To conduct zootechnical or productive studies PigCHAMP Pro Europa keeps a close collaboration with Swine Research Farm (CEP), a commercial farm especially designed to conduct experimental field trials under commercial conditions.
The zootechnical studies include studies of feeding and nutrition, genetics, facilities and equipments, handling, animal welfare, pollutant emissions (methane and ammonia) etc.
The main controls in this type of studies are:
- Productive performance: individual weighing of animals and feed intake (either individual or by pen) to calculate average daily gain, average daily feed intake and feed conversion ratio.
- Clinical signs: Daily record of clinical signs, therapeutic treatments applied, mortality (including cause of death and body weight), etc.
- Behaviour: assessment of aggressions (through the assessment of injuries and observation of aggressive interactions), assessment of the activity and resting of the animals, feeding behaviour (time dedicated to feed intake and relationship with the amount of feed consumed), etc.
- Digestibility: conduction of digestibility studies of different nutrients using inert markers (titanium oxide). In these studies pigs are housed individually.
- Body condition: assessment of body condition evolution, especially in reproductive sows, depending on subjective assessment (1-5 scale) and the backfat thickness (measured by ultrasounds).
- All type of samplings for later laboratorial analysis: blood, faeces, colostrum and milk, oral fluids, etc.
All these records and samplings are conducted following the Guidelines for good clinical practice (GCP). The statistical analysis of data and final report of the study are also conducted.