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7.4 Dead Animal Disposal for Survey Households

Tables 7.8 to 7.9 summarize the percentage of households across countries and size of operations using a specific disposal method for dead animals. For swine production, a higher percentage of households surveyed chose to dispose of the dead piglets on farm. The specific method differed by country and size of operation. Ninety percent of the small independent producers in the Philippines buried the dead piglets. The majority of large-scale producers, on the other hand, got rid of their dead animals through incineration or some other method. Close to ninety percent of the broiler farms surveyed disposed of dead animals within the farm premises. The animals were buried, burned, thrown into pits, or fed to other animals. In Thailand dead swine often were given away as a gift, sold to the market, or back to the contractor. These practices were pretty uniform across size of operations. This may be due to a requirement of the integrator to assure that the pig died of natural causes. The Philippines is the only country to report that a small percentage of the households (1 percent) dump the dead piglets into the river.

Similar results were found with broilers and layers. As with swine, most of the households surveyed disposed of dead animals on farm. The most common disposal of dead broilers (Table 7.7) for small holders in India was burial (70 percent), followed by selling it to a secondary market (27 percent). A much smaller percentage of the large households in India reported this practice, but there were many no responses in this category to verify that assumption. In the Philippines, around 30-35 percent of all producers disposed of the birds through incineration compared to 10 percent of the small independent producers. In Thailand incineration and burial were reported together, and these practices appear to be the most popular amongst the households surveyed.

In terms of layers (Table 7.8) the preferred method of disposing dead animals is on farm for small-scale producers in both India and Thailand. More than half of India's small-scale producers chose burial over incineration. This may be due to the higher capital cost associated with incineration opposed to burial. A relatively large percent report disposal in the "other" category. The surveys when doing the survey found refrigerators in the back of many farms and it appears that the dead animals often are sold at a reduced price on a secondary market. This practice was also reported in Thailand. Fifty-eight percent of the large layer producers surveyed in Thailand send their dead animals to the retailer.

In India, there was similar mortality in the grow-out phase for small-scale producers (4 percent mortality) and large-scale producers (4 percent mortality). Most dead animals were buried or sold to a secondary market as a source of food. Close to 70 percent of both small and large scale broiler producers buried their dead animals. Selling frozen dead birds to a secondary market was also practiced by small-scale producers (26 percent) and large-scale producers (19 percent). Incineration was practiced more by large-scale producers (9 percent) than small-scale producers (3 percent). This may be due to the capital cost involved. Although feeding dead animals to fish is reported to be a practice in India, none of the households surveyed disposed of their dead birds in this manner.

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