The strategically developed Leavenworth Livestock Research Center, owned by Lax-Pietig Family Farms, has been two years in the making. Although the heavily anticipated facility opened its doors in August, the 2,500-head, wean-to-finish center is already expected to make big advancements in the research sector of the swine industry.

Located near Sleepy Eye, Minnesota, the research site boasts two 1,250-head rooms and is fully equipped with 96 pens (48 per room) and innovative technologies like the Big Dutchman DryExact feeding system. This automated equipment measures and delivers the exact amount of feed prescribed to each feeder each day. It offers simple, safe and effective pen-based feeding and precise feeding amounts, and it makes the goal of free-choice feeding a reality.

It may look similar to a commercial barn; however, the facility is fully filtered. The system removes dust and pathogens before they get into the barn, thereby alleviating many biosecurity concerns.

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Improving research, production and the producer’s bottom line

Though presently occupied by a group of test pigs, the Hubbard Feeds team introduced a new group to the facility in mid-November 2017 for a much-anticipated research trial on Blueprint, an Alltech program. The goal of this trial will be to confirm the cumulative effects of Alltech technologies on growth, health and meat quality.

The new facility will create an opportunity to do research in a realistic commercial production scenario. The research team can gather large amounts of statistical data with the number of pigs on-site and connect those results to similar situations for swine producers. This could potentially help customers achieve their production goals, increase profitability, reduce risk and improve their overall competitive advantage.