The Aeres Farms pig farm -the practice / learning environment of Aeres Hogeschool Dronten- has the most innovative free-range farrowing pens in the Netherlands with the purchase of WellFarrowing farrowing pens.


“The new farrowing pens had to meet two important conditions”, says Joel Mulderij, one of the four students involved in the pig farm: “As little loss of young piglets as possible and maximum welfare for sow and piglets.” After consultation with installer Nijenkamp and flooring manufacturer Nooyen, the students opted for WellFarrowing free-farrowing floor in combination with a MultiFarrow farrowing pen.


Floor moves when sow stands up
This freefarrowing pen has a movable floor for the sow. In this farrowing crate, the sow can recover quietly for the first five days after farrowing and the chance that the young, vulnerable piglets will be crushed by the mother is nil. As soon as the sow steps into the box, sensors provide a signal that causes the floor of the sow to move upwards and the piglets can no longer climb onto the floor where the sow is standing. As soon as the sow lies down, the floor drops back to the same level as where the piglets live. After five days, the sow can roam freely through the farrowing pen. The piglets are then strong and fast enough to avoid the sow when it lies down. ”


Very little mortality in young piglets

The first results with the WellFarrowing concept with Multifarrow farrowing crate are very positive. Joel: “Piglet mortality is minimal. It is also nice to see that this farrowing pen offers much more space for the sow's maternal behavior. ” The farrowing pen has a floor with a thick soft coating. “This floor offers a lot of comfort to the young piglets, so there are no wounds on the knees. This improves the health of the piglets. ”


Proud of the first innovative farrowing pen

The students of the Aeres Farms pig farm are proud to be the first in the Netherlands to use this new innovative farrowing pen. “With this farrowing crate we show that we as young entrepreneurs focus on animal welfare and sustainability in combination with good business results. In this way we want to contribute to the continuous improvement of the pig sector and thus also contribute to increasing support for pig farming in the Netherlands.”


Aeres Hogeschool Dronten