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Organic Beef Production with Emphasis on Welfare, Health and Product Quality

Nielsen, Ph.D. student Bea Klinzing (2003) Organic Beef Production with Emphasis on Welfare, Health and Product Quality. Paper at: European Association of Animal Production, Rome, Italy, 31 August - 3 September 2003. [Unpublished]

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Organic beef production in Europe is based on grazing in the summertime and feeding of minimum 60% of roughage during whole the year. Although these recommendations should improve health and welfare several aspects can give problems in organic beef production systems. This paper gives an overview of welfare, health and product quality in organic beef production with emphasis on organic steer production based on dairy breed bull calves. A short overview of different production systems is given with emphasis on the effect on health, and welfare. Feeding aspects are discussed and farm studies have shown that organic steer production is based on high amounts of roughages, and only small amounts of cereals are used compared to a conventional production of bulls and calves. Fattening of organic steers may result in metabolic disorders due to sudden change in feed ration from a ration with high roughage content to high cereal content. Aspects concerning to the system are discussed. Farm studies indicate a general good health and welfare in organic steer production system judged from subjective monthly observations. On pasture parasite infections may be the primary factor with effect on health and productivity in organic beef production. Young calves and marginal grazing areas are the two major fields requesting focus. The effect of castration on health and welfare and the effect of castration age and method is discussed.

EPrint Type:Conference paper, poster, etc.
Type of presentation:Paper
Keywords:bioactive forages; castration; organic farming
Subjects: Animal husbandry > Production systems > Beef cattle
Research affiliation: Denmark > DARCOF II (2000-2005) > II. 3 (PROSBIO) Production of steers and use of bioactive forages
Deposited By: Thamsborg, Professor Stig Milan
ID Code:1405
Deposited On:28 Oct 2003
Last Modified:12 Apr 2010 07:28
Document Language:English
Refereed:Not peer-reviewed

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