Some new sponsors have recently been added to our sponsor list. One of them is the Province of Antwerp. Their representative, Mr. Ludwig Caluwé, will give the opening speech on our first conference day.
The Province of Antwerp joins the EBA conference as a silver sponsor. In its vision and policy on agriculture the Province aims to develop and stimulate sustainable agriculture as base of an innovative economic sector, the agrofood business complex, including regional brand products and greenhouse production. Strategic focus is on three objectives: knowledge dissemination, ameliorating rural space and enhancing public support. Relative instruments are within the scope of provincial legislation.
A good example is the Experimental Poultry Centre, where hens and broilers cackle away merrily. And rightly so, as they are staying in ultra-modern stalls with climate control and feed and water regulation systems. It is the perfect setting for researching animal welfare, job efficiency, environmental conservation and energy efficiency. The results of this study teach poultry farmers how to achieve higher efficiency and sustainability levels regarding chicken meat and egg production. The results are highly appreciated across the globe. The Experimental Poultry Centre has excellent international contacts through the World’s Poultry Science Association.
Another example is De Hooibeekhoeve, where they teach you everything about dairy cattle and forage crops. Not only does it house dairy and young cattle, it also conducts research. Feed, housing, well-being, fertility and antibiotics are examined in the stables. In the fields they research fertilization, soil and forage crops. The purpose of all these tests is making dairy farming sustainable on economic, ecological and social level. De Hooibeekhoeve shares its knowledge with farmers, students and international partners, and it is regularly visited by foreign delegations. Furthermore, it is a partner and pioneer in all kinds of projects including fodder trials and cultivation techniques.