Progress 07/01/02 to 06/30/05
The primary focus of this project was to conduct a National Conference on Hoop Barns and Bedded Livestock Systems and a Scientific Symposium. These workshops were held September 14 and 15, 2004 in Ames, Iowa. The meetings were designed for producers, educators, animal health professionals, scientists, and extension staff. Approximately 330 individuals from 10 countries and 14 states attended the meetings. There were 13 co-sponsors of the event. Educational materials were prepared for the meetings as stand alone pamphlets in conjunction with the MidWest Plan Service. There were three pamphlets on swine, one on beef cattle, one on dairy and one on horses, sheep, and ratites. The pamphlets are listed in the publication section of this report. The pamphlets are available on-line or printed via the MidWest Plan Service, Ames, Iowa. There were also 15 exhibitors at the meetings.
The meetings were well attended and well received. A portable virtual reality unit was demonstrated that showed air flow in bedded hoops barns. The evaluations were positive with comments focused on practical management applications of hoop barns, niche marketing, and animal bhavior. To date the MidWest Plan Service reports the following distribution from September, 2004 through February, 2005. Swine Finishing AED41 - 400 copies, Swine Gestating AED44 - 396 copies, Swine Farrowing AED47 - 388 copies, Beef Cattle AED50 - 721 copies, Horses, Sheep, Ratites AED52 - 371 copies, Dairy Cattle AED51 - 381 copies. For a total of 2,657 copies distributed in five months.
- Brumm, M.C., J.D. Harmon, M.S. Honeyman, J.B. Kliebenstein, S.M. Lonergan, R. Morrison, and T. Richard. 2004. Hoop Barns for Grow-Finish Swine. Rev. Ed. AED41. MidWest Plan Service. Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA. 24 pp.
- Harmon, J.D., M.S. Honeyman, J.B. Kliebenstein, T. Richard, and J.M. Zulovich. 2004. Hoop Barns for Gestating Swine. Rev. Ed. AED44. MidWest Plan Service. Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA. 20 pp.
- Lammers, P.J., M.S. Honeyman, and J.D. Harmon. 2004. Alternative Systems for Farrowing in Cold Weather. AED47. MidWest Plan Service. Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA. 11 pp.
- Shouse, S., M. Honeyman, and J. Harmon. 2004. Hoop Barns for Beef Cattle. AED50. MidWest Plan Service. Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA. 15 pp.
- Harmon, J.D., M.S. Honeyman, and B. Koenig. 2004 Hoop Barns for Hoses, Sheep, Ratites and Multiple Utilization. AED52. MidWest Plan Service. Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA. 7 pp.
- Kammel, D. 2004. Hoop Barns for Dairy Cattle. AED51. MidWest Plan Service. Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA. 16pp.
Progress 01/01/03 to 12/31/03
The primary focus of this project was to develop educational materials and networks of producers and experts in preparation for a national conference on alternative bedded livestock systems to be held in Iowa during September 2004. An extensive list of contacts and invitees for the national conference has been developed. The environmental effect on pork quality comparing hoop buildings and standard ventilated confinements was conducted. On two different slaughter days, 40 carcasses were measured for backfat, hot carcass weight (HCW), and loin depth. Loins of each group were excised. Hoop-finished pigs had higher HCW and firmness values (P<0.05) compared to the confinement-finished hogs, but there were no other differences noted. A literature review of the social science research on farm animal-human interactions and on farm animal welfare concerns has been conducted. Extended, qualitative interviews with 14 swine producers using hoop barns have been completed and are
being analyzed. Progress on the Hoop Barn Livestock Manual has occurred. Major updates of existing materials on finishing and gestating swine are complete. New pamphlets on swine farrowing and breeding, dairy and beef cattle, and other species are in progress. The manual will be released at the conference. To identify performance-challenged pigs early (pre-weaning), 100 sows were closely monitored during farrowing. Birth order, birth weight, teat nursed, immunoglobulin level, weight gain, and pig gender were measured on approximately 1,000 piglets. The pigs were tracked through finishing to market. The piglet data set is being compared to finishing performance, to find early indicators of subsequent performance. Also two completed studies were analyzed and reported. One comparing finishing pigs in bedded hoops to pigs fed in confinement, and the other evaluating feasibility of placing early weaned pigs in hoop barns in warm seasons.
Nearly 800 farmers in Iowa have constructed more than 2,200 hoop barns for swine in a relative short span of 6-7 years. Most of the barns are used for finishing pigs. The group has authored numerous publications in scientific, engineering, technical and popular press. The scientific and production base for high value niche pork is being generated by the work of this group. Several educational presentations have been made including an update on hoop structures for swine research to farmers at a meeting in Kalona, Iowa, March, 2003; a presentation on feeding small grains to swine in hoops at the annual meeting of Practical Farmers of Iowa, January 2004. The work will continue to integrate hoop barns and alternative production systems into long-term sustainable agriculture.
- Honeyman, M.S., and J.D. Harmon. 2003. Performance of finishing pigs in hoop structures and confinement during winter and summer. Journal of Animal Science 81:1663-1670.
- Larson, M.E., M.S. Honeyman, and J.D. Harmon. 2003. Performance and Behavior of Early-Weaned Pigs in Hoop Structures. Applied Engineering in Agriculture 19(5):591-599.
- C. Clare Hinrichs and Rick Welsh. 2003. The effects of the industrialization of U.S. livestock agriculture on promoting sustainable production practices. Agriculture and Human Values 20:125-141.
- Honeyman, M.S. 2003. Extensive bedded indoor and outdoor pig production systems in USA: Current trends and effects on animal care and product quality. 54th annual meeting European Association of Animal Production, Rome, Italy. Book of Abstracts: 9:165.
Progress 01/01/02 to 12/31/02
This is the first progress report for this project and represents only a partial year. Work on the project began during the last half of 2002. An interdisciplinary group, known as the Hoop Group, consisting of seven faculty members is working on the project. This interdisciplinary group has members representing animal nutrition, animal housing and environment, community and sociological interaction, meat quality, manure management, animal health, and business analysis. Based on the objectives, the progress achieved includes: Objective 1: A Hoop Manual. The team has developed an initial outline of the manual and has contacted the MidWest Plan Service for a bid to contract the writing, production, and dissemination of the manual. Also a full-color educational leaflet on hoops for swine was prepared and distributed at the Iowa Pork Congress and the Practical Farmers of Iowa annual meeting held in January, 2003. A display that focuses on extending results to user groups
is also being designed. Objective 2: Other species in hoops. Extension staff across the nation have been contacted about possible sites using hoops for livestock species other than pigs. The results have been positive. For example horse, ostrich, and dairy cattle sites have been located. Plans also include contacting hoop barn manufacturers to help identify the alternative uses of hoop buildings. Objective 3: National Hoop Workshop. The tentative dates are set for 2004. Plans include using the workshop to introduce and distribute the hoop manual. Additionally, the following objectives will be started during this project: Objective 4: Hoop pork production system analysis. A research assistant is being recruited and then this portion of the project will commence. Objective 5: Humane swine systems. A graduate research assistant has been hired and the project planning is underway. The project will identify risk factors and potential intervention strategies for reducing mortality and
culling of growing pigs. Currently, a literature review is in process. Projects are expected to begin in the spring of 2003. Objective 6: Pork quality. This activity is in the planning stages. Some preliminary work has begun to aid in more detailed planning. Objective 7: Farmer perception survey. A research assistant is actively conducting farmer surveys about their perceptions of hoop barns used for swine.
Hoop barns are low-cost and versatile. They generate solid manure which has less risk of manure spills and provide humane bedded environments for livestock. The low cost and versatility make hoop barns attractive to farmers who have small or medium-sized livestock operations. Livestock housed in bedded hoop barns often qualify for higher value niche markets. The educational leaflet is receiving wide exposure. It focuses on information known about hoop pig production.
- Honeyman M, J Mabry, C Johnson, J Harmon and D Hummel. 2002. Sow and litter performance for individual crate and group hoop barn gestation housing systems: a progress report. ASL-R1816, Swine Research Report AS-648, ISU Ext. Serv., Ames, IA.
- Larson B, J Kliebenstein, M Honeyman and A Penner. 2002. Economics of finishing hogs in hoop structures and confinement: seasonal and annual comparison. ASL-R1817, Swine Research Report AS-648, ISU Ext. Serv., Ames, IA.
- Larson B, J Kliebenstein, M Honeyman and A Penner. 2002. Economics of finishing pigs in hoop structures and confinement: a summer group under different space restrictions. ASL-R1818, Swine Research Report AS-648, ISU Ext. Serv., Ames, IA.
- Honeyman MS, ZM Sullivan and WB Roush. 2002. Oat based diets for market pigs in deep-bedded hoop barns. ASL-R1819, Swine Research Report AS-648, ISU Ext. Serv., Ames, IA.
- Hermann JR and MS Honeyman. 2002. Niman Ranch Pork and the ISU Allee farm: a case study. ASL-R1821, Swine Research Report AS-648, ISU Ext. Serv., Ames, IA.
- Larson B and J Kliebenstein. 2002. Cost of Pork Production with Nonsubtherapeutic Use of Antibiotics. ASL-R1820, Swine Research Report AS-648, ISU Ext. Serv., Ames, IA.