Electronic sow feeding system earns Seal of Approval
The American Humane Association (USA) has awarded the Seal of Approval for Humane Equipment to Big Dutchman’s CallMatic 2 electronic sow feeding system (ESF). Electronic sow feeding systems allow for true individual feeding of sows kept in group housing rather than in gestation crates during pregnancy, giving them the ability to move freely, rest comfortably and interact naturally with other sows. As concerns for animal welfare, demanding that sows are no longer confined to gestation stalls, are growing strongly all over the world, ESF is becoming an important and well accepted alternative system for effective sow management.
Perfecting electronic sow feeding systems for pig production units
Big Dutchman’s ‘CallMatic 2’ is the result of 30 years of continuous research and development in an effort to perfect electronic sow feedings systems for large and small pig production operations. It was also an effort towards more humane pig equipment concepts and technology – first requested and pushed by Europe – and is now being recognized and appreciated in North America. The Seal of Approval, received from the American Humane Association, is another important step ahead for substantial collaborations between hog producers, equipment manufacturers and welfare organizations.
The American Humane Association created America’s first third party audit and animal welfare certification program. Today food producers with more than 60 million farm animals have been certified by American Humane Association's science-based farm animal program, responding to consumer and retailer demand for an independent, third-party verification of their practices.
Modern pig equipment for group housing of sows
CallMatic 2 ESF systems are successfully running in numerous sow farms in the US, Canada and the rest of the world, providing sows with freedom of movement and true individual, undisturbed feeding. At the same time, the electronic sow feeding system pleases farmers with the advantage of a total management tool. The pig production results are similar in all operations: good sow performance, often better than before the transition to group housing and CallMatic.
Sow farmer extremely satisfied
Reed Gibby from Nature Farms in Idaho, who moved his 1100 sows into group housing with Callmatic 2 several years ago, is one of many satisfied customers and proud of his achievements with the ESF system: “We put the sows in dynamic groups and this has resulted in almost no fighting in groups.” Gibby adds: “We love the CallMatic system. We have seen an overall improvement with sow health: fewer lame sows and less problems in the farrowing department because sows are more mobile. The condition of the sows is much easier to maintain and we feel we also have fewer still born pigs”.
Hans Ulrich, Director of Pig Equipment Sales at Big Dutchman Inc., USA, an expert in automatic feeding and sow management who has worked with breeders for over 30 years, is happy to receive the Seal of Approval as formal acknowledgement for the superiority of the Big Dutchman system. But he also remarks, that for him “the best proof of the system’s benefits and accomplishments, is to hear our customers’ enthusiasm… or to see it for yourself, standing amidst a group of 120 placid sows, that are chilling together or just taking a walk – and interacting naturally.”