Since 2005, PorkBridge has provided relevant and timely information to grow-finish swine producers and other industry professionals across the United States and around the world through a unique low-tech delivery method. The 2020 program year series begins on Feb. 6 and continues on an every-other-month for six total sessions.
The program is a source of relevant and accurate information for those who own, manage or work in swine grow-finish facilities, according to Iowa State University animal science professor and extension swine specialist, Ken Stalder, who is the Iowa contact for PorkBridge.
"Producers and others in the industry can get the information they need without the hassle of traveling or giving up an entire day to attend a meeting," Stalder says. "PorkBridge participants can take part at home, in an office or in the swine unit, wherever it works best for them. And everyone can listen later to the audio we record of each live session."
PorkBridge provides an interactive teleconference with electronic materials and live presentations. About a week before each session, subscribers will receive a web link to download the session's presentation and any additional information provided by the presenter. Participants call in for the audio portion of each session and follow along with their own copy of the presentation on their computer or other device.
Sessions are scheduled for the first Thursday of each designated month but occasionally are moved a week to avoid interference with national industry events or holidays. Each session begins at 11:30 a.m. Central Time and lasts approximately 45 minutes.
The price remains at $100 for the entire series, and as in the past, each subsequent registration from the same entity is half that amount. Each registration provides access to one phone line per session and all program materials for each registration, including audio recordings of the live session, Stalder says.
"Program costs are slightly different for those with non-U.S. mailing addresses," he says. "Anyone with questions, regardless of location, should contact Sherry Hoyer at Iowa Pork Industry Center at Iowa State for more information."
This example video featuring information from a 2017 PorkBridge session provides an opportunity to see the content and format of this delivery method. Speaker Dale Ricker presents "Sights, Sounds and Smells of a Normal Finisher Barn" in it.
The registration form and payment must be received by Jan. 15 to assure receipt of program materials in time for the first session on Feb. 6. The program brochure has details and the registration form. Iowa residents who want more information can call Stalder at 515-294-4683.
Session dates, speakers and their industry affiliations, and topics are as follows.
- Feb. 6 – Pam Zaabel, Iowa State University; "African Swine Fever and Secure Pork Supply"
- April 2 – Steve Moeller, The Ohio State University; "Maintenance of Euthanasia Equipment"
- May 28 – Matt Ritter, Provimi U.S.; "In-barn Impacts on Meat Quality"
- Aug. 6 – Yuzhi Li, University of Minnesota; "Tail, Ear and Flank Biting: Reasons Why and How to Address"
- Oct. 1 – Jose Ramirez, Viroz Animal Health; "Proper Application of Disinfectants"
- Dec. 3 – Andy Brudtkuhl, National Pork Board; "Precision Technologies for Commercial Swine Production"