Buyer's Guide: January/February 2013

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Piglet Heat Pads Reduce Crush Loss

Heat placement for young pigs is a critical component for maintaining optimal health and getting animals started quickly. In farrowing environments, piglets must be kept from becoming chilled, which often leads to scours, more tail-enders and fewer healthy, thriving piglets.

Stanfield heat pads from Osborne Industries are designed to provide supplemental heat to newborn piglets and growing nursery pigs. Stanfield heat pads provide a warm resting area that helps keep piglets away from sows and helps in preventing crush losses. Several tests have been conducted and validate a 0.5 pig-per-litter increase with mats due to diminished crush loss.

The pad’s surface temperature stays uniformly warm, about 30° to 35° F above air temperature. The heat pad’s tough, fiberglass-reinforced composite material blocks drafts coming from the pit, is easy to clean and gives animals solid footing.        

Listed under CSA, UL and CE guidelines, Stanfield heat pads are safe to operate. At maximum power, an S1B4 heat pad uses 66 percent less power than a heat lamp. Plus, there is no chance of “blowing a bulb,” which may happen with heat lamps.

The electrical savings with 4-foot mats vs. 125-watt bulbs averages $56 per year per stall. Osborne’s Stanfield heat pads are available in a variety of sizes and wattages.

For more information, visit the company’s website at osbornelivestockequipment.com, or e-mail info@osborne-ind.com.

Promote Your Open House

Open house If you are considering having an open house to feature new or renovated swine facilities, the National Pork Board’s “We Care” program offers some very useful support materials. NPB is offering open house kits to provide producers with the promotional tools necessary to gain media and community attention on the opening or redesign of their facilities.

By promoting open house events for swine facilities, producers can demonstrate their commitment to their communities while displaying the economic impact and value of a swine operation.

The kit includes newspaper advertisements, a sample agenda, sample press release and other tools to promote the open house. Each document highlights the “We Care” initiative, showing the public that pork producers are committed to doing the right thing.

“An open house is an excellent opportunity to show the public what goes on behind the walls of the barn and to share the story of the farm family involved in the project,” said Tim Maiers, director of public relations for the Illinois Pork Producers Association. “The open house kit provides producers with the tools and resources necessary to assist them in planning and implementing a successful event.”

To order your open house kit, contact the NPB Service Center at (800) 456-7675. 

New Feed Inventory-management System

With feed costs at near-record highs, scheduling delivery and inventory tracking are increasingly important. BinMaster’s MultiBob inventory-management system provides an average bin level from measurements taken by two up to 32 SmartBob2 or SmartBob TS-1 sensors installed on the top of a single bin, tank, silo or flat storage warehouse containing powders, granulars or bulk solid materials.

The SmartBob sensors are strategically located in containers to monitor critical measuring points and are programmed to measure materials at scheduled time intervals or on demand. The advanced software compiles the measurement data to calculate an average level or headroom and estimated percentage full.

MultiBob can be used to monitor levels in any storage bin or flat storage warehouse where a single measurement is not adequate to estimate inventory. Each SmartBob sensor precisely measures in the same location every time, detecting level changes as bins and warehouses are emptied or filled using trucks, loaders or conveyors.

Large-diameter bins as well as bins with multiple filling and emptying points are common applications for MultiBob. Depending on the number and locations of SmartBob sensors mounted in the bin, the user can use the data to determine whether there are high and low spots in the bin, and which filling or emptying points they want to target.

For more information about BinMaster, visit binmaster.com.


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