August 23, 2016                                                      

Hypor installs new feeding stations in Canada



New feeding stations were recently installed at Hypor's nucleus facility in Abernethy, Saskatchewan, Canada last month.


This first step of the project, executed in phases, was successful and went according to plan, Hypor said. The final step in this project, planned in August this year, is the installation of another 30 feeding stations at the nucleus facility. 


Hypor is growing the number of pigs it tests by 25% with the addition of several Pig Performance feeding stations. "By increasing our feeding stations, we will be able to collect more phenotypes and make faster genetic improvements for the whole swine industry," Hypor's director of research and development Abe Huisman commented.


The Nedap Pig Performance Test stations record the amount of feed intake and the weight of the animal each time the pig visits the feeder. "This is something new and exciting for the industry; traditionally, pigs are weighed only five times between birth and the end of the testing period," Huisman explained.


Data from the feeding stations shows the difference in daily feed intake and the daily weight gain of individual pigs and will advance the ability Hypor has to select pigs that meet the US and Canadian market demand for high feed efficiency later in the growing period.


"Feed costs account for 60% to 70% of the total cost of production," Huisman stated. "If we can make pigs a little more efficient, we will be able to help producers be more profitable."


Hypor will use the data from the feeding stations to determine at which point a pig's rate of daily gain slows down. "We want to select the pigs that are lean and efficient at the end of the growing period as well at the beginning to stay in-line with the markets," Huisman said.


North American slaughter weights have steadily increased over the past 20 years. To meet the market demand for lean, quality pork in heavier pigs, Hypor uses a real-time ultrasound device, versus a computed tomography (CT) scanner, to measure the marbling and muscle-to-fat ratio.


"The ultrasound device allows us to collect more data than we would using a CT scanner which is limited to use on pigs that weigh less than 100 kg," Hypor's North America general manager Luis Prieto said. "The average live weight of market pigs is around 132 kg."


Utilising technological advances is one more way Hypor is able to serve North American pork producers.


Hypor tests thousands of pigs in North America annually for individual feed intake, and provides two commercial sow lines and three boar lines for US and Canadian customers.


Hypor's Magnus, Maxter and Kanto boar lines are selected on the ability to maintain feed efficiency longer in the growing period as well as producing quality meat at heavier weights.