Project: Planning for better animal health and welfare

Livestock is important in many organic farming systems, and it is an explicit goal to ensure high levels of animal health and welfare (AHW) through good management. This will lead to reduced medicine use and better quality of animal products. In two EU network projects NAHWOA & SAFO it was concluded that this is not guaranteed merely by following organic standards. Both networks recommended implementation of individual animal health plans to stimulate organic farmers to improve AHW. These plans should include a systematic evaluation of AHW and be implemented through dialogue with each farmer in order to identify goals and plan improvements. 15 research institutions in 8 European countries are involved in the proposed project with the main objective to minimise medicine use in organic dairy herds through active and well planned AHW promotion and disease prevention. The project consists of 5 work packages, 4 of which comprise research activities building on current research projects, new applications across borders, exchange of knowledge, results and conclusions between participating countries, and adopting them to widely different contexts. International and national workshops facilitate this exchange. Focus areas are animal health planning, AHW assessment using animal based parameters and development of advisory systems and farmer groups. Epidemiological analyses of the effect on AHW from reduced medicine use and herd improvements are planned in all participating countries.

Duration 01/01/2007 - 31/10/2010
Website visit project website
Network CORE Organic
Call CORE-ORGANIC Pilot Call

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
Aarhus University - Faculty of Agricultural Sciences Coordinator Denmark
Duchy College United Kingdom
Georg-August-University Göttingen Germany
Ministry of Agriculture and Food - Norwegian Institute for Agricultural and Environmental Research Norway
Norwegian Veterinary Institute Norway
Research Institute of Organic Agriculture Austria
Research Institute of Organic Agriculture Switzerland
University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Vienna Austria
University of Veterinary Medicine Vienna Austria
University of Wales United Kingdom
Wageningen University & Research Netherlands