This FAQ will provide you with answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the vaccination to control boar taint.
Q. Is the vaccine against boar taint a hormone?
A.No, the vaccine is a safe and highly effective solution that works like any other classic vaccine, using the pig's immune system to control boar taint. It is produced from a protein that occurs naturally in pigs. It isn't a hormone or a chemical and it contains no genetically modified components (GMOs) or microbiological agents.
Q. Is the vaccine available in my country?
A.The vaccine is available in many countries today. Many more countries will have the vaccine available soon.
Q. Is the vaccine a growth promoter?
A.No, the vaccine simply permits boars to grow to their full natural potential, requiring less feed to achieve the same weight as physical castrates.
Q. Are there disadvantages to using the vaccine?
A.No, the vaccine is safe, highly effective and practical for the producer, and is an animal friendly and environmentally responsible approach to controlling boar taint.
Q. Would a farmer or a vet normally be doing the injections?
A.The vaccine to control boar taint must be prescribed by a veterinarian. On-farm experience has shown that the vaccine can be safely administered by veterinarians or trained farm personnel following safety protocols and using a recommended injector with advanced safety features.
Q. What happens if a worker injects themselves?
A.Field experience suggests that the risk of self-injection is very small. Although no direct studies on humans have been conducted, extensive animal studies and scientific knowledge about this type of product suggest that accidental self-injection may produce similar effects in people to those seen in pigs. These may include a temporary reduction in sexual hormones and reproductive functions in both men and women and an adverse effect on pregnancy. The risk of these effects will be greater after a second or subsequent accidental injection than after a first injection. The product label advises anyone who has received an accidental self-injection to seek medical attention immediately and not to use the product in the future.
Q. Is the vaccine safe to use?
A.Over the last 10 years, trained farm personnel have safely administered millions of doses. Hands-on training for producers will also be available. Following safety protocols and using the proper injector with advanced safety features reduces the chances of accidental self-injection.
Q. I have read about legislation to prevent castration without anesthesia. Is this important?
A.Some countries have initiated legislation to prevent the physical castration of piglets without the use of anesthesia. This is important to producers as it requires them to evaluate alternatives to traditional castration practices. Thankfully, the alternatives, such as vaccination, are available.
Q. Does the vaccine leave any residue in the meat?
A. Pork from vaccinated boars is completely safe for human consumption. Similar to most vaccines, the vaccine against boar taint leaves no traces in pork that can affect human health. The vaccine is not a hormone or a chemical and it contains no genetically modified components (GMOs) or microbiological agents.
Q. Are injections of the vaccine safe for the pig?
A.Vaccination is an animal-friendly alternative to physical castration, eliminating physical castration-associated complications, infection and mortality risks. It has has been safely administered in millions of pigs for more than 10 years.
Q. Does vaccination pose any risk of environmental contamination related to the disposal of carcasses and waste?
A.No, vaccination against boar taint helps lessen the environmental impact of pig production and contributes to sustainable pig farming. As vaccinated pigs require less feed to reach market weight, they produce approximately 10% less manure than physically castrated pigs. Furthermore, the vaccine contains no chemicals or microbiological agents that might pose risks to the environment.