European sheep project asks farmers for their biggest bugbear

A European sheep network is calling on farmers and others in the industry to share their challenges and needs in a bid to improve flock health, nutrition and management practices.

EuroSheep, which has partners in eight countries including Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC), has created a survey to collect the common nutrition and health challenges faced by sheep farmers and producers.

Once the biggest challenges have been identified, the network will collect and develop solutions, best practices, and tips and tricks which answer and reflect what sheep producers in Europe need. These will then be shared through national and international workshops, events and webinars.

Dr. Claire Morgan-Davies, a livestock systems scientist at SRUC’s Hill & Mountain Research Centre, said: “It is really important for EuroSheep to gather the views of the sheep industry at a European level.

“The first step of the project is to identify the main challenges farmers and producers face, and the needs they have, in terms of nutrition and health in their flocks.

“We can then address these and provide solutions to improve flock profitability.”

EuroSheep is funded by Horizon 2020 – the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme – and involves partners in Ireland, UK, Spain, France, Italy, Hungary, Greece and Turkey, but is open to all countries, stakeholders and sheep producers.

The objective of EuroSheep is to exchange existing knowledge between stakeholders at all stages of the supply chain in EU and Turkish sheep production, focusing on flock health management and nutrition management.

It held its first project meeting in Thessaloniki, Greece, at the end of January, where the partners devised the work plan for the next three years.

The survey, will take around 20 minutes, and can be completed online.