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Animal Health, Welfare and Nutrition

Blichers Allé
Postbox 50
DK-8830 Tjeletel:+45  8999 1900
fax:+45  8999 1166
[email protected]

Research Centre Foulum

Head of research unit:  Klaus Lřnne Ingvartsen


The research themes at our department comprise feed composition and quality, animal nutrition, digestion and metabolism of nutrients, growth and lactation physiology, reproduction, immunology, disease mechanisms, bio-markers, disease prevention, animal behaviour and adaptability, stress biology, production and health management including animal production and health economy.

The aim is to develop sustainable concepts for animal production by which high efficiency can be maintained without compromising animal health and welfare, product quality and safety and the surrounding environment.

Our Department conducts studies on nutrition, management, and the influence of various production systems on resource management, environmental load, production quantity and quality, reproduction and animal health and welfare. The provided knowledge is used to obtain overall nutrient balance and to improve the nutritional and environmental conditions for animal production, reproduction, health, welfare and the nutritive quality of animal products. Through research in animal immunology and disease mechanisms as well as in production diseases and interaction with genotype, nutrition, behaviour, management and production systems, we aim at improving animal health and disease resistance. We study the animals’ health and their behavioural needs in interaction with production environment and production factors. Our knowledge on the animal behavioural needs and adaptability is implemented in new production systems and facilities as well as improvement of existing production systems. We develop methods for assessment of animal welfare in commercial livestock herds as well as methods and models for health economic evaluations. We develop animal models to study nutrient metabolism and utilization, disease mechanisms, reproduction, human physiology and human medicine. Our Department focuses on international research collaboration and domestic presentation of research based knowledge in a constructive dialogue with the agricultural sector, public authorities and society about animal and product related issues.


We want to improve production, management and nutritional conditions for the animal production, reproduction, health and welfare without compromising the surrounding environment and economic conditions. This is ensured through basic and applied research into feed value and quality, impact and utilization of nutrients in the organism and the interaction with the microflora in the digestive tract. We also do research into disease prevention, disease mechanisms and bio-markers as well as the animal behavioural needs, stress biology and their adaptability with the purpose of developing health, reproduction and welfare strategies; furthermore, we work on the development of methods and tools for production and health management in herds, considering an environmental and economically sustainable production at the same time.

The obtained knowledge is used for counselling and guidance about sustainable animal farming to authorities and producers. The expertise of our scientists is also applied to the education of Bachelor, Master and PhD-students.


Our Department aims at being among the leading research institutions within our core areas: feed quality, nutrition and production physiology, disease mechanisms and
-prevention, behaviour and stress biology and herd health and production management. Through our research we will provide new knowledge and know-how that are capable of meeting the future requirements for a responsible animal farming in which welfare, environmental impact and sustainable production are compatible elements. Low medicine usage, high nutritional food quality, high food safety and low environmental impact are among the main objectives of our Department.