Austrian company Delacon - a pioneer in the production and marketing of phytogenic feed additives - brought 250 people together at their Performing Nature Symposium in Greece. On the beautiful island of Crete, the first day of the symposium was full of talks about pigs, poultry, and why a Plan B is important.
Company President Helmut Dedl officially opened the symposium by briefly looking back on the 30 years that Delacon has existed. Delacon is a small company with about 70 employees, however, it stands out because of their long history in phytogenics and essential oils and their current strong R&D focus.
"We are very careful in our claims," said Dedl, adding that the company spends 10% of their turnover in research activities and trials.
Prof. John Hodges from Austria kicked off the speaker session by addressing "boundaries in animal production". Being a animal geneticist himself, he stressed that the agricultural sector should be careful in the application of GM crops and animal cloning. He explained that some boundaries are vital (ancient) whereas others may be less vital. This should be taken into account when "playing with nature".
Hodges believes that we are also too focused on making current production systems more efficient instead of having a plan B in mind. He advocates increasing the support for small rural farmers. "This way, we might have more change in safeguarding future world food supplies instead of letting mega firms grow even bigger."
Having a Plan B is needed because we have reached the green plateau regarding the use of fertilizer in crops. "I think GM crops are not the silver bullet, relying on them to feed the world is too tricky," said Hodges.
Back to News Headlines