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News 354 views last update:6 Aug 2012

Benefits of biological farming studied

Both animal welfare and environment profit from biological farming, two Dutch studies show.

The studies, conducted by Wageningen University and Research Centre, claim biological farming is better for animals and environment than conventional agriculture. Environmentally, energy use and greenhouse gas emission per hectare is lower with biological companies, the studies show.

Housing
Housing animals biologically causes more natural behaviour, especially in pigs and poultry, when compared to conventional methods. Biological pig and poultry farming are very different from conventional farming as the housing method allows the pigs to root and explore. In addition, no pig tails are cut as tailbiting – said to be caused by boredness – is less common. In pens being more spacious and straw-bedded, the animals are less aggressvie than their fellow pigs in smaller, plainer housing.

More biological meat sold
Coincidentally, figures were released in the Netherlands that in 2006 Dutch consumers bought about 5% more biological meat in comparison to 2005. Altogether, Dutch consumers paid €57.6 million for biologically produced meat. About 20.5% (equalling to €11.8 million) of that was for pork, 18.6% (€10.7 million) for poultry. Most money was spent on biologically produced beef.

Related website:
Wageningen University and Research Centre

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