PortageOnline reports hog producers have access to technology that can reduce in-barn dust levels by up to 80 percent.

The new technology uses the same principles previously used to scrub smoke stacks. Electrostatic Particle Ionization (EPI) is a new technology used to charge the airspace in confined feeding structures. Particles in the air are charged with negative ions, turning dust particles into a little magnet that falls to the ground.

John Baumgartner, president of Baumgartner Environics, says EPI lowers dust levels in a hog barn by 60 to 80 percent, improving animal health. The lower dust levels are also safer for farm workers.

"If for example, we're removing 60 percent of the dust. We're going to, at the same time, be removing about 55 percent of the ammonia and other gases that adsorb to the dust particle. We're also going to remove about 65 percent of pathogens, like bacteria, that also attach or adsorb to a dust particle," he explains.

Baumgartner conducted three years of research and found nursery pigs in an EPI barn saw an average daily gain of about 13 percent.

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Source: www.PortageOnline.com