Media Centre

Download this article & images (zip file)

FIVE STEPS TO IMPROVING HYGIENE

Simple steps to improving hygiene can significantly reduce the spread of diseases on farm. Animals gathered together in sheds are highly vulnerable to diseases and whilst the nation looks to maintain a good level of human hygiene, farmers can also take steps to protect their livestock too.

Sorgene® Xtra is a Defra approved, broad spectrum environmental disinfectant which contains a stabilised blend of peracetic acid and hydrogen peroxide. It is totally effective against viruses, bacteria and hard to kill fungal spores. Disinfectants can reduce the spread of diseases dramatically if used carefully and consistently. Helen Ainsworth, from BASF, offers five points of advice for farmers.

“A focus on hygiene is one of the simplest and most economical ways to reduce the spread of disease. Sorgene Xtra can be used for general hygiene, spraying or specific disease control dependent on the concentration used.”  

To make the most of disinfectant and reduce the spread of diseases, Helen suggests:

  • Thoroughly disinfect all accommodation. This is best achieved by pressure washing the sides and floors of livestock housing with a quality detergent before spraying with a disinfectant.
  • Bacteria, viruses and other micro-organisms are often present on clothing and boots. Farmers should be sure to wear clean overalls and dip boots in disinfectant to reduce the risk of introducing harmful diseases. Before entering livestock buildings it is also good practice to wash hands with a bactericidal soap.
  • Any equipment that is being used in conjunction with livestock should be disinfected in a solution of Sorgene Xtra before being used. Solutions should be changed frequently.
  • Livestock housing should be mucked out and disinfected regularly. Ideally farmers should remove old bedding and replenish with generous amounts of fresh bedding every day.
  • In the case of lambing, any sick ewes should be isolated and penned separately. Once lambing begins, any lambs that show signs of disease should also be separated and treated according to their symptoms. This will help to reduce contaminating other ewes and lambs during the lambing period.

 “We have the tools to reduce the spread of viruses to an absolute minimum. Farmers can protect themselves, their friends, family and livestock by simply keeping their sheds and equipment clean, using a disinfectant properly,” concludes Helen.