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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2023

Perspectives of on-farm biosecurity and disease prevention among selected pig veterinarians and pig farmers in Sweden

Gröndal, Hedvig; Tuominen, Krista; Sternberg Lewerin, Susanna

Abstract

Background: Biosecurity is important in preventing the spread of infectious diseases inanimal production. Previous studies have identified a disparity between the biosecurityrecommendations provided by veterinarians and the actual practices implemented byfarmers. This study compared group discussions with a few key actors among Swedishpig veterinarians and farmers on pig farm biosecurity.

Methods: Two focus group discussions were conducted, one with five Swedish pig vet-erinarians and one with three pig farmers, to explore their views on pig farm biosecurityand efficient biosecurity measures. The discussions were analysed to identify differencesand similarities in how biosecurity was perceived.

Results: The study identified differences between the veterinarians and pig farmers inhow they perceived good biosecurity and the level of biosecurity in Swedish pig herds. The veterinarians perceived that adhering strictly to the farming system and its barrierswas essential for good biosecurity. The biosecurity in the pig farms was often consideredinadequate. The veterinarians described difficulties in biosecurity-related communica-tion with the farmers. The pig farmers valued the flexibility of the farming system overstrict barriers and described that the level of biosecurity was good in Swedish pig herds. However, both groups also shared similar views regarding the challenges in farm biose-curity. They highlighted that biosecurity measures with proven efficacy are importantfor farmer motivation.

Conclusions: This limited study suggested that different perspectives on biosecuritycan contribute to communication difficulties between pig farmers and veterinarians. Acknowledging both the differences and similarities of the different perspectives mayhelp improve cooperation and communication in biosecurity-related questions.

Published in

Veterinary Record Open
2023, Volume: 10, number: 2, article number: e68