Design, development and evaluation of educational, training and motivational initiatives for farm stockpeople and animal carers in Taiwan
The focus of this thesis is the poor competitive position of the pig industry in Taiwan and the design and evaluation of initiatives to improve the situation. To address these problems, this study set out to design and evaluate educational, training and motivational initiatives for pig farm managers and stockpeople and also for personnel involved in transport of pigs and in the handling of pigs in abattoirs and auction markets. Almost all the participants (99%) found the Pre-Training meetings helpful in preparing them for the training and in providing them with the opportunity to contribute to the planning of the Training Courses and the motivational initiatives. The majority of the participants (53%) wished to have science based Training Courses at frequent (every 1 to 3 months) intervals. There was very strong support (90%) for a progressive career ladder for stockpeople, the award of ‘advancement’ certificates and more appropriate job titles to reflect the considerable knowledge and skills of good stockpeople. Although there was strong overall support for the training and motivational initiatives and their impacts, this was greater on family farms than on company farms. The training resulted in a considerable increase in knowledge as reflected by the increase in Post Course relative to Pre Course Test Scores. Increases in Test Scores for family (60.2 v 91.2) and company farms (58.7 v 89.2) was 51 and 52% respectively. Responses to the same questionnaire completed both before and after training indicated that while both the job satisfaction and morale was increased significantly after training on family farms, this was not the case on company farms. However, there was very strong evidence on both family and company farms that training significantly (p<0.001) increased both awareness of animal welfare and the determination to improve animal welfare.