THE NETHERLANDS - Visitor numbers yesterday (21 May), the second day of the VIV Europe trade show for the livestock sector were even higher than the first day, perhaps attracted by a strong conference programme as well as the chance to network with innovators in the sector. Jackie Linden reports.
More than 8,300 people visited the exhibition on the second day, according to the VIV Europe organisers. Added to the first day count of more than 7,300, the total for the first two days exceeds 15,600.
Half of the visitors are from Western Europe - around half of them from the Netherlands - with Eastern Europe (15 per cent), Middle East (14 per cent) and Asia (nine per cent) also well represented.
The largest group by sector among visitors is poultry farming (23 per cent), with strong representation too from companies involved with feed ingredients, additives and animal health companies (20 per cent). and equipment suppliers (nine per cent).
Almost 90 per cent of the visitors said they were involved in the poultry sector, 40 per cent in pigs, 34 per cent in beef and veal, 32 per cent in dairy and 22 per cent in fish/seafood.
Perhaps reflecting an improving economic picture for the sectors represented at the show, almost 40 per cent of the visitors revealed that they had the intention to invest in their business.
They gave their interests as those in the following sectors: feed equipment and additives, animal health, animal breeding, housing & farm equipment, egg handling & processing and meat processing equipment.
A strong conference programme on a wide range of topics attracted 562 visits on the second day of the show, making a total of more than 1,100 in total so far.
Dutch Make Progress in Reducing Antibiotic Usage
Great progress is being made in the Netherlands towards its declared aim of reducing the use of antibiotics in livestock and poultry production. This was the main message Dr Hetty van Beers of the Dutch animal health authority told a special conference at VIV Europe yesterday, 21 May.
National results are due to be published in June and they are expected to show a 50 to 60 per cent reduction in antibiotic usage in 2013 compared to the start of the campaign in 2007. The government target of 70 per cent reduction by 2015 looks as if it will be hard to achieve but some sectors of the animal protein industry have been successful and goals will now be set for each sector.
Among the options for further reducing antibiotics from poultry production involves early feeding of chicks, giving nutrients to chicks as soon as they have hatched. Carla van der Pol from HatchTech told the conference about experiments that have shown that this early access to feed improves the birds' health and growth. One trial showed that early access to a special nutritional supplement were better able to withstand an experimental coccidiosis challenge later. The nutrients in the special early feed function as immuno-modulators while the feed also helps establish a healthy gut microflora.
HatchTech's HatchCare system as well as Patio and X-Treck from Vencomatic are demosntrated at VIV Europe - all three systems are based on the concept of allowing chicks access to feed and water right after hatching.
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