Emergencies are serious, unexpected and often dangerous situations requiring immediate action. So how can you prepare for an unplanned event?
From welfare implications to financial needs and from employee care to finding available resources, planning for an on-farm animal welfare emergency requires a lot of thought and can be overwhelming.
Don’t forget your state pork producer organization can be a valuable resource if an emergency strikes, says David Preisler, chief executive officer of the Minnesota Pork Producers Association.
Not only are state pork producer organizations tied into local and state government, but they also offer expertise in a variety of areas that you may not have considered.
“When it comes to dealing with the media, which most farms are not used to dealing with on a daily or weekly basis, remember that your state pork organization is,” Preisler says.
State organizations can assist with creating holding statements or press releases when a tragedy strikes and your attention needs to spent focusing on your animals.
Put your plan down on paper
It’s important to spend some time developing an emergency plan, he says.
“As Benjamin Franklin is quoted as saying, a failure to plan basically means you‘re going to plan to fail,” Preisler says. “Take some time and look at different scenarios that could happen. Whether it’s a windstorm, a fire or a truck turnover, think about realistic things that could happen over time.”
Preisler encourages pig farmers to consider how they would handle an emergency and put it down on paper. Identify key people that you can rely on and assign roles to those people. Determine what resources you will need to be prepared.
“Share that plan with a couple key people in your business and that will give you a better shot at getting things rolling quickly when a disaster strikes,” he adds.
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