Bpex has called on pig producers to take part in a £200,000 trial programme to improve production.

Beginning in December, Bpex expects to run between 10 and 12 fully funded projects in its first year with the budget set to increase in subsequent years.

Technical innovation manager Charlotte West said: “There are so many good ideas and experienced producers out there, we just haven’t had the expertise or resources to demonstrate these, until now.

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“Trials will give forward-thinking individuals an opportunity to work with new technologies and techniques and will have full support from Bpex, which will be responsible for drawing up protocols, installing any new equipment and providing resource, where needed, to make the trial a success.”

Regional forums of pig producers have already been set up to identify existing production issues and areas for investigation.

“We are looking for a real range of facilities, for example, experimental units, outdoor units and straw units.”
Charlotte West, Bpex

Ms West said it was important suggestions came directly from the industry. These will be presented to a technical sub-group in late-autumn, who will decide on which trials will take place, she added.

“We are looking for a real range of facilities, for example, experimental units, outdoor units and straw units.

“Interested universities, colleges and commercial farms are all very welcome to apply,” said Ms West.

Farmers can specify on their application what area they may be interested in trialling, she added.

Field trials coordinator, Peter Dunn, will then be writing project protocols, helping to set up the trials, monitor their progress and feed the results back to the industry.

There is no closing date for people to apply, but the first trials are likely to start in December this year.

Applications can be made on Bpex’s website. For more information contact Charlotte West on charlotte.west@bpex.ahdb.org.uk