Smart Feeding: Ensuring Precision Nutrition with ESF in Pig Production
ESF or also referred to as Electronic Sow Feeding is a precise and automated feeding system that provides individualised diets to sows based on their specific nutritional requirements. The system typically provides one or a few feeding stations for a large group of sows – often up to 60 – throughout the stages of gestation or lactation, and according to their growth phases.
The ability to seamlessly adapt to the nutrition requirements of individual sows is at the heart of this advanced system. ESF uses an RFID chip in the form of an ear tag that is linked to each sows’ unique profile in the system database. When a sow approaches an ESF station to feed, the system recognises the individual sow and dispenses the precise amount and type of feed automatically. The sow’s feed data, including the amount of feed consumed and feeding frequency is recorded, providing valuable data on feeding patterns and sow health.
The ESF systems makes managing the feeding of a large group of sows hassle-free and efficient without the need for extensive active monitoring of the sow herd. As a standard feature in most modern pig production facilities, the ESF system provides immense advantages to revolutionise sow management, including:
1. Improved Feed Efficiency
By delivering the right amount of feed tailored to each individual sow’s needs, ESF maximises feed efficiency, resulting in significant cost savings for pig farmers. Feed wastage is also kept to a minimum, providing even more cost efficiency in the long run.
2. Enhanced Sow Health & Welfare
Individualised feeding means that sows are neither underfed nor overfed. Most importantly, sows are able to move around freely in a group environment, which is part of their natural behaviour, minimising health issues and enhancing overall wellbeing.
3. Labour Efficiency
Automation reduces the labour required for feeding sows individually, which allows for farm staff to focus their time and effort to other aspects of sow management, greatly improving overall production efficiency.
4. Improved Production
When the diet is tailored and precise, the sows’ produce in an efficient manner, resulting in healthier piglets. This directly translates to improved productivity and subsequently higher profits for pig farmers.
The ESF system is adaptable to different stages of a sow’s life, including gestation, and mating periods. The system can be configured to adjust the feeding programme and nutrient composition to meet the changing requirements.
ESF by Big Dutchman – the smarter way to nourish sows
Big Dutchman offers 2 different ESF systems that allow for animal-friendly housing and feeding methods specifically adapted to the diets of sows individually. These ingenious systems require minimal and easy training to get up and running, while providing years of robust use in demanding environments.
1. CallMatic Pro 3
The most advanced ESF system with research and development that goes back 30 years. CallMatic Pro 3 allows for optimal nutrition delivery with two different types of dry feed, or can be used for liquid feeding. It also features a station computer with display, enabling easier on-site feed management. The system is also modular and can be adapted to many different configurations, easily fitting into most spaces.
2. CallBack Pro
Designed specifically for use in free access stall layouts, the CallBack Pro allows for an easy transition from conventional sow houses to loose sow housing. Up to 10 automated feeding stations can be centrally managed by the 510pro Controller for hassle-free management of feed. The feeding stations are also similar in shape and size to conventional stalls, which means retrofitting old houses becomes easy.
An additional advantage of using ESF systems from Big Dutchman is also the fact that it can be connected to the state-of-the-art BigFarmNet management software. The software makes it possible to control an unlimited number of ESF stations across multiple farms with easy access to data from a PC, tablet of mobile device. Settings adjustments can also be made on-the-fly remotely, while data on sow feed consumption provides insights into health and performance.
ESF is elevating pig production to new heights with precision nutrition and improved efficiency. This technology-driven approach to sow management is not only nurturing but also provides pig farmers a way to reduce operational costs and enhance animal welfare.
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