Gravity is Named Most Improved GDU

posted on Thursday, April 14, 2022

Danny and Jordan at Gravity
“I leave my farm every day knowing that I provided my best care to the animals,” said Danny, manager of Gravity GDU. “Jordan and I both take a lot of pride in this farm and the detail that goes into caring for gilts. We enjoy what we do and are honored to be recognized.”

Congratulations to Danny and Jordan at Gravity—a gilt development unit (GDU) located outside Gravity, Iowa in Taylor County—for being recognized as the Q3 2021 Most Improved.

For those who took in this year’s Super Bowl commercial, the town of Gravity might ring a bell. The town received a few seconds of fame with a shout-out from Jason Sudeikis in a TurboTax commercial. On all other days of the year, Gravity is known for its “we’re down to Earth” small-town charm.

Also putting Gravity on the map—the Iowa Select Farms map, that is—are Danny and Jordan, who every day go through the routines of pig care and work hard to bring improvement to the farm and herd. “Staying consistent with our care and sticking to a routine is best for the animals and their productivity,” said Jordan. He says they hold tight to the motto, Breed Right, Treat Right, Feed Right, that their supervisor, Randy, gave them. This serves as the basis for their animal care each day.

Danny says they also keep the “BeastMode biosecurity” mindset in the forefront. “When we prioritize biosecurity, it ensures that we keep a healthy herd. This allows us to focus on the things Randy emphasizes, such as the timing of breeding and observing every animal for a change in behavior or health and then treating early. We’re also looking at nutrition and feeding, which is important, especially during group feeding.”

Their attention to detail is backed by the 100 percent they received on their biosecurity and production well-being assessments. “These scores are excellent, and it shows how accountable and dedicated they are to their work,” said Randy, the farm’s supervisor.

Danny describes their approach in the barns as “having our heads on a swivel.” While it paints a vivid picture, they are constantly looking for clues the animals give that might tell Danny or Jordan something is wrong. They’re checking feed, water, health, behavior and environmental settings that can be improved.

Working together for almost three years gives the duo a step up. They know each other’s strengths and weaknesses and use them to their advantage. Most days, they rotate the barns they chore to get a fresh eye on the pigs, ensuring they don’t miss opportunities for better or individual care.

They also make a point of getting acquainted with the pigs by walking the pens. “Walking pens not only gives us a closer look at the pigs, but it builds a sense of trust between myself, Jordan and the animals. This makes moving them around barns a lot easier on the pigs and us,” said Danny.

“I always look forward to my visits with the Gravity team because of their pride in their farm,” said Randy. “They run a clean and organized operation year-round, and they have accomplished much because of their dedication.”

The two Clarinda natives love the daily hands-on work that their jobs provide. “Our roles are much bigger than ourselves,” said Jordan. “It feels amazing to play a part in the good work that Iowa Select Farms does for our industry.”