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Review article2023Peer reviewedOpen access

Farmers' Perspectives of the Benefits and Risks in Precision Livestock Farming in the EU Pig and Poultry Sectors

Kopler, Idan; Marchaim, Uri; Tikasz, Ildiko E.; Opalinski, Sebastian; Kokin, Eugen; Mallinger, Kevin; Neubauer, Thomas; Gunnarsson, Stefan; Soerensen, Claus; Phillips, Clive J. C.; Banhazi, Thomas

Abstract

Simple Summary Smart farming is a concept of agricultural innovation that combines technological, social, economic and institutional changes. It employs novel practices of technologies and farm management at various levels (specifically with a focus on the system perspective) and scales of agricultural production, helping the industry meet the challenges stemming from immense food production demands, environmental impact mitigation and reductions in the workforce. Precision Livestock Farming (PLF) systems will help the industry meet consumer expectations for more environmentally and welfare-friendly production. However, the overwhelming majority of these new technologies originate from outside the farm sector. The adoption of new technologies is affected by the development, dissemination and application of new methodologies, technologies and regulations at the farm level, as well as quantified business models. Subsequently, the utilization of PLF in the pig and especially the poultry sectors should be advocated (the latter due to the foreseen increase in meat production). Therefore, more significant research efforts than those that currently exist are mainly required in the poultry industry. The investigation of farmers' attitudes and concerns about the acceptance of technological solutions in the livestock sector should be integrally incorporated into any technological development.Abstract More efficient livestock production systems are necessary, considering that only 41% of global meat demand will be met by 2050. Moreover, the COVID-19 pandemic crisis has clearly illustrated the necessity of building sustainable and stable agri-food systems. Precision Livestock Farming (PLF) offers the continuous capacity of agriculture to contribute to overall human and animal welfare by providing sufficient goods and services through the application of technical innovations like digitalization. However, adopting new technologies is a challenging issue for farmers, extension services, agri-business and policymakers. We present a review of operational concepts and technological solutions in the pig and poultry sectors, as reflected in 41 and 16 European projects from the last decade, respectively. The European trend of increasing broiler-meat production, which is soon to outpace pork, stresses the need for more outstanding research efforts in the poultry industry. We further present a review of farmers' attitudes and obstacles to the acceptance of technological solutions in the pig and poultry sectors using examples and lessons learned from recent European projects. Despite the low resonance at the research level, the investigation of farmers' attitudes and concerns regarding the acceptance of technological solutions in the livestock sector should be incorporated into any technological development.

Keywords

PLF; ICT; livestock; technology-adoption; farmers' engagement; farmers' adoption; animal welfare; digitalization

Published in

Animals
2023, Volume: 13, number: 18, article number: 2868
Publisher: MDPI

    Sustainable Development Goals

    End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
    Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Animal and Dairy Science

    Publication identifier

    DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/ani13182868

    Permanent link to this page (URI)

    https://res.slu.se/id/publ/126475