Project without external funding

Status Quo of animal health in organic animal husbandry - conclusions and options for action in agricultural politics (Statusbericht Tiergesundheit)

Project Details
Project duration: 11/200304/2004


Based on a literature review a meta-analysis on the
current knowledge of the animal health situation in organic livestock
farming was carried out. The following diseases were taken into focus:
mastitis, reproductive, metabolic and claw disorders of dairy cows,
specific diseases of pigs and poultry and problems due to parasites. The
results of the literature analysis as well as the conclusions were
discussed in an expert panel.

The results showed that the current health
situation in organic livestock production is comparable to the situation
on conventional farms. Levels of diseases are high, regardless of the
production method. Differences between farming enterprises can be
considered higher than differences between the organic and the
conventional farming system. The biggest reason for the variation in
relation to disease occurrence are deficits in the farm management.

Limited capacities of time and finances as well as structural problems
impede efforts to improve the animal health situation at the farm level.
Various initiatives working on improving the situation have not shown
satisfactory results so far.
Therefore the agricultural policy is in
demand to lead the right direction, to create a satisfying system of
controls and to support and stimulate initiatives working for a good
animal health status. Organic farming has the potential to set an
example for others in making a genuine effort to establish a high animal
health status. Nevertheless, taking into account all the different
relevant aspects it can be concluded that the current situation can only
be improved if a complete change of direction is initiated. Reaching
results instead of applying methods or converting regulations should be
the main focus of this new approach. Under the current circumstances
there are only very few options for organic farming to hold its ground
against the pressure of minimising production costs and working time as
well as against the competition for productivity. To reach this goal,
the support of the agricultural policy is required.

Research Areas

Last updated on 2019-05-07 at 16:46