The 7 important and individual steps in the optimal cleaning and disinfection protocol for livestock barns 

Cleaning and disinfection (C&D) of livestock barns between production cycles is crucial in achieving a good farm biosecurity. Optimal C&D takes 7 individual steps that need to be executed chronologically!

  1. Start with dry cleaning the barn to remove coarse manure, emptying feeders and waterlines, and removing finer dirt . The less organic material remains, the more efficient the C&D will be, saving product, water and time.
  2. In step 2 the barn is soaked first only with water and next with water and detergent for better dissolving of fats and dirt. Foam is to be preferred for its longer contact time, better visibility and effectiveness. Foam the barn from floor to ceiling upwards for longer contact time. Leave enough time for the foam to work on the dirt before the next step of rinsing with a high pressure washer between 50 and 120 bar.
  3. Rinse the barn from ceiling to floor downwards to prevent recontamination of the cleaned upper surfaces.
  4. Next, very important is step 4: drying before disinfection. Make sure to clear feeders and drinking cups from rinsing water and dry the floor. It is crucial to prevent dissolution of the disinfection product to ensure its efficacy!
  5. Disinfection in step 5 can be done in various ways: wet, thermal disinfection, foam, fumigation or combinations. Also all loose material, central corridors, technical and office rooms, clothing and footwear need C&D.
  6. Step 6 is drying of the disinfection solution. Rinse the animal feeders and drinkers to prevent the incoming animals to ingest any disinfection product.
  7. The last step, whilst very important is often overlooked: testing the efficacy of your C&D protocol which should not be limited to visual inspection but ideally involves taking bacteriological swabs to assess the pathogen load in the barn.