Ted Janmaat has been operating a conventional 45 sow farrow-to-finish pig operation in Huron County since the mid 1980’s. The original fully slatted barn was built in 1986 with an addition of 48 gestation stalls in 1990. This past winter he decided to increase the sow herd from 45 to 100 sows and become certified to produce pigs for the organic market. In addition to renovating the original 36’ X 156’ barn, he is adding a new addition to accommodate the farrowing and weaning areas. . .
The original 48 gestation stalls, feed/water troughs, farrowing crates and slat floors were removed to allow the operation to be converted over to a straw based loose sow housing system. Some of the original stalls were kept for A.I. of sows. The organic certification requires 32 sq. ft. per sow bedded on straw along with access to the outdoors. The sows will be grouped in one of three 28’ X 30’ large pens with solid floors which slope down to the 8’ wide slatted dunging area at the back of the pens. Because of the space required for each sow and the size of each group, Ted was looking for a feeding system that would fit the current space and allow him to feed each sow individually. Two free access ESF feeding stalls (Gestal 3G from JYGA Technologies in Quebec) were installed in each of the 3 pens. The computerized feeding system allows the sow to enter and leave on its own. Currently the new gilts have just been introduced to the group housing pens and are being floor fed. The feed system is in place and just waiting for the final hook up and programing.
The original herd was on a 4-week batch farrowing system of 12 sows per group with pigs weaned at around 21 days. The new system will batch farrow 25-27 sows every 5.5 weeks, with a 28 day weaning age, and sows will be held in static groups with each pen housing one batch.
The renovation was tied in with Ted doing a de-population/re-population of the old herd/genetics and starting new. Breeding animals were shipped and the barn was emptied for 1 month at which time the barn was washed down and cleaned out. The slats were removed, the gutters filled in and the new solid floors and pen walls were poured. To improve cash flow the barn was renovated in sections so as to reduce the down time. The breeding area was completed first so that young replacement gilts could be housed and bred while the other renovations were being completed. Ted and his son did most of the labour so biosecurity was easier and the breeding area was closed to entry from outsiders.
Ted is now in the midst of building the new farrowing and weaning barn for the first batch of gilts, which will farrow this fall.
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Ted Janmaat has been operating a conventional 45 sow farrow-to-finish pig operation in Huron County since the mid 1980’s. The original fully slatted barn was built in 1986 with an addition of 48 gestation stalls in 1990. This past winter he decided to increase the sow herd from 45 to 100 sows and become […]Find Out More