MANHATTAN, Kan. -- Kansas State University researchers have found that hogs given a water-based medication had a growth response similar to that of hogs provided a feed-based medication.

Researchers gave one group of pigs Neomycin via their drinking water and gave another group the medication in their feed. They found that improvements in daily gain and feed intake were similar in both sets of pigs.

"The significance of these findings is that feed mills could provide antibiotic-free feed. And, producers could administer the antibiotic through water and achieve the same growth benefit as provided by feed-grade antibiotics," said Bob Goodband, swine specialist with K-State Research and Extension.

Currently, feed-based medication is less expensive, Goodband said. But, some producers and mills may choose the increased flexibility that a water application provides.

More information about swine production is available on the swine section of the K-State Research and Extension Web site.

SOURCE: K-State Research and Extension news release.