Science Versus Emotion
As if pork producers didn’t already have enough to contend with after all the misunderstanding surrounding the H1N1 virus, irrigretibly called the swine flu, now there is the ongoing debate over sow housing systems. The pork industry is trying to figure out how to deal with this very complex issue that currently seems to revolve more around emotion than it does science. In response to the public uproar and numerous challenges that have surfaced recently over sow housing systems National Pork Producers Council delegates have instructed their leadership to conduct an inclusive study over the next year of current sow housing options. During the study the NPPC will evaluate existing literature from experts in animal well-being, animal science and veterinary medicine. Pork producers want people to know that they understand public concerns, and also that they feel an obligation to provide information that will help consumers understand the different and complex parameters of sow housing systems. The hope is that future decisions regarding sow housing options can be based on science rather super charged emotions.