Disposal of Mortalities from Swine Production Sites

Publish Date: October 15, 2020

There is no best way to dispose of swine mortality carcasses. While some methods may work well for managing routine mortalities, the ability to scale them up to handle large numbers can be difficult. These methods may not adapt to times when catastrophic mortalities occur. The optimum system for any particular farm location is based on a number of criteria, including the current state of the protein/oil market, the biosecurity required, the distance to processing sites, the local public's perception, the government regulations that apply to that location, the environmental conditions, and the ability of the farm to carry out the different procedures. The death losses at a farm can be classified broadly as one of two types, routine or catastrophic. Routine mortalities represent a small proportion of herd and occur throughout the course of normal production. Catastrophic mortality events involve high death losses within a distinct period of time. These methods can also be used for catastrophic loses but the larger scale in a shorter time frame often increases process intensity. Additionally if losses are due to disease, they have a higher biosecurity risk.

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Composting Swine Mortality

Publish Date: April 13, 2012

Sound animal health and housing practices help to minimize mortality. However, there will always be a need to dispose of mortality. Rendering, composting, incineration, sanitary landfills, burial, and disposal pits are commonly available as options [1]. Composting is an attractive option because it is an environmentally friendly disposal method that captures the nutrient value of the mortality and organic amendments. Since composting usually takes place on the farm as the mortality occurs, the bio-security concerns associated with storing and transporting carcasses are greatly reduced. When properly managed, composting will generate few, if any, objectionable odors. However, as with any management practice, an understanding of the underlying principles, proper design, and proper management are required for successful results.

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