Data Pig®, a novel electronic recording system developed by Apiam Animal Health, will be at the forefront of protecting Australia’s $5 billion pork industry from potential decimation caused by dreaded incursions of exotic diseases such as African swine fever and foot- and-mouth disease.
Apiam’s team of swine veterinarians have spent four years and more than $1 million developing the technology and user-friendly delivery platform, which is being rolled out nationally.
“The success of eradicating diseases such as African swine fever, foot-and-mouth disease and the likes of Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome, if they were to land here, is intimately linked to the time lag from incursion to detection and then to identification,” Apiam’s managing director and veterinarian Chris Richards said.
“A proven and tested resource such as Data Pig, which works on-farm, hand in hand with producers backed up by their veterinarians, will initially be the canary in the coal mine and then first responder.”
Data Pig’s nationwide rollout will assist pork producers, in partnership with their veterinarians, to upscale record keeping, enhance antimicrobial stewardship, better monitor pig health and treatments in real-time and improve quality assurance and compliance.
Apiam project manager for Data Pig, Sam Weekes, who has been involved with the on-farm trials for the past year said that Data Pig’s user-friendly technology, including real-time visibility of treatment data, had already generated positive responses and early adoption by producers and piggery workers.
“While sometimes onerous manual recording and frequent personal interaction with veterinarians has been the traditional pathway to satisfying regulatory and veterinary requirements, Data Pig offers a refresh as a streamlined, remotely accessible electronic data recording system,” Dr Weekes said.
“Adopting Data Pig solves the dilemma posed by distance and isolation, while effectively bringing pork producers and their veterinarians closer together to work in a more controlled, precise virtual workplace to ensure compliance and improve health, productivity and profitability of pig herds.”