Improving Sow Farm Biosecurity with ONCE BioShift®

In the swine industry, consolidation has resulted in larger farms housing higher numbers of animals at a single site. This trend allows for consistency in husbandry and veterinary care, enhanced biosecurity, and increased efficiency. However, due to the larger size sow farm (5,000-7,500 head on a single farm), the consequences of a pathogenic outbreak could be severe. Two viral diseases, in particular, have been exceptionally detrimental to the swine industry: Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) and porcine epidemic diarrhea. One common mode of transmission of these viruses is by the importation of contaminated objects (cell phones, lunch bags, tools) into the sow farm. To counteract this mode of transmission, the team at ONCE developed a pass-through chamber that uses high-energy germicidal Ultraviolet C radiation to treat objects before they enter the farm. After several iterations to optimize light intensity, exposure time, reflectance, and added safety controls, the final product, named the BioShift® Pass-through Chamber, was put to the test. First, PRRS virus and PED virus were used to contaminate plastic containers. Then viral loads were measured after UV-C exposure in the Bioshift® and compared to the control conditions where the BioShift was not used. Greater than 99.9% of the viruses were killed by the BioShift®. Second, a bioassay was performed and confirmed that there was no contagion remaining on the BioShift®-treated containers. Now, swine farms across America are implementing the use of the BioShift® pass-through chamber as an integral part of their biosecurity programs. This technology is recognized as a key tool to ensure the safety and security of the food supply chain and helps to ensure that the pigs remain healthy and comfortable throughout their lives.

Learn more about the BioShift UV-C Chamber