through real-time movement monitoring or track and trace is another important element.
Vehicles that do not have GPS logistics, such as livestock trailers, are impossible to track and trace without a device or monitor. In this case, portable GPS devices can be installed and used to automatically record movements on and off farm properties.
Whether vehicles are equipped with GPS or not, Farm Health Guardian improves transport biosecurity and reduces risk of disease transmission. Visit our website to learn more, or see our Transport Biosecurity info sheet.