85 years of knowledge in one database

Publication date: 05-01-2022

Since 1934, SFR has been conducting nutritional research in dairy, poultry, and swine. The data collected in the last 10 years have been merged into one big database. Due to this combination, various connections and trends can be evaluated. Connections and insights that cannot be evaluated with a single study because the study then takes too long or becomes too expensive.

In more than 85 years, SFR has completed various experiments. A lot of data was collected in all these studies. The database contains data of the last ten years of the animal categories present on the farm: poultry, dairy, and swine. Because studies are still being carried out, the database is growing daily. This data has been collected during the performance of scientific research and is therefore of high quality.

What data is in the database? In addition to the animal characteristics, like genetic information, age and production stage, there are also production data available. For example, milk production, number of eggs, slaughter weight and carcass characteristics and the diseases and antibiotic treatments are registered. Examples are animal weights in the different (growth) stages, feed intakes, muscle thickness. Also scores of manure(consistence), feathers and footpad are available. The database contains 55.000 weekly averages of milk productions, including fat, protein, and lactose analyses. But also 31.000 egg counts 66.000 daily weights of the broiler chickens. Or, for example, 8.500 parities of sows, but also the slaughter weights of 68.000 fattening pigs.

What makes this database unique is that the composition of nutrients and raw materials is known in detail for all feeds used in the experiments. As a result, the performance of the animals can be linked to their nutrient intake and comparisons can be made at nutrient level between individuals and groups of animals.

Our database has already provided a lot of valuable information for the different production sectors. For example, we have determined the optimal weight of gilts at insemination, and the data have confirmed that the larger the litter, the greater the variation in litter weights.

Based on all our experiments on dairy cows, we have mapped out the total dry matter intake per lactation day, divided into roughage and concentrate intake. These are examples of information that we can use to identify and answer today’s social issues with our database.

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