• Journal Article

An analysis of mortality in the grower/finisher phase of swine production in the United States


Losinger, W. C., Bush, E. J., Smith, M. A., & Corso, B. A. (1998). An analysis of mortality in the grower/finisher phase of swine production in the United States. Preventive Veterinary Medicine, 33(1-4), 121-145.


Over a 6-month period, the mean mortality risk (based on 393 operations participating in the United States National Animal Health Monitoring System 1995 National Swine Study, and representing operations with > or = 300 market hogs in 16 states), was 2.3 +/- 0.2% in the grower/finisher production phase (where figures after the +/- represent the standard error of the estimate). Mortality > or = 4% was experienced by 13.5 +/- 2.9% of grower/finisher operations, while 63.6 +/- 5.3% had < or = 2% mortality. To identify factors associated with > or = 4% mortality, stepwise logistic regression [Statistical Analysis Systems, 1989. SAS/STAT User's Guide, Version 6, 4th edn, Vol. 2. SAS Institute, Cary, NC, 794 pp.] was performed twice: once using operations with all mortality rates, and again excluding operations with between 2% and 4% mortality. Final models were run with SUDAAN [Shah, B.V., Barnwell, B.G., Bieler, G.S., 1996. SUDAAN User's Manual, Version 6.40, 2nd edn. Research Triangle Institute, Research Triangle Park, NC, 492 pp.] to take the sample design into account. In addition, SAS and SUDAAN logistic regression models were developed to analyze factors associated with > 2.3% mortality among grower/finisher pigs. Mean weaning age < or = 28 days entered all models as being associated with increased mortality in the grower/finisher unit. Not obtaining all grower/finisher pigs from farrowing units belonging to the operation was associated with > or = 4% mortality among grower/finisher swine. Not typically giving grower/finisher pigs antibiotics or other agents as disease-preventives or growth-promotants in the feed or water, and ranking producer organizations as very or extremely important sources of antibiotic information were associated with < or = 2.3% mortality in the grower/finisher phase