On the first week of September, the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP) held its 73rd Annual meeting in the beautiful city of Porto in Portugal. The general theme of the event was “Farming for carbon neutral livestock production systems: putting science into practice”. Hankkija Finnish Feed Innovations contributed to the event with two presentations on the benefits of the resin acid -based Progres® on fish, shrimps, and poultry.

The Porto city is situated by the river Douro. It is the capital of the Porto District, with 1.7 million people living in the metropolitan area. However, the historic city centre has maintained its character and architecture, and has been nominated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

The event took place at the Alfândega Congress Centre, which is an old and beautifully renovated Customs House. It has on several years been nominated as the Best Congress Centre in Portugal.

EAAP-conferences have an exceptionally broad perspective on Animal Science, from animal feeding, physiology and genetics to climate control, and supporting the career of young scientists. Promoting the welfare of farm animals and the conservation of the rural environment have been listed among the targets of the European Federation of Animal Science. This year, the topic of the Plenary Session was “The coexistence of wildlife and livestock”. The plenary lection was recorded, and it is available at the EAAP Channel in YouTube.

Traditional Portuguese livestock breeds, such as the Bisaro pig, were well-presented at the exhibition area.

Networking during coffee-breaks and social events is an important part of scientific meetings.

Hankkija FFI’s R&D Manager Hannele Kettunen gave two presentations, both on Wed 7th September. The first, titled ‘Dietary tall oil fatty acids with resin acids improve the performance of Asian seabass and white shrimp’, showed significantly improved performance of these two aquatic species by the dietary amendment of Progres®. Before these trials, there was no information on the effect of dietary Progres® on aquatic species. In these studies, conducted at the University of Kasetsart, Thailand, Progres® was fed to white shrimps at 0, 0.5, or 1.0 kg/ton, and to Asian seabass at 0, 0.35, 0.5, or 1.0 kg/ton. For both species, the growth rate and FCR were significantly and dose-dependently improved by Progres® amendment. Progres® appears to be a very promising feed material for aquaculture species.

The second presentation, titled ‘Effects of dietary tall oil fatty acids on broiler performance and intestinal immunology‘ compared the effects of Progres® and the antibiotic growth promoter Lincomycin on the performance and intestinal condition of Ross 308 broiler chickens. The experiment was conducted at the trial facility of ARASS in Pakistan. Although antibiotic growth promoters have been banned in the EU, the antibiotic resistance remains a global problem. The study showed that the performance of broilers given Progres® at either 0.5 or 1.0 kg/ton of feed was equal to birds given Lincomycin 4.4% at 150g/ton. Furthermore, the litter stayed dryer in Progres®-treatments, and the density of inflammation-associated CD3+ T-lymphocytes was lower in the ileal and duodenal tissue of Progres®-fed birds than in the Lincomycin group. The study suggests, as also previously seen, that dietary Progres®-amendment improves the intestinal condition of poultry, and the effect comes with performance benefits to farm animals. With in-feed Progres®, it may be possible to reduce the use of antibiotic growth promoters even in areas of high background risk.