New Swine Transport Trailer Design Guidelines Expected to Improve Cleanability, Safety, Animal Welfare

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Farmscape for November 15, 2021

Full Interview 9:52 Listen

New swine transport trailer design guidelines under development by the Prairie Swine Center are expected to help improve the cleanability, safety and animal welfare aspects of equipment used to transport pigs. As part of a multidisciplinary research effort being undertaken in partnership with Swine Innovation Porc to reduce the cost and speed up the washing and disinfecting of swine transport trailers, the Prairie Swine Centre is developing new swine transport trailer design guidelines. Dr. Bernardo Predicala, a Research Scientist Engineering with the Prairie Swine Centre, says there are three main trailer types in use, double deck pot belly trailers, straight deck trailers which can have two to four decks and hydraulic lift trailers but there are multiple designs and configurations.

Clip-Dr. Bernardo Predicala-Prairie Swine Centre:
So far, we’ve developed the design criteria which lists the different features or specifications they should look for in terms of cleanability, safety and animal welfare and we are currently in the process of validating this design criteria. So far, we have inspected six trailers representing the pot belly, straight deck trailers and we were also able to inspect the hydraulic lift trailers and we’re looking to inspect more trailers to validate the design criteria. Based on the outcome of this validation step we’re refining the design criteria checklist. We are in the process of developing an electronic app which will help facilitate the implementation of the validated design criteria. After that we will continue to develop a scale which will be calculated in the app to allow us to see whether a particular trailer design will rate either high or low in terms of the cleanability, safety and animal welfare aspects.

Dr. Predicala expects pig producers and truckers who transport pigs regularly, trailer manufacturers and inspectors and regulators to be the main users of the information generated from this project.

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