Biosecurity is of critical importance to a farm business. Having a biosecurity plan in place can significantly mitigate the risks of disease incursion.
Without stringent biosecurity measures and protocols in place to protect your livestock, you run the risk of introducing deadly diseases like avian influenza, Salmonella and Histomoniasis.
When a farm falls victim to a disease outbreak, it can have a range of implications. Following an outbreak, there can be significant operational downtime which is not only costly because the business is effectively closed, but you run the risk of losing your entire flock.
There are also further cost implications from disease outbreak, including the potential loss of whole flocks through controlled depopulation, the subsequent costs of cleaning and disinfecting the premises as well as the costs of restocking livestock.
Why have a biosecurity plan?
Farm businesses that handle livestock must have sufficient plans, such as a biosecurity plan in place to mitigate the risks of deadly pathogens entering a premises. Ultimately, without biosecurity planning, farm businesses become incredibly vulnerable to the risk of disease incursion.
Good on-farm biosecurity will minimise the risks of disease incursion and ensure that should your farm controls fail and a disease outbreak occurs, it can be confined to a small area on the farm, making it much easier to control and less costly to the business. Good biosecurity also helps with traceability to assist government bodies, on-farm personnel and local farm businesses in the surrounding area, should the worst happen.
Investing in a biosecurity plan is a money saving and stress reducing activity. Through biosecurity assessments, or a Biosecurity Advisory Service, a number of deficiencies can be highlighted, and effective solutions identified that can protect your livestock. Resolving issues across farm businesses and animal facilities using biosecurity, will save your flock and your livelihood.
Part of a complete biosecurity plan includes having a built-in preemptive strategy that details what you should do during an on-farm emergency such as an outbreak of a notifiable disease.
Contingency plans should be structured to emulate the day-to-day running of the farm business and dictate the changes which would need to be implemented, should the on-farm measures not be sufficient.
Preparing for the potential of a disease outbreak with an operational contingency plan that has clear guidelines on what should be done to reduce the impact of an outbreak, makes commercial sense. Having a clear set of processes documented gives you a full overview on every aspect of your farm business, allowing you to retain some control and reduce the spread of pathogens across your premises. Additionally, it will allow you to quickly get your operation up and running again.
Livetec has been involved in nearly every notifiable disease outbreak in the UK for over a decade. Using our years of experience, knowledge and evidence based research and development, we have become an industry leader in providing bespoke biosecurity strategies and contingency plans, helping farmers across the country to protect their livestock and livelihood.