The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR) is accepting applications through August 2, 2017, for its Accelerating Advances in Animal Welfare program, the first initiative within the FFAR Protein Challenge. $2 million is available!
Research is critical to progress in this field, as changes to animal production practices may impact animal physiology, may require large-scale alterations in animal housing and may have environmental and economic impacts that extend beyond the farm or production facility.
- Identification of quantitative trait loci and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP’s) that may assist primary breeders in selection for pro-welfare traits (e.g. bone strength) while maintaining egg quality
- Development of dietary formulations/additives for improved bone strength
- Research on microbiome/gut health and bone density
- Improved housing design (perch design, materials and placement, tier height, ramp angle, etc.)
- Improved rearing conditions (pullet housing design and management)
2) Development of alternatives to castration that provide for the piglet’s well-being and maintain pork quality. FFAR is committed to supporting science-based approaches to this issue, including:
- Selective breeding, or gene-editing, for production of animals with low physiological levels of androstenone and skatole
- Chemical interference with the production of androstenone and skatole hormones that cause boar taint
- Mechanical or genetic sex-selection of sperm (selection for female-only offspring)