Global animal nutrition company Trouw Nutrition, part of Nutreco, has opened a new calf and beef research facility near Boxmeer in the Netherlands. The new site is equipped with state-of-the-art infrastructure and appliances, and will carry out advanced research into ruminant nutrition alongside Trouw's existing dairy cow facilities in Boxmeer and Burford, Canada.
The research farm has four main sections: a free stall for growing cattle; two calf rearing areas, one with individual calf housing and the other with group pens andautomatic feeders to monitor individual feeding behaviour; and a metabolism unit for physiological and digestibility studies of calves and larger growing cattle.
Knut Nesse, CEO of Nutreco and Professor Louise Fresco, president of the execuitve board at Wageningen University, opened the new facility at a ceremony attended by over 300 delegates from all over the world. The event included a two-day symposium of presentations from calf and beef nutrition scientists, tours of the research facilities and networking opportunities.
Professor Leo den Hartog, Trouw Nutrition R&D director, says: "A key trend in both dairy and beef production globally is the desire to gain a greater understanding of how to maximise the full genetic potential of the animal. Science steers us towards the start of life as the key period at which we can make significant gains in production.
"Our expanding research capacity is a recognition of these developments. By 2050 the world population is expected to grow by 30% and the demand for dairy and meat expected to double. Meeting this demand will be a challenge for the agricultural industry. This investment therefore plays a vital role in the development of new nutritional solutions that can tap into the recognised need to feed the world in a more efficient and sustainable way. The new facility increases the global innovation capability for Trouw Nutrition, adding to the five R&D centres already in use around the world.”