The Corona pandemic makes international travel and the planning of future trips difficult. For participants who are unable to attend the International Congress on the Breeding of Sheep and Goat in person, we would like to offer the possibility to participate digitally.
Together with the relevant associations (Confederation of German Sheep Breeding Associations, VDL; Federation of German Goat Breeders, BDZ) and the German Society for Animal Production (DGfZ), the BMEL is permanently following the situation caused by the Corona pandemic as well as trends in the changing overall conditions at global level, taking into account the recommendations of the WHO and authorities worldwide.
We can also learn lessons from the Corona pandemic in respect of animal husbandry, among other things. Therefore, we explicitly encourage you to submit contributions that refer to your experience with the current situation. We will keep you up to date on further developments through our website.
Dear participants of the International Congress on the Breeding of Sheep and Goats
With your participation and involvement, you have contributed significantly to the great success of the congress.
The abstracts of the oral presentations and posters will be published in a Special Issue of the Genetic Resources Journal and are therefore citable. A preliminary version is currently available at: https://sheepandgoats2020bonn.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Abstract-book-sheep-goats-.pdf
Following is a brief summary of the event:
Fuchtel: We do not wait for the future, we help to create it
BMEL hosts International Congress on the Breeding of Sheep and Goats
On October 15th and 16th, 2020, the International Congress on the Breeding of Sheep and Goats took place at the World Conference Center Bonn as a hybrid event. More than 300 participants from 40 countries could inform themselves through 120 contributions on current topics of breeding and keeping of small ruminants. The FAO also contributed to the program intensively.
The focus of the congress was on the breeding of sheep and goats and their characterization to enable a sustainable use of the available genetic resources. Animal health and the improvement of animal welfare were other important focuses of the congress. In addition to economic issues, relations and interactions between animal husbandry, sustainability and factors influencing the environment were discussed.
The diversity of breeds, and thus their characteristics and genetic heritage, results, among other things, from their adaptation to the most diverse environmental conditions. For this reason, the FAO supports gene banks for the conservation of genetic resources. Another important factor of biodiversity is, among others, the fact that grazing sheep and goats spread plant seeds.
An overview of the results:
- With the increasing drought of the recent years, characteristics of sheep and goat breeds accustomed to heat and drought can represent an important potential also in Germany.
- The potential for the reduction of climate-relevant gas emissions from small ruminants such as sheep and goats is, with 40% significantly higher than for example that for cattle.
- Breeding for resistance to diseases helps to reduce both the therapeutic and prophylactic use of drugs (in some cases also of antibiotics).
The communication of research results must be improved and increased in order to better link science, politics, farmers, fishermen, entrepreneurs and consumers, thus promoting innovation and development.
The German associations of sheep and goat breeders (VDL and BDZ), together with the breeding directors, will examine how the results of the congress can be incorporated into breeding and the breeding programs. The associations intend to set up working groups for this purpose. Characteristics and properties for the future should be outlined in a concept.
Thank You for your participation and contributions
On behalf of the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture
The Congress Team