One Needle is One Too Many

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To maintain consumer confidence, the pork industry needs to train employees on how to properly give shots so no needles are ever broken. ( PORK )

Packers have occasionally found needles in meat, and it’s something the pork industry can’t afford to see happen. For Dave Pyburn, DVM, senior vice president of science and technology at that National Pork Board, one broken needle is one too many, he told Farm Journal’s PORK earlier this year.

A task force made up of packers, producers, tech companies, veterinarians and other parties was formed to gather perspective on the issues associated with broken needles.

“We wanted to get additional perspectives on market risk from producers and veterinarians,” Pyburn said. Out of that meeting came priorities that are part of that task force’s objectives.

“Number one is training,” Pyburn says. “The average market hog gets roughly five injections, and the vast majority of them are still with a needle.”

In addition, on-farm training that resonates with the labor force is essential. The task force also is looking at alternative technologies, like stronger needles, or needles that are more detectable if they do break. Pyburn said the group also is looking at syringe design, so see if there is a way to move the pressure point from the hub of the needle.

Watch this video with Pyburn to learn more.