Biosecurity measures on swine farms in Spain: Perceptions by farmers and their relationship to current on-farm measures

J. Casal, A. De Manuel, E. Mateu, M. Martín

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A survey was conducted on 172 farms belonging to the same company in order to ascertain the biosecurity measures applied and the importance that farmers attributed to each measure. A questionnaire about general data, the opinions of farmers about biosecurity measures, and a detailed checklist of the biosecurity measures actually applied on the farm was completed for each one of the participating farms. Opinion data were initially analysed by means of a cluster analysis (multidimensional scaling method); then, a logistic regression was used to analyse the relationship between the perceptions of the farmer and the measures applied on the farm. In general, farmers implemented measures to reduce risks of contamination from people and animals other than pigs. In contrast, biosecurity measures related to replacement stock were not applied as often. On average, the farmers scored the biosecurity on their own farms as 6.7 on a scale of 0-10. The most important measures, according to the farmers' perceptions, were the availability of a sanitary ford, a fence around the farm, the restriction of visits and vehicles, using bird-proof nets in windows, having changing facilities, applying quarantines, and the use of other measures related to replacement stock. The perception of a given measure was strongly influenced by the measures actually applied on the farm. Thus, for example, those who did not have a sanitary ford highlighted the importance of disinfecting vehicles while those who had one neglected this type of disinfection. In conclusion, knowledge of the relationships between perceptions and measures taken is important in developing effective biosecurity strategies on pig farms. © 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-150
JournalPreventive Veterinary Medicine
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2007


  • Biosecurity measures
  • Farmer perceptions
  • Pig units


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