Pig Farm Biosecurity Essentials | Ep. 5 Hog Raising FAQs Show

Pig Farm Biosecurity

Farm Biosecurity has played a central role to keep out emerging diseases like African Swine Fever (ASF) from entering our Pig farms. Learn the vital steps that can help you protect your pigs inside the farm.

Welcome to the Fifth Episode of the Hog Raising FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) Show. It is dedicated for hog raisers and future hog raisers who want to gain new knowledge in swine farming. Also, it answers questions or problems in hog raising.

In this Episode, Dr. Teng David will answer questions about Essential Farm Biosecurity Protocols. This will minimize mortalities and poor production in the farm.

Watch the replay of this week’s episode below.

About our Host

Dr. Oreste D. David is a Swine Veterinarian Expert with 20 years experience in hog raising. He is also the founder of Pinoy Hog Raising and Pinoy Pig Academy Facebook Communities and manages David Swine A.I. Center, Inc. and Viddavet Trading

Use the timestamps below to fast-forward to our top questions in the replay above.

  • 5:00 What is Biosecurity
  • 18:50 What is the Impact of Poor Biosecurity
  • 23:52 What are the Stages of Biosecurity
    • A) Segregation 24:00
    • B) Cleaning 33:02
    • C) Disinfection 36:20
  • 43:26 Types of Disinfectant

What is Biosecurity

Farm Biosecurity is anything that needs to be done to protect the farm, its livestock and its workers from diseases. Lately, hog raisers became aware of its importance because of the recent outbreaks of African Swine Fever (ASF) and the Covid-19 pandemic in the Philippines and other countries

Effects of Poor Biosecurity

Increase in Feed Cost

Studies show that poor biosecurity slows down the growth rate of pigs and increases the Feed Conversion Ratio (FCR) up to 30%. This is because some feeds consumed by the pig is used to produce more antibodies to protect its health rather than converting it for energy necessary for growth.

Poor Litter Size

Moreover, the litter size of sows decreases from 1-2 piglets per farrowing. It is because reproductive problems and other disease agents can easily set in and cause poor production performance.

Disease Problem

Lastly, when a farm is affected by a foreign animal disease like ASF, it would have a devastating effect and might force the business to close down. That is why many small hold pig farmers in Luzon were affected by this disease because of poor knowledge on biosecurity.

Steps in Farm Biosecurity

A) Isolation / Segregation

This is the first and most important step. First, we keep the sick animals from healthy animals in the herd to prevent disease spread.

Moreover, it also involves putting all animals that were bought in isolation for a certain period of time. For example, new gilts should be isolated for 2 months upon arrival, and located about 100 meters or more from the other existing stocks.

Incoming Pigs

Also, buy stocks that are apparently healthy. You can ask for the disease-free certification program from you breeder farm source.

Moreover, do not buy from multiple sources because your farm will become a breeding ground for multiple diseases.


Make sure to provide perimeter fencing or stone wall around the farm. This is to prevent stray pigs, dogs, birds and cats from entering the farm.

Dogs and birds can bring Transmissible Gastro Enteritis (TGE) in the farm while cats can be the source of Toxoplasmosis in Pigs.

Gate Sign

Put up tarpaulin signs/notices in front of the farm gate so that visitors/intruders will not readily enter the farm. In addition, put a mobile phone number in the signage where visitors may call up.

B) Cleaning

Incoming Visitors

Most pig farms require visitors to take a shower and change clothes in the farm before entering the buildings/pig houses. Moreover, one or two days down-time since visiting other pig farms will be advisable.

Pest Control

The most common pest in the farm are rodents and flies. They come into contact with animal feeds and may transfer diseases. Also, these pests can carry diseases like Leptospirosis, E. coli scours, Salmonellosis and Swine Dysentery.

Vehicles and Equipments

Hog farmers should reject dirty trucks of buyers/traders from entering the farm premises. They should be washed, disinfected and dried before loading pigs.

It became a concern that ASF was also spread through contaminated vehicles and hog traders.

Buildings and Pens

The ceiling, walls and flooring of the building should be washed with water and detergent. Effective cleaning removes 80%-90% of the bacterial count and contamination in the pen. Remove visible organic material for faster cleaning.

C) Disinfection

Disinfection is the final step in implementing farm biosecurity. It requires using a disinfectant suitable for a particular job.


There are two primary functions of disinfectants. First, they prevent infectious diseases gaining access inside the farm. Second, they also control organisms in the farm from growing in number that may cause disease.

Many factors need to be considered for choosing one, like effectivity in the presence of organic matter, contact time, safety, compatibility with soaps, price and non-corrosive properties.

Commonly Available Disinfectants

There are 6 classes of chemicals that can be used for disinfection of the pig farm and I will discuss their merits and give examples.

1.) Phenols These are organic compounds that are usually effective with organic matter and are not corrosive to metals. They are quite cheap and are usually used for foot bath, vehicle dip and general disinfection.

However, they have strong and persistent odor, making it hard in using them in closed pens with pigs

Examples are Creolina used as footbaths is commercial farms, Lysol, Chemitec 5%, Virubac 40%

2.) Chlorine-based compounds

These compounds have very quick action against bacteria, spores, fungi and viruses. Moreover, they are very cheap.

However, they are easily neutralized with the presence of organic matter. They are also very corrosive and most do not persist for a long time.

Examples are sodium hypochlorite like Zonrox, chloramines like SI-Chlor Tablet

3) Iodine-based compounds

Iodophor is a combination of iodine and a surfactant. The most common is povidone-iodine that is used as antiseptic and disinfectant.

These compounds are ideal for foot baths and are very fast-acting. They are very effective for viruses and bacteria and are moderately active in organic matter.

However, they are quite expensive than the other disinfectants.

Examples of iodophors are Biocid-30, Davidine, Iodostrike

4) Quaternary-ammonium compounds (QACs)

These are potent disinfectant and mostly used for cleaning and sterilizing water systems and equipments.

Most are active against gram positive bacteria but new generation also have virucidal activities at low concentration.

They are non-toxic, odorless and not hazardous to animals and humans. So they can be used as hand sanitizers.

However, they are neutralized by organic matter so they are not suitable for the disinfection of the premises.

Examples of QACs are Bestaquam, Viddex, Microban AVI

5) Formaldehyde and Aldehydes

Formaldehydes are commonly known as “formalin”. They are very toxic and are used to fumigate large swine units and mixed with potassium permanganate to produce formaldehyde gas.

Aldehyde like glutaraldehyde is more effective disinfectant and less irritating than formaldehyde. It is usually combined with quaternary ammonium compounds (QACs) to have excellent disinfecting action.

Examples of aldehydes with QACs are Vibatect, Microban GT, Protect Plus

6) Peroxygen compounds

These are new broad spectrum, multi-purpose disinfectants like potassium peroxymonosulfate, sodium dodecylbenzenesulfonate, sulfamic acid and inorganic buffers. Also included in this category are hydrogen peroxide and organic acids

These are effective even with the presence of organic matter. They are ideal for aerial disinfection inside the pens with animals, especially if the farm is having bacterial or viral problems.

Examples of peroxygen compounds are Virkon-S, Hyperox and Trifectant.

Follow the recommended dilution and contact time in the label to help optimize the effectiveness of disinfectants in your Pig farm.

What do you think? What are your thoughts on having a good biosecurity protocol in your farm? Please share your comments below.

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