The seventh year of the successful distance education series, PorkBridge, begins Dec. 6. The 2012-2013 program lineup includes a variety of topics presented by industry experts. Operating through the collaboration of 11 land grant universities, PorkBridge reaches producers and industry professionals across the country and around the world in an every-other-month series of six sessions.
The series provides relevant and accurate information for those who own, manage or work in swine grow-finish facilities, says Kansas State University animal science professor Joel DeRouchey. He is the Kansas contact for PorkBridge.
“Producers and others in the industry can get the information they need without the hassle of traveling or giving up a whole day to attend a meeting,” says DeRouchey, who is a livestock specialist with K-State Research and Extension. “PorkBridge participants can take part where it works best for them whether at home, in an office or in the swine unit. And all of them can download audio files from each session for later use.”
PorkBridge combines electronic information viewed on a computer with live presentations by topic experts via telephone. About a week before each session, subscribers receive a CD or web link (depending on their location) with specific presentation and additional information provided by the presenter. Participants call in for the audio portion of each session and follow along with the presentation on their computer. All sessions begin at noon Central Standard Time and last about 90 minutes. Each session includes time for questions of the presenter.
“The fee has not changed since the program began in 2005, and it is a great deal at $125 for the entire year,” DeRouchey says.
The subscription form and payment must be received by Nov. 12 to assure receipt of program materials in time for the first session on Dec. 6. An informational brochure with subscription information is available on the K-State Research and Extension Web site under Upcoming Events: http://www.ksuswine.org. Kansas residents who want more information can call DeRouchey at (785) 532-2280.
Session dates, speakers, industry affiliations and topics are:
- Dec. 6, 2012 –John Patience, Iowa State University, “Strategies to Reduce Feed Costs”
- Feb. 7, 2013 – Mike Ellis, University of Illinois, “Optimizing Stocking Density in Wean-to-Finish Barns”
- April 4, 2013 – Aaron Gaines, The Maschhoffs, “Managing Finishing Pigs to Improve Production Efficiency”
- June 6, 2013 – Mark Whitney, University of Minnesota, “Managing Heat Stress”
- Aug. 1, 2013 – Mike Tokach and Hyatt Frobose, Kansas State University, “Effect of Optimizing Feed Withdrawal Length and Fiber Levels Prior to Marketing on Net Return”
- Oct. 3, 2013 – Andrew Bowman, The Ohio State University, “Pigs, Flu, and You”
The Iowa Pork Industry Center at Iowa State University coordinates all PorkBridge details, including registration and subscriber mailings. Mark Whitney and Lee Johnston of the University of Minnesota coordinate the PorkBridge program.