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Comparative on-farm study of alternatives for surgical castration of male pigs: consequences for boar taint and carcass quality

Boekbijdrage - Boekhoofdstuk Conferentiebijdrage

Different alternatives for surgical castration without anaesthesia were performed on 20 farms to evaluate the effect on boar taint and carcass quality.

Material and methods
20 farms in Flanders performed: 1) castration (CONT) 2) castration with 100% CO2 anaesthesia (CO2), 3) castration with analgesia, given 10 to 15 minutes before castration (Metacam®, MET), 4) immunocastration (Improvac®, VACC), and 5) production of entire male pigs (EM) with 120 pigs raised in single sex groups per farm and per treatment. CONT, CO2 and MET were considered as barrows (BA). Boar taint was measured on neckfat with the hot iron method on a scale from 0 to 4 for 2047 EM, 934 VACC and 649 BA. Cold carcass weight and meat percentage were evaluated at slaughter.

Average slaughter weight did not differ, but variation was higher for EM (90.6±11.2kg) than for VACC (91.1±9.9kg) or BA (90.2±9.6kg). Meat percentage was 60.5±3.7% for BA, 61.1±3.6% for VACC and 62.4±3.3% for EM. On 6 farms, meat percentage of VACC was reduced (-0.7 to -1.8%), while on 9 farms meat percentage was increased by more than 1% (+3.6% maximum). For EM, meat percentage was reduced only on 1 farm (0.5%), while on 12 farms it was increased by more than 2%. Boar taint prevalence (score >2) was on average 0.2% for BA, 0.5% for VACC and 3.0% for EM. On 9 farms, boar taint prevalence of EM was < 1%. On three farms, prevalence was > 10%

On nearly half the farms the prevalence of boar taint of EM was < 1%. The improved carcass quality results of EM and VACC compared to BA are in line with literature. Carcass quality of EM and VACC as well as boar taint prevalence of EM varied widely between farms. So, optimisation of management might be needed to achieve good results.
Boek: 4th European Symposium of Porcine Health Management: Programme & Abstract book
Pagina's: 99
Jaar van publicatie:2012