Nothing can stop international dialogue in animal production: the first virtual pig summit, the 'Sino-European Pig Summit Webinar', took place on 11 May. At the invitation of DLG-International GmbH and the European Pig Producers (EPP) club, almost 200 farmers and experts from Germany, France, Spain, Denmark, South Africa, the United States, Russia, Thailand, Vietnam and another 17 countries took part in the virtual summit. The live broadcast participants also included media representatives from nine countries.
Current challenges and opportunities within the industry were presented in short contributions and discussed between the participants during the approximately three-hour webinar. The participants from outside of China were interested to hear how China has bounced back from the shock of the recent COVID-19 and African swine fever (ASF) pandemics and how Chinese pig farms are planning to rebuild/restart. The explanations given by Dr Ma Chuang, General Secretary of the China Veterinary Association, clearly showed that this reconstruction affects the entire value added chain and that good progress has been made. In restructuring the farms to move away from small-scale backyard production to professionally managed, large farming operations, there is great interest in strategies and experience from Europe in terms of biosafety and hygiene concepts.
In short presentations, experts from the export-oriented 'Beijing Feeding Group' explained the concepts and innovations of Chinese feed companies. As a representative of German companies, SANO China shared the story of its success in cross-border development in this context and is seen as a positive example of foreign companies that have gained a foothold in China.
In his presentation, Sven Häuser of the DLG Competence Center Agriculture provided an overview of pig number and producer price developments in Europe and interpreted their recent shifts in the course of the ASF and COVID-19 outbreaks. As an experienced pig breeder and Topigs nucleus operator, EPP President Gert van Beek showed which biosafety standards apply on his farm and how he is meeting the current challenges. His view is that animal health, animal welfare, environmental protection and economy have to be brought into line with each other and communicated to the general public. Only this will enable farms to develop sustainably at their respective locations.
Please find the presentations of all speakers here:
- Development and Outlook of EU pig production during and after Covid-19 disease
Sven Häuser, DLG e.V.
- Current Challenges for pig producers in the EU – what can we learn from each other?
Gert van Beek - Pig Farmer in NL and President of European Pig Producers (EPP)
- Pork Production after ASF & Covid-19: Consequences for the future pig farm structure and the way of production in China
- The Effects of Double Epidemics on Livestock and Solutions to it
- The preparation of the feed industry — Meet the higher standards of Chinese pig farms
The Chinese are already undertaking intensive preparations for the period following the pandemic and are looking forward to the second instalment of 'EuroTier China' from 7 to 9 September 2020 in Chengdu – hopefully once again with lots of exhibitors and participants from Europe in order to switch from virtual to real exchange (https://eurotierchina.com/).
Due to global restrictions with regards to Corona Pandemic the EPP board decided after consideration of the current developments to postpone the EPP-Congress 2020. Health and concerns of our members and participants are important for us, therefore the board made this decision unanimously.
The annual event of the European Pig Producers club (EPP) was planned from 9 - 11 June 2020 in Biddinghuizen, the Netherlands. Under the topic “Full Chances ahead” the EPP Dutch branch created an interesting program about using current challenges in order to find future chances.
It was January 24, 1990 in Denmark when a group of international pig farmers founded the European Pig Producers Club on the initiative of DLG during an agricultural fair in Herning.
Four presidents in 30 years
The network, founded in 1990 with 25 members from 5 countries, has developed into an independent organization with over 600 members from more than 20 countries and 11 national branches.
EPP Vice President Taru Antikainen (Finland) participated in the Feed Additives Congress 25th and 26th September 2019 in Amsterdam and was part of a panel discussion about the present challenges in livestock and aqua production. The challenges in all areas of meat production seems to be the same…
EPP continues to grow and is now present also in the African continent! President Gert van Beek officially welcomes 10 new EPP-Members during the yearly sappo/AGM conference in South Africa as guest speaker.
Finland's Taru Antikainen was elected as the new EPP vice president by members at the general meeting of the European Pig Producers (EPP) e.V. on June 7th 2019 in Landshut. She therefore succeeds the chairman of the German EPP Group, Jürgen Winkelmann, who no longer ran for a further term in office last year.
For the first time in the almost 30-year history of the association, the Managing Board of the European Pig Producers (EPP) e.V. met from 13-15 March 2018 in Finland. In addition to working through the agenda, a visit to a pig farm and a large slaughterhouse and consulting company were scheduled.
The inaugural appearance of representatives from the South African Pork Producers’ Organisation (SAPPO) at the 2018 EPP Congress in Switzerland recently prompted a three-day reciprocal visit by the EPP to the Johannesburg / Praetoria region.
During this year’s Cattle & Pig Event at EuroTier 2018 our former president Erik Thijssen was honored by DLG president Hubertus Paetow. For his “candid, communicative and selfless nature” Erik Thijssen was awarded with the DLG silver medal for international relationship. Over his nine years of presidency countries like Ireland, Finland and Switzerland joined EPP alongside 80 new members. To Paetow, this indicates the success of Thijssen’s work.
As EPP / Pig farmers we are already involved since the first outbreak years ago. Till last week it enters our nearby region it seems the rest of world is awakening. This could help us to control the challenge, and we should take that opportunity with both hands.
At the General Assembly of the European Pig Producers (EPP) e.V. in Sursee (Switzerland) on 1 June 2018, the members elected Gert van Beek (51) from the Netherlands as their new President. He won the election in a secret ballot ahead of his fellow candidate Hugh McReynolds (56) from Ireland and thus succeeds Erik Thijssen, who had headed the Club for the last nine years.
During a week-long study trip from 17 – 24 September 2017 to the Midwest, 32 members of the EPP gained some interesting insights into pig production in the US. The group visited farms in Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin to share information and experiences with famers in these regions.