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  • 1.
    Arvidsson Segerkvist, Katarina
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Brunsø, Karen
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Brønd Laursen, Klaus
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Cherono Schmidt Henriksen, Julie
    Økologisk Landsforening, Denmark.
    Elsmark, Jenny
    Svenskt Kött, Sweden.
    Esbjerg, Lars
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Hessle, Anna
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Holtz, Emma
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Karlsson, Anders H
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Lind, Ann-Kristina
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Lindahl, Cecilia
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Stenberg, Elin
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Strand, Theres
    Svenska Köttföretagen, Sweden.
    Tønning Tønnesen, Mathilde
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Bark, Linnea
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Åkesson, Ulrika
    Agroväst Livsmedel, Sweden.
    Consumer driven innovation towards improved beef and lamb meat quality: Partnership project summary2021Report (Other academic)
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  • 2.
    Churakov, Mikhail
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Silvera, Anna Maria
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Gussmann, Maya
    University of Copenhagen, Denmark.
    Peetz Nielsen, Per
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Parity and days in milk affect cubicle occupancy in dairy cows2021In: Applied Animal Behaviour Science, ISSN 0168-1591, E-ISSN 1872-9045, Vol. 244, article id 105494Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Modern dairy cattle farms are usually equipped with cubicle systems to provide cows with comfortable conditions for lying down and resting. Cows are free to choose any cubicle they want, but in reality, they do not distribute themselves uniformly throughout the barn. There are many factors that affect where a cow lies down, such as hierarchy of a cow, access to resources, cow traffic nearby, etc. In this study, we used real-time location system data from two commercial farms to examine patterns of cubicle occupancy in relation to parity and lactation stage. We summarized cubicle occupancy over several days and compared different areas of the barn. Our findings suggest that, in general, there was a higher occupancy of cubicles close to the feeding areas. High parity cows lay down more frequently in cubicles close to the milking area as opposed to first lactation cows that tend to occupy less busy areas of the barn. The overall conclusion is that cubicle occupancy is not uniform throughout the barn, and patterns related to parity and DIM are seen. This information can be important for future studies on spread of diseases and for management purposes. © 2021 The Authors

  • 3.
    Friman, Johanna
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Mjöfors, Kristina
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Salomon, Eva
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Presto Åkerfeldt, Magdalena
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Feeding silage to fattening pigs – effects on nitrogen utilization and ammonia losses from fresh manure2023In: Acta agriculturae Scandinavica. Section A, Animal science, ISSN 0906-4702, E-ISSN 1651-1972Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    ABSTRACTThis study evaluated the effect of feeding silage to pigs on nitrogen (N) utilization and ammonia (NH3) volatilization. In total, 128 Yorkshire ? Hampshire (30?110?kg) pigs were fed commercial feed (Control) or commercial feed mixed with dried, milled silage in pelleted form (Pellet-S), fresh, chopped silage (Silage-Ch) or intensively treated silage (Silage-Pr). Silage replaced 20% of the crude protein (g/kg). Diet affected daily N excretion, which was higher for pigs fed Silage-Ch and Silage-Pr than for pigs in the Pellet-S and Control treatments. Ammonium nitrogen (NH4-N) content in the manure and NH3 volatilization from fresh manure were higher for Control pigs than for pigs in the other treatments. Overall, these results show that pre-treatment of silage influences N utilization and excretion. Furthermore, the results indicate that feeding silage to pigs can reduce NH3 volatilization from fresh manure.

  • 4.
    Hansson, I
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Silvera, A
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Ren, K
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Woudstra, S
    University of Copenhagen, Sweden.
    Skarin, A
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Fikse, WF
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Peetz Nielsen, Per
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Rönnegård, L
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden; Dalarna University, Sweden.
    Cow characteristics associated with the variation in number of contacts between dairy cows2023In: Journal of Dairy Science, ISSN 0022-0302, E-ISSN 1525-3198, Vol. 106, no 4, p. 2685-Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In modern freestall barns where large groups of cows are housed together, the behavior displayed by herd mates can influence the welfare and production of other individuals. Therefore, understanding social interactions in groups of dairy cows is important to enhance herd management and optimize the outcomes of both animal health and welfare in the future. Many factors can affect the number of social contacts in a group. This study aimed to identify which characteristics of a cow are associated with the number of contacts it has with other group members in 2 different functional areas (feeding and resting area) to increase our understanding of the social behavior of dairy cows. Inside 2 herds housed in freestall barns with around 200 lactating cows each, cow positions were recorded with an ultra-wideband real-time location system collecting all cows' positions every second over 2 wk. Using the positioning data of the cows, we quantified the number of contacts between them, assuming that cows spending time in proximity to one another (within a distance of 2.5 m for at least 10 min per day) were interacting socially. We documented in which barn areas these interactions occurred and used linear mixed models to investigate if lactation stage, parity, breed, pregnancy status, estrus, udder health, and claw health affect the number of contacts. We found variation in the number of contacts a cow had between individuals in both functional areas. Cows in later lactation had more contacts in the feeding area than cows in early lactation. Furthermore, in one herd, higher parity cows had fewer contacts in the feeding area than first parity cows, and in the other herd, cows in third parity or higher had more contacts in the resting area. This study indicates that cow characteristics such as parity and days in milk are associated with the number of contacts a cow has daily to its herd mates and provides useful information for further research on social interactions of dairy cows. 

  • 5.
    Hartmann, Elke
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Rehn, Therese
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Winther Christensen, Janne
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Peetz Nielsen, Per
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    McGreevy, Paul
    University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia.
    From the horse’s perspective: Investigating attachment behaviour and the effect of training method on fear reactions and ease of handling—a pilot study2021In: Animals, E-ISSN 2076-2615, Vol. 11, no 2, article id 457Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The study investigated equine responses to novelty and handling, aiming to reveal whether horse–human relationships reflect criteria of an attachment bond. Twelve adult Standardbreds were subjected to a fear-eliciting test (novel objects presented close to two humans) and a handling test (being led passing novel objects) to study attachment-related behaviours and ease of handling. The tests were performed both before (pre-test) and after (post-test) horses had been trained by the same female handler (10 sessions of 15 min). Horses were assigned to three groups of four, each of which underwent different operant conditioning protocols: negative reinforcement (NR; pressure, release of lead, and whip tap signals) or combined NR with either positive reinforcement using food (PRf) or wither scratching (PRs). Results showed that neither familiarity of the person nor training method had a significant impact on the horses’ behavioural responses in the post-tests. However, horses showed decreased heart rates between pre-and post-tests, which may indicate habituation, an effect of training per se, or that the presence of the familiar trainer served to calm the horses during the challenging situations. There were large individual variations among the horses’ responses and further studies are needed to increase our understanding of horse–human relationships. © 2021 by the authors.

  • 6.
    Herlin, Anders
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Brunberg, Emma
    Animal Welfare Sweden, Sweden.
    Hultgren, Jan
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Högberg, Niclas
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Anna, Rydberg
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Skarin, Anna
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Animal welfare implications of digital tools for monitoring and management of cattle and sheep on pasture2021In: Animals, E-ISSN 2076-2615, Vol. 11, no 3, article id 829Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The opportunities for natural animal behaviours in pastures imply animal welfare benefits. Nevertheless, monitoring the animals can be challenging. The use of sensors, cameras, positioning equipment and unmanned aerial vehicles in large pastures has the potential to improve animal welfare surveillance. Directly or indirectly, sensors measure environmental factors together with the behaviour and physiological state of the animal, and deviations can trigger alarms for, e.g., disease, heat stress and imminent calving. Electronic positioning includes Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) for the recording of animals at fixed points. Positioning units (GPS) mounted on collars can determine animal movements over large areas, determine their habitat and, somewhat, health and welfare. In combination with other sensors, such units can give information that helps to evaluate the welfare of free-ranging animals. Drones equipped with cameras can also locate and count the animals, as well as herd them. Digitally defined virtual fences can keep animals within a predefined area without the use of physical barriers, relying on acoustic signals and weak electric shocks. Due to individual variations in learning ability, some individuals may be exposed to numerous electric shocks, which might compromise their welfare. More research and development are required, especially regarding the use of drones and virtual fences. © 2021 by the authors.

  • 7.
    Lind, Ann-Kristina
    et al.
    RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioscience and Materials, Agrifood and Bioscience.
    Lindahl, Cecilia
    RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioscience and Materials, Agrifood and Bioscience.
    Moocall – en sensor med koll på kalvningar2018Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    It may be a challenge for beef and dairy farmers to predict when a cow is close to calving, to move her to a calving pen in time and to properly monitor and assist the calving. The objective was to evaluate how a calving alert system, attached to the tail, affects the cow. The system monitors the tail’s movements, and the farmer is notified via a text message approximately one hour before calving. 

    A case-control and an interview study with farmers were carried out. In the case-control study, cow behaviour was observed during and after the procedure attaching the calving alert system on the tail. Controls were equally prepared, but the sensor was first attached and immediately removed again. The ethogram protocol contained for example back arching, tail lifting, fidgeting and kicking. 

    The case-control study had to be discontinued due to sensors causing damage on the tail. Results from the interview study shows that 80% of the interviewed farmers stated that the cows behaviour reaction was negative when the sensor was attached to the tail and that it lasted up to one hour. Almost all farmers had observed damages on the tails after using the sensor and 20% had observed such severe damage that amputation was necessary. 

    The studied sensor functioned well technically according to the interviews, but the observed tail damage indicates that the cows experienced discomfort by the sensor and that using the sensor is associated with welfare problems for the cows.

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  • 8.
    Lind, Ann-Kristina
    et al.
    RISE - Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioscience and Materials, Agrifood and Bioscience.
    Lindahl, Cecilia
    Åkerfeldt, Magdalena
    SLU, Sweden.
    Enkel rengöring av foderrörför bättre arbetsmiljö och djurhälsa2019Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Important for the farm's profitability is to have good animal health and high production with cost-effective efforts. The project has practical value for both animal, owners and industry, as poor hygienic quality in the feed has repercussions on animal health and production. The use of liquid feeding system for pigs is common in Sweden, but there is very little experience of the consequences when feed residues remain in the pipes in liquid feeding systems that are not cleaned between production cycles. The aim of the present study was to get a first indication of the feed hygiene quality, pig health and growth, effectiveness of the cleaning and farmers work environment, by investigating the effect of cleaning of the discharge pipes in liquid feeding systems, with a special cleaning tool designed for the purpose.

    The experiment was performed at a commercial piglet herd in Sweden and a total of 473 growing pigs were included in the study. At weaning (five weeks of age), the litters were moved from the farrowing unit to a growing unit. Feed samples were collected at three times throughout the experimental period. Six un-cleaned and six cleaned discharge pipes were selected for visual assessment of the pipes and collecting of feed samples. All pigs were individually monitored for diseases and injuries by the staff every day and if measures were made in the pens, this was noted in a protocol. The pigs were weighed two times during the study period to register growth rate.

    Content of yeasts, enterobacteriaceae and moulds in the liquid feed from the mixer tank did not exceed the recommended threshold values but pH was higher than recommended threshold pH for liquid feed in the mixer tank as well as in all the feed samples collected from the pipes at the different sampling occasions. There was no significant difference in pH between un-cleaned and cleaned pipes (p=0.951) or between sampling occasions (p=0.246). Occurrence of yeasts, enterobacteriaceae and moulds (log cfu/g) did not differ between treatments or sampling occasions (p>0.245 for all). Enterobacteriaceae occurred in all samples ranging from 3.6-6.0 log cfu/g. The pigs in the pens with cleaned pipes had a slower daily growth compared with the pigs in the pens with un-cleaned pipes (p=0.011).

    The farmer could stand in an upright position during the entire time of cleaning procedure. According to the farmer, it was easy to use the cleaning tool and that it could not be possible to clean the feeding pipes with only an ordinary high-pressure washer.

    Poor feed hygienic quality can cause diarrhoea in pigs, which can result in slower growth rate. Disease spread in animals due to lack of hygiene reduces animal welfare and production capacity, resulting in additional work, longer rearing times and increased veterinary costs. Therefore, careful and regular cleaning of the stable is necessary for successful production. Cleaning the feed pipes in pig stables has the potential to improve animal health by improving the hygienic quality of the feed, but more research is required in the field, in order to be able to investigate the long-term effect in the entire herd of cleaning the pipes.

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  • 9.
    Myrbeck, Åsa
    et al.
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Mjöfors, Kristina
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Tersmeden, Marianne
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Vattenflöden i djurstallar2021Report (Other academic)
    Abstract [en]

    Manure quality and quantity have been shown to change a lot through dilution from identified and diffuse water sources. Knowledge of the dry matter contents (DM) of the manure is needed for effective use of the manure as fertilizer and to avoid too high doses causing losses of nutrients to the surrounding water bodies. Based on this, water flow measurements were carried out at the five Swedish pilot farms. All water ending up in the manure storage was included. The measurement took note of drinking (indoor and outdoor), milk room (dishing etc), washing (stable, milk room, field equipment), feeding, staff areas and total consumption. The results were used for discussion on improving the handling of water in VERA, the Swedish calculation tool for manure quantity and quality on farms. The water amount from the different water categories differed between the animal categories, where dairy cows used in total 30-35 m3 per animal and year and the fatteners and sows around 8-10 m3 per animal and year. Out of the total water to the dairy cows, around 75-80% of the water was drinking water and the rest other technological water (e.g. cleaning of milk room, milking pit and dishes). For pigs the ratio was higher for drinking water, 95-almost 100 %. Here the largest amount of water was from wet foddering making up 80 % of the drinking water. Water through water cups per dairy cow amounted to around 25 m3 per year depending on if drinking water on pasture was included or not. This gives a daily consumption of 65-75 litres per animal and day which is a bit low compared to the literature. A concluding remark is that neither technical water (except for washing water at dairy farms) nor a variability in precipitation did have any major effect on the DM contents in slurry ex-storage. Instead, the water supply from faeces and urine was what determined the DM content. Additional water flow measurements on farms would provide data that should be used for generating improved default values for the calculation tools.

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  • 10.
    Peetz Nielsen, Per
    et al.
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Wredle, Ewa
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    How Does the Provision of Shade during Grazing Affect Heat Stress Experienced by Dairy Cows in Sweden?2023In: Animals, E-ISSN 2076-2615, Vol. 13, no 24, article id 3823Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Heat stress in dairy cows can cause an increase in body temperature and respiration rate, and a decreased feed intake leading to reduced production. Dairy cows are better at handling heat when they have access to shade. Therefore, this study aimed to determine the effects of providing shade to high-yielding dairy cattle during the summer in the Swedish climate. Twenty high-yielding Swedish Red dairy cows, held on pasture, were divided into two groups, one with access to shade (S) and one without (NS). Milk production was recorded daily and shade temperature and relative humidity were recorded at 10 min intervals at pasture. A major effect of heat stress was found in cows in early lactation in the NS group. In this group, a high mean temperature two days before and a high THI two days before affected the milk production negatively (p < 0.001), which was the same for the maximum temperature and maximum THI measured on the same day (p < 0.001). Increases in the mean temperature and THI two days before also affected milk production negatively (p < 0.05) for cows in early lactation in the S group, though to a lesser extent. This study suggests that dairy cows in early lactation benefit from access to shade during summer.

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  • 11.
    Petersen, S. O.
    et al.
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Ma, C.
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Hilgert, J. E.
    Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomy, Germany.
    Mjöfors, Kristina
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Sefeedpari, P.
    Wageningen University and Research, Netherlands.
    Amon, B.
    Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomy, Germany.
    Aarnink, A.
    Wageningen University and Research, Netherlands.
    Francó, B.
    BPC Instruments, Sweden.
    Dragoni, F.
    Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomy, Germany.
    Groenestein, K.
    Wageningen University and Research, Netherlands.
    Gyldenkærne, S.
    BPC Instruments, Sweden.
    Herrmann, C.
    Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Engineering and Bioeconomy, Germany.
    Hutchings, N. J.
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Kristensen, I. S.
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Liu, J.
    BPC Instruments, Sweden; Lund University, Sweden.
    Olesen, J. E.
    Aarhus University, Denmark.
    Rodhe, Lena
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    In-vitro method and model to estimate methane emissions from liquid manure management on pig and dairy farms in four countries2024In: Journal of Environmental Management, ISSN 0301-4797, E-ISSN 1095-8630, Vol. 353, article id 120233Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Methane (CH4) emissions from manure management on livestock farms are a key source of greenhouse gas emissions in some regions and for some production systems, and the opportunities for mitigation may be significant if emissions can be adequately documented. We investigated a method for estimating CH4 emissions from liquid manure (slurry) that is based on anaerobic incubation of slurry collected from commercial farms. Methane production rates were used to derive a parameter of the Arrhenius temperature response function, lnA', representing the CH4 production potential of the slurry at the time of sampling. Results were used for parameterization of an empirical model to estimate annual emissions with daily time steps, where CH4 emissions from individual sources (barns, outside storage tanks) can be calculated separately. A monitoring program was conducted in four countries, i.e., Denmark, Sweden, Germany and the Netherlands, during a 12-month period where slurry was sampled to represent barn and outside storage on finishing pig and dairy farms. Across the four countries, lnA' was higher in pig slurry compared to cattle slurry (p < 0.01), and higher in slurry from barns compared to outside storage (p < 0.01). In a separate evaluation of the incubation method, in-vitro CH4 production rates were comparable with in-situ emissions. The results indicate that lnA' in barns increases with slurry age, probably due to growth or adaptation of the methanogenic microbial community. Using lnA' values determined experimentally, empirical models with daily time steps were constructed for finishing pig and dairy farms and used for scenario analyses. Annual emissions from pig slurry were predicted to be 2.5 times higher than those from cattle slurry. Changing the frequency of slurry export from the barn on the model pig farm from 40 to 7 d intervals reduced total annual CH4 emissions by 46 %; this effect would be much less on cattle farms with natural ventilation. In a scenario with cattle slurry, the empirical model was compared with the current IPCC methodology. The seasonal dynamics were less pronounced, and annual CH4 emissions were lower than with the current methodology, which calls for further investigations. Country-specific models for individual animal categories and point sources could be a tool for assessing CH4 emissions and mitigation potentials at farm level. 

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  • 12.
    Ren, Keni
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Peetz Nielsen, Per
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Alam, Moudud
    Dalarna University, Sweden.
    Rönnegård, Lars
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden; Dalarna University, Sweden.
    Where do we find missing data in a commercial real-time location system? Evidence from 2 dairy farms2021In: JDS Communications, ISSN 2666-9102, Vol. 2, no 6, p. 345-350Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Real-time indoor positioning using ultra-wideband devices provides an opportunity for modern dairy farms to monitor the behavior of individual cows; however, missing data from these devices hinders reliable continuous monitoring and analysis of animal movement and social behavior. The objective of this study was to examine the data quality, in terms of missing data, in one commercially available ultra-wideband–based real-time location system for dairy cows. The focus was on detecting major obstacles, or sections, inside open freestall barns that resulted in increased levels of missing data. The study was conducted on 2 dairy farms with an existing commercial real-time location system. Position data were recorded for 6 full days from 69 cows on farm 1 and from 59 cows on farm 2. These data were used in subsequent analyses to determine the locations within the dairy barns where position data were missing for individual cows. The proportions of missing data were found to be evenly distributed within the 2 barns after fitting a linear mixed model with spatial smoothing to logit-transformed proportions (mean = 18% vs. 4% missing data for farm 1 and farm 2, respectively), with the exception of larger proportions of missing data along one of the walls on both farms. On farm 1, the variation between individual tags was large (range: 9–49%) compared with farm 2 (range: 12–38%). This greater individual variation of proportions of missing data indicates a potential problem with the individual tag, such as a battery malfunction or tag placement issue. Further research is needed to guide researchers in identifying problems relating to data capture problems in real-time monitoring systems on dairy farms. This is especially important when undertaking detailed analyses of animal movement and social interactions between animals.

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    Where do we find missing data
  • 13.
    Segerkvist, Katarina
    et al.
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Hansson, Helena
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Sonesson, Ulf
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Gunnarsson, Stefan
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    A systematic mapping of current literature on sustainability at farm-level in beef and lamb meat production2021In: Sustainability, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 13, no 5, article id 2488Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Beef and lamb meat production is associated with important cultural, economic and environmental impacts in most countries worldwide. However, it is also related with sustainability challenges. To enable cattle and sheep farming to develop in line with sustainability, existing knowledge need to be implemented and identified knowledge gaps filled. The purpose of this article was to systematically map the scientific literature on environmental, economic and social sustainability at farm-level beef and lamb meat production to identify knowledge gaps and to point to important future actions and areas of research. Papers published January 2000–August 2020 with a geographical origin in Europe, Northern America, and Australia-New Zealand were included. The systematic literature search resulted in a total of 1355 hits; however, after removing papers which were considered out of the scope of the study, and duplicate papers, only 22 and 11 papers related to beef and sheep farming, respectively were retained for further analysis. Of these, only 11 in total included all three sustainability dimensions. Several papers only mentioned one or two of the sustainability dimensions or put them in relation to that/those main dimension covered, thus limiting the extent to which possible synergies or tradeoffs between different sustainability aspects actually can be studied. This indicates a need for a more comprehensive approach when studying farm-level sustainability. Future research would benefit from a more holistic approach and include all dimensions of sustainability within the same study. Further, focus should also be on how to measure and assess sustainability aspects in a standardized way. © 2021 by the authors.

  • 14.
    Sindhøj, Erik
    et al.
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Lindahl, Cecilia
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Bark, Linnea
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Potential alternatives to high-concentration carbon dioxidestunning of pigs at slaughter2021In: Animal, ISSN 1751-7311, Vol. 15, no 3, article id 100164Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Using carbon dioxide (CO2) for stunning pigs at slaughter is common in Europe. The use of group stunning is amajor advantagewith CO2,which is donewithout restraining the pigs and with minimized human contact. However,high concentrations of CO2 have been known for decades to cause pain, fear and distress in pigs before lossof consciousness, and the stunning method is clearly associated with animal welfare concerns. This studyreviewed the scientific literature to find recent developments or evaluations of alternative methods that couldlead to the replacement of CO2 for stunning pigs at slaughter. Potential alternative methods found in the literaturewere described and then assessed to identify specific research and development needs for their further development.Only 15 empirical studies were found in the search of peer-reviewed literature since 2004, which is lessthan one per year. Furthermore, half of the studies focused on evaluatingmethods to improve high-concentrationCO2 stunning rather than an alternative to CO2. Since no clear alternative has emerged, nor a method to improveCO2 stunning, there is obviously a strong need to focus research and development to find solutions for improvinganimal welfare when stunning pigs at slaughter.

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    Sindhoj et al 2021_Review stunning pigs_In press
  • 15.
    Söderquist, Astrid
    et al.
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food. SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden; Linköping University, Sweden.
    Wallenbeck, Anna
    SLU Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Sweden.
    Lindahl, Cecilia
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Social Support in a Novel Situation Aimed for Stunning and Euthanasia of Pigs May Be Increased by Familiar Pigs—A Behavioural Study with Weaners2023In: Animals, E-ISSN 2076-2615, Vol. 13, no 3, article id 481Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The common method of stunning pigs using high concentration carbon dioxide prior to slaughter poses an animal welfare issue, as the gas is aversive. Proof of concept for using nitrogen gas encapsulated in high-expansion foam as an alternative non-aversive method for stunning pigs has recently been presented. However, the individually tested pigs showed distress-related responses to foam exposure, regardless of whether it was nitrogen- or air-filled. This study examined the effect of companionship from a familiar or unfamiliar pig on behaviours in 72 nine-weeks old pigs during exposure to air-filled foam. Escape attempts were observed by 75% of solitary pigs, 42% of pigs with unfamiliar conspecifics, and 33% of pigs with familiar conspecifics. Familiar pig pairs clearly preferred social contact during foam exposure, whereas this was not as clear in unfamiliar pig pairs, and their motivation for social contact could have multiple explanations. The results from this study highlight the importance of contact with conspecifics when studying animal welfare and suggest that familiarity between pigs is important for social support, thus emphasizing the importance of maintaining social groups to reduce distress in pigs at slaughter. © 2023 by the authors.

  • 16.
    Wimmler, C.
    et al.
    BOKU University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Austria.
    Vermeer, H. M.
    Wageningen University & Research, Netherlands.
    Leeb, C.
    BOKU University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Austria.
    Salomon, Eva
    RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, Bioeconomy and Health, Agriculture and Food.
    Andersen, H. M. -L
    Aarhus University, Sweden.
    Concrete outdoor runs for organic growing-finishing pigs – a legislative, ethological and environmental perspective2022In: Animal, ISSN 1751-7311, E-ISSN 1751-732X, Vol. 16, no 1, article id 100435Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Concrete Outdoor Runs (OUTRUNs) are a characteristic part of organic pig housing. They must allow species-specific behaviours such as rooting and elimination, as explicitly required by organic legislation of the European Union (EU). However, OUTRUN design often fails to fulfil behavioural needs, and excreta can cover large parts of the OUTRUN leading to poor pen hygiene and associated ammonia (NH3) emissions. This review integrates legislative, ethological and environmental requirements for OUTRUNs for organic growing-finishing pigs. While EU regulations specify some welfare-related standards for OUTRUNs (e.g. minimal space allowance), national and private standards interpret some aspects differently, e.g. the proportion of roofed and slatted floor area. Furthermore, reducing NH3 emissions is equally a challenge for organic systems, even though EU legislation does not explicitly refer to OUTRUNs. Depending on the actual use of the OUTRUN for elimination, higher space allowance compared to conventional production norms increases the potential for a large NH3-emitting surface. The design of pen features (e.g. roof, floor, enrichment) can encourage pigs to separate functional areas and consequently reduce the elimination area and associated NH3 emissions. While providing the main lying area indoors, resting outdoors should be possible for sub-groups during the day. A roof protects pigs and resources (e.g. bedding) from adverse weather, but the effect on pig welfare and NH3 emissions is site-specific. A floor design that ensures practicable manure removal and drainage is most important to reduce emissions. Providing opportunities for exploring and rooting in the OUTRUN has particular relevance for pigs’ behavioural needs and can improve pen hygiene by reducing the elimination area. Cooling facilities are increasingly important to prevent heat stress and its detrimental effects on welfare and pen hygiene. Finally, practicability for farmers needs to be ensured for all resources provided in OUTRUNs, as good management is crucial. Research gaps emerge regarding the association between soiling and NH3 and the influence of certain pen features (shape, roof, feeder location, pen partitions and wet areas) on pig behaviour and soiling.

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