Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture presents Livestock Husbandry Strategy

Livestock husbandry in Germany has a future. This is made clear by the current Livestock Husbandry Strategy issued by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture. The strategy maps out the path for livestock husbandry that can face the future and is sustainable, giving farmers the necessary planning security and improving livestock-farming conditions across a broad front.

Livestock farming has been further developed continuously in recent years, with the involvement of science, research, vocational training and consultancy. Improvements have been achieved in livestock housing and in technology used in livestock’s living areas, in the development of meaningful animal-health parameters, reduced use of antibiotics and also in efficiency of use of feed and of space. Nevertheless livestock husbandry continues to face major challenges. For instance, there is focus on the issue of demand for space, the mode of animal husbandry used, the feeding of livestock, non-curative interventions, use of antibiotics and emissions generated in animal farming. Meanwhile international competition is becoming more intense and the livestock farmers require security and a predictable basis for planning.

The task of politics is to set up a framework, enabling production procedures accepted by society to be harmonised with economic viability. The Livestock Husbandry Strategy highlights the path for animal cultivation that is equipped for the future, taking into account animal and environment protection, as well as quality in production and a market orientation. Livestock farmers should be given orientation for the long-term. Through a Federal Programme on Sustainable Livestock Husbandry, innovations are to be developed and transferred into agricultural practice. Accordingly, in the coming years' the livestock housing of the future' is to emerge. This is flanked by the agricultural funding programme that provides financial backing to individual businesses' investments in new builds and refurbishments of livestock housing. The goal in doing this is to strengthen livestock farmers' position in quality-based competition.

The strategy was developed in the staff unit especially set up for the purpose at the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture. The process was given support by a high-calibre external team of advisors drawn from science, politics and experts on the various specialist subjects. The proposals made by the Scientific Advisory Board on Agricultural Policy and also by the circle of specialist competence on animal wellbeing were channelled into the strategy as important elements. As regards the details in the Livestock Husbandry Strategy’s individual areas of action, the dialogue now begins with the livestock farmers, the industry as a whole, and also Germany's Federal States and interest groups.

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