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Titanic evening rounds-off EAAP2016 in style

Delegates at this year’s EAAP conference have enjoyed a spectacular evening at one of Belfast’s most famous visitor attracts.

Almost 800 attendees gathered experienced an unforgettable gala dinner at Belfast’s iconic Titanic Exhibition Centre, built in honour of the famous ship which was built in the city.

As well as getting to sample some of Northern Ireland’s finest food in the centre’s Titanic-inspired dining room, delegates were treated to a special tour of the centre, which has recently been crowned one of the world’s top tourist attractions.

The fascinating exhibition showcases the craftsmanship and skills which go into shipbuilding, and commemorates the people who lost their lives on the ship’s tragic voyage.

As the final social event of EAAP2016, the conference’s organisers used the opportunity to express their thanks to delegates for making the event such a special one.

Sinclair Mayne, head of the conference’s organising committee, said it had been a huge privilege to showcase Northern Ireland agriculture to so many delegates from almost 60 countries.

“We have been hugely proud to welcome you all here to see some of the fantastic work that’s being done here and in the rest of the UK in driving forward innovation and animal production.

“The key theme of this conference has been around sustainable food production and the role livestock can play in that.

“We hope through this event we have shown that together we can do the work to help us achieve those goals.”

Liam Sinclair, President of host organisation the British Society of Animal Science, said the conference had been an excellent opportunity for scientists from around the world to come together and share ideas.

“It’s through collaboration that we are going to come up with the ideas we need to overcome the challenges we face.

“Events like EAAP2016 are vital to help us have those discussions and find ways to take them forward in future.”

For more pictures from the evening, plus photographs from the rest of the conference, visit the EAAP2016 Facebook page 

01 Sep 2016

Student team help steer EAAP 2016 to success

A team of PhD students from universities across the UK, Ireland and France have been praised for their part in helping to run the EAAP2016 conference in Belfast.

The group of 30 students were on-hand throughout the five-day event to help with everything from delegate registration, to providing information, offering technical support during sessions and making sure events run smoothly.

They were easily spotted around the Waterfront Conference Centre by their distinctive purple gilets.


During the conference gala dinner at Belfast’s Titanic Centre on Wednesday, BSAS president Liam Sinclair said the students had played a vital role in helping the conference run so smoothly.

“They have been here from 7am every morning to give their help wherever it was needed,” he said. “It’s fair to say the event wouldn’t have gone so well without them.”

Incoming EAAP president Matthias Gauly also took the opportunity to thank the group during his first address to delegates as president, praising them for their hard work.

01 Sep 2016

EAAP delegates welcomed to historic Belfast landmark

Hundreds of animal scientists across the globe have been treated to a VIP welcome at one of Belfast’s most historic landmarks.

Delegates at EAAP2016 joined the Lord Mayor of Belfast for a special drinks reception at Belfast’s City Hall on Tuesday (30 August).

The exclusive gathering gave delegates the chance to view the spectacular architecture of the building, which dates back to the late 19th century and was designed after Belfast was granted city status by Queen Victoria in 1888.

The visit was followed by a special pub quiz, which was held across several of Belfast’s most famous pubs.

To see pictures from the evening, plus photographs from the rest of the conference, visit the EAAP2016 Facebook photo gallery.

01 Sep 2016

Agricultural science key to the future of European farming

Developments in science, technology and innovation are key to the future of European farming, a major agricultural science conference has heard.

The European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP) conference in Belfast was told that science had a vital role in helping agriculture find ways to produce food more sustainably.

Addressing more than 1500 delegates during the conference’s opening ceremony on Tuesday (30 August), European Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan said the agricultural sector needed to become smarter, leaner and cleaner.

“That requires more and better knowledge that allows us to build a more competitive and sustainable food production system, and creates new value chains in rural areas,” he said.


Mr Hogan said that agricultural science had taken a backseat in Europe for a long time, but there was a recognition that research was vital to the industry and that trend had to be reversed.

“These days we expect farmers to do much more than produce food,” he told delegates. “We expect them to generate jobs and economic growth and contribute to environmental targets. Innovation within the sector is key to helping balance these different priorities.

“As a result of various crises in the EU we have fallen behind our targets and allowed agricultural research to become a lower priority than it should be,” he added. 

“But there is a resurgent ambition to change this. We doubled our investment in the field under Horizon 2020 [the EU programme for research and innovation] and we have made research and innovation a central plank of the rural development programme.”

Competitive edge

Northern Ireland Agriculture Minister Michelle McIlveen said farmers were increasingly looking to science to give them a competitive edge.

“Sustainable food production is vital - particularly here in Northern Ireland where food and farming is worth £5bn to our economy every year,” she told delegates.

"We have to produce food as sustainably as possible, and the adoption of new research and development is a key driver of this.”

Miss McIlveen said Brexit had thrown some uncertainty around science and agriculture, but she was confident the UK would continue to maintain its position of excellence in farming and science.

“We want UK scientists to continue to work with European partners,” she said. “Exiting the EU will being challenges, but there will be opportunities to work with partners in a new way. I have no doubt that we will continue to work closed with Europe.”

Long-term assurances

Liam Sinclair, President of EAAP 2016 host organisation the British Society of Animal Science, said governments across the UK needed to make assurances over long-term funding for agricultural research projects.

“We have some fantastic scientists working here in the UK, and we don’t want to see their work being put at risk because of funding issues,” he said.

“We are also concerned about barriers being created between countries,” Professor Sinclair added. “Animal science relies on links between other organisations, but there are concerns other countries are hesitant to collaborate.

“If the UK can’t collaborate them we will lose out on the quality of science, and that will have a huge impact on UK farmers.”

31 Aug 2016

Visitors treated to a Taste of Northern Ireland at special EAAP show

Animal scientists from across the world have been given a taste of Northern Ireland thanks to a special event to mark the opening day of EAAP 2016.

Hundreds of conference visitors descended on St. George's Market - the last surviving Victorian indoor market in Belfast - for a cracking first evening of fabulous local food courtesy of Taste of Ulster.

Screen Shot 2016-08-30 at 19.52.41.png

Specially-brewed conference beer 'Moovin' On Up’ - produced by locally-based Bull house Brewing Company - went down a treat, as did the luxurious Glastry Farm ice cream.

As well as sampling some excellent food and drink attendees were able to buy local confectionary and crafts at the indoor market stalls whilst tapping their feet to a local traditional Irish band.

Screen Shot 2016-08-30 at 19.52.08.png

Local farmers also showed off their beautiful prized beasts in the farm livestock display as guests mingled and networked throughout the evening.

To see more pictures from the evening, plus photographs from the opening day of the conference, visit our EAAP2016 Facebook album

30 Aug 2016

Europe's biggest animal science event kicks-off in Belfast

Animal scientists from more than fifty countries have arrived in Belfast for the opening day of Europe’s biggest animal science event.

Over 1500 delegates have gathered at the city’s Waterfront Conference Centre to hear about the latest developments in livestock science, and the ways science can help animal production.

The four-day event will feature more than 1000 presentations from scientists, industry leaders and global exports who are set to discuss issues ranging from genetics, nutrition, management, health and animal physiology.

Sectors being covered include dairy and beef cattle, sheep, pigs and aquaculture.

A special symposium featuring European Farm Commissioner Phil Hogan and Northern Ireland farming minister Michelle McIlveen will also focus on sustainable food production, and the role livestock can play in feeding the world.

Mike Steele, chief executive of conference organisers the British Society of Animal Science, says the event will be an once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase Northern Ireland and UK agriculture  and science to a global audience.

“As well as having some of the best farming systems in the world, the United Kingdom is home to some world-leading scientists whose work is helping shape the way food is produced,” he says.

“EAAP 2016 is an incredible opportunity to not only show what is being done here, but to also share ideas about how scientists and farmers across the world can work together to improve food production systems.

“As the world’s population grows, we need to find ways to produce sustainable supplies of healthy, safe and nutritious food, and livestock have an important role to play in that,” he adds.

“Being in Belfast this week gives us a unique chance to talk about the issues we face together, and plan the ways we are going to resolve them.”

For news from EAAP 2016 as it happens, follow the conference on Twitter.





29 Aug 2016

Raise a glass at EAAP2016

If you're coming to EAAP2016 in Belfast later this month, be sure to try a very special tipple which will be on offer during the event.

With the help of a local Northern Ireland brewing company, EAAP has commissioned its very own conference beer, a mild amber ale called Moovin On Up.

Produced by the Bullhouse Brewing Company near Belfast, the locally-crafted ale has its roots in beers which were popular in the UK and Ireland in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

It will be available at the Taste of Ulster and Livestock show at St Georges Market 

EAAP has commissioned its very own conference beer ......Moovin On Up - 3.8% abv. Mild (Amber Ale)

Local brewery at the Bullhouse Brewing Company Near Belfast this is a special locally crafted ale  for EAAP 2016. It is a beer that has its roots in ales popular in the UK and Ireland in the 19th and early 20th Century and thus resurrects the traditional Mild style of beer.  


It will be available at the St  Georges Market Taste of Ulster and LIvestock show on Monday evening 29 August 

19 Aug 2016

Local industry conference day rate now available


Local industries in Belfast and the rest of Northern Ireland are being offered the chance to attend EAAP 2016 at a special discounted rate.

To give more local industries the opportunity to get involved with the conference - the largest animal science event in Europe - EAAP 2016 is offering a special day delegate rate of just £180 for those interested in attending.

To sign up ad take advantage of this special offer, contact the EAAP 2016 organising team by emailing



11 Aug 2016

Coming to EAAP? Get all the details you need

Whether you're attending as a delegate or as a speaker, download our handy guide to all the information you'll need during EAAP2016.

With everything from travel and hotel details to tourist information, the guide includes details on getting around Belfast quickly and easily.

And if you're an author or presenter, don't forget to check out all the helpful links and advice you need to make sure your presentation goes without a hitch.

Download our EAAP2016 guide now

09 Aug 2016

First results of pig and poultry feed efficiency study to be presented at EAAP2016

A major European project focusing on understanding the biology of feed efficiency in pigs in chickens is set to reveal its latest findings at EAAP 2016.Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 14.34.30.png

European Union consortia Eco-FCE - an EU FP7-funded project focused - will share key results from its four-year study at a special one-day symposium at the conference.

The symposium, 'Understanding the biology of feed use efficiency in pigs and chickens', will be the first chance to hear outcomes from the research, which has been conducted by 18 academic and industry partners across Europe and includes the AgriFood and Biosciences Institute and Queen’s University, Belfast.

The agenda for the one-day symposium, to be held on Monday 29 August, includes four main sessions, each including presentations on both pigs and broiler chickens.  These sessions include:

  • Early-life manipulation to improve feed efficiency (including in ovo administration of synbiotics and nutritional conditioning in broilers, and nutritional supplementation and microbiota transplants in pigs)

  • Feeding to optimise feed use efficiency (in particular focusing on enzyme use when varying the basal composition of the diets)

  • Biological factors driving divergence in feed use efficiency (including gut structure, function and microbiota, transcriptomics, feeding behaviour)

  • Advancing feed use efficiency through genetics and genomics (including information on the genetic architecture of feed efficiency traits, integrative genomic models and use of RFI or FCR in genetic selection models.  This session will also include an industry perspective from Cobb-Vantress, and a presentation from Breed4Food.

Find out more and register 

02 Aug 2016

Dunbia to address supply chain integration at EAAP 2016

Finding ways to integrate supply chains to deliver consistently high-quality produce is just one of the many practical sessions delegates at this year’s EAAP conference are set to attend.

dunbia-200x200.jpgUK meat processor and conference sponsor Dunbia has put together a special industry workshop looking at the role of supply chain integration in meat quality as part of a number of special sessions examining how developments in livestock science can improve food production.

Dr Ryan Law, Dunbia’s Agricultural Research Manager, said: “We believe that the agri-food industry must strive towards supply chain integration in order to address one of its biggest challenges – lack of consistency in meat quality.

“We have developed an industry session which focuses on the link between Supply Chain Integration and the delivery of consistent, high quality product.”

Dunbia’s conference session will bring together four speakers who represent this supply chain and who are committed to supply chain integration.

Farmer Marc Jones, who runs a beef and sheep farm in Wales, will join Will Jackson from retailer The Co-op, as well as Professor Chris Calkins from the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, whose research focuses on meat quality and the effects of production systems on quality.

Dr Law will complete the panel, and will explain the development of Dunbia’s Integrated Beef Scheme.

"We hope that delegates attending this session will leave with a clearer vision of how supply chain integration can and does work,” Dr Law adds.

Screen Shot 2016-07-27 at 15.37.13.png 

Jim Dobson, Dunbia Chief Executive (pictured left, above, with EAAP 2016 organising committee members Mike Steele of BSAS and Sinclair Mayne of AFBI), says the processor is proud to offer its support to EAAP 2016.

“Our Agricultural Research Department is central to our vision of driving improvements and efficiencies across our industry through collaboration with industry bodies and academic institutions, with the ultimate aim of creating a sustainable and profitable industry for all," he says.

"We believe that the UK agricultural industry is among the best in the world and through EAAP 2016 we can showcase it to stakeholders and key influencers from across the globe.”

“The importance of EAAP 2016 to Northern Ireland and the wider UK agriculture industry cannot be over-stated,” Mr Dobson adds.

“It offers an excellent opportunity to showcase the very best of UK and Irish livestock farming to an international audience and to engage, network and learn from the best in the world. I would encourage anyone involved or interested in agri-food to attend the conference.”

27 Jul 2016

Devenish Nutrition gives its backing to EAAP2016

Final plans are in place for Europe's major animal science conference in Northern Ireland this summer.  Devenish_Logo-736x501.jpg

The 67th Annual Meeting of the European Federation of Animal Science - the first to be held in Northern Ireland - will run from 29th August to 2nd September at the Waterfront Conference Centre in Belfast. The conference is being hosted by the British Society of Animal Science.  

Dr John Gilliland, agricultural director of Devenish Nutrition - the conference's principle sponsor - said: “We are pleased to support this major international livestock science conference in Belfast.  

"Northern Ireland has a long tradition of producing high quality food and, as a local company with a global presence, we believe that application of new science in livestock production systems is critical if we are to feed the ever growing world population in a sustainable way.

“In Devenish we also believe that food and farming innovation can play a major role in improving human health as evidenced by our work in partnership with Moy Park and Waitrose, in which we have introduced the UK’s first chicken that is a source of omega 3”.

In addition to principal sponsorship of the Conference, Devenish are also hosting an industry technical session entitled 'Healthy Livestock Products for Healthy Humans' and a visit to their research and heritage farm facility near Dowth in Co Meath.

Book your ticket now

25 Jul 2016

Last chance to grab a hotel deal

If you haven’t booked your accommodation for this summer’s EAAP conference in Belfast, then don’t miss your last chance to grab a deal.

Delegates have until Friday 29 July to make use of our special accommodation service to help find a place to stay - whether you’re looking for a luxury hotel or a budget-friendly hostel.

In partnership with Visit Belfast, our accommodation facility will search out the latest deals, making sure you stay in Belfast for the best possible price.

And with hundreds of places to stay - including five-star hotels, apartments, and hostels - there’s something in Belfast for every budget.

If you miss the 29 July deadline then it’s still not too late to book a great place to stay during EAAP 2016 - you can either approach hotels directly or use a booking website.

Book your accommodation now 

Register for EAAP 


21 Jul 2016

Equine experts galloping towards Belfast

International experts in the world of equine science will be heading to Northern Ireland this summer for EAAP - Europe’s largest animal science conference.

Science in commercial practice will be a key aspect of the event, set to take place at Belfast's Waterfront Hall and Conference centre from 29 August to 2 September. Screen Shot 2016-07-18 at 13.21.47.png

As well as over 70 conference sessions, the conference will include opportunities to participate in technical tours to discuss how research and development is delivered and adopted at a commercial level.

One of the highlights of the conference will be the equine tour. This will include a visit to the College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE) Enniskillen Campus to view and discuss how education and training is delivered in the areas of equine health, reproduction and performance.

The tour will then move to Stragrane House in County Tyrone, the base of racehorse trainer Andy Oliver.  This multiple group winning trainer and qualified vet trains both Flat and National Hunt horses. Delegates will undertake a tour of the yard and facilities and hear about training methods and management practices used to develop race winning horses.

The final stop will be at Tullyraine House Stud and Equine Clinic in County Down. Delegates will tour the stud and meet St. Leger and Breeders Cup winning stallion Conduit.

The equine clinic is the main equine referral practice in Northern Ireland and managed by Hugh Suffern, vet for the Irish Team and multiple bloodstock sales.

Delegates will go on a tour of the clinic facilities and hear about the services offered and areas of most demand.  

With a blend of cutting-edge science, new innovations and demonstration of how science is translated and adopted into commercial practice EAAP2016 is a must-attend event for those involved in the science of agriculture, food and equine industries.


Register now

18 Jul 2016

Last chance to buy discounted tickets for EAAP 2016

If you're planning on coming to Europe's largest animal science conference in Belfast this summer, then don't miss your last chance to buy a ticket at a discounted rate.

Delegates who register for EAAP 2106 before Thursday 30 June will qualify for our special early-bird rate.

Hosted at the brand-new, Belfast Waterfront Centre from 29 August to 2 September, EAAP 2016 will provide a unique opportunity to showcase the best of UK animal science, research and livestock production to an international audience.

With over 1200 delegates - including scientists, policy makers, farmers and people working across the livestock sector - set to attend, EAAP 2016 promises to be a chance to network, share ideas, and learn about the latest developments in the livestock sector.

A packed social programme means delegates will also get to experience some unforgettable events - including a food and drink festival at Belfast's famous St Georges Market, and an incredible banquet at the city's world-famous Titanic Centre.

Register now

10 Jun 2016

EAAP delegates to be welcomed aboard AFBI’s scientific research ship

The Agri-Food and Bioscience Institute (AFBI) scientific research ship, the RV Corystes, is set to open its doors to welcome hundreds of delegates from this year’s EAAP conference in Belfast.

For three days the RV Corsystes will be moored a short distance from the Waterfront Conference Centreso that EAAP 2016 delegates can find out about the research carried out in Northern Ireland’s coastal waters and the Irish Sea, and about life as a marine scientist.


Amongst its many roles, AFBI’s research ship collects data on fish stocks, which is used to advise policy-makers and shape legislation around the country’s fishing industry.

The surveys make use of specialised fishing gear and acoustic sensing techniques to learn about the status of fish stocks, and formulate annual scientific advice to ensure the long-term sustainability and profitability of the Northern Ireland fishing sector.

Alongside its research role, RV Corsystes also provides an emergency response service to help  protect the marine environment and fishing sector.

Delegates at EAAP 2016 will be able to visit the ship on Sunday 28 August or during lunchtimes 29 and 30 August and see what the ship does.

Mike Steele, chief executive of conference organisers BSAS, said: “We are delighted that AFBI, as a key sponsor of EAAP2016, has agreed to bring this unique research facility into the conference.

“Fisheries and aquaculture are key industries in Northern Ireland and we are sure delegates from all of the different animal scientific disciplines will find their visit fascinating.

“Delegates will have a chance to taste high quality fish during the conference, so this will give then an insight into how AFBI is helping fight the scientific challenges facing producers and fishermen.”

07 Jun 2016

EAAP impresses the cream of Northern Ireland's farming sector at the Balmoral Show


The EAAP 2016 team visited the Balmoral Show 2016 earlier this month to talk to visitors, sponsors and industry leaders about this summer's EAAP conference in Belfast.

Pictured are just some of the people the conference's organising committee met, including Justin McCarthy, editor of the Irish Farmers Journal, Barclay Bell, president of the Ulster Farmers' Union, and MEPs Diane Dodds and Jim Nicholson.

If you're planning on attending this summer's EAAP conference in Belfast, then there's still time to buy your ticket at a discounted price. 

Register before Thursday 30 June and you'll qualify for our special early-bird rate. Register now


23 May 2016

Sponsors take first look at world-class EAAP2016 conference venue

Sponsors of EAAP 2016 have been treated to a look behind the scenes at the newly-finished venue for this summer’s event.

Guests from companies including Devenish Nutrition, Dunbia, AFBIS, Germinal and Alltech were given a tour around the state-of-the-art Waterfront Centre in Belfast, which has undergone a dramatic transformation ahead of the EAAP conference.

The aim of the tour was to let sponsors and conference organisers see how theatre presentations, commercial displays and scientific posters will be positioned to ensure scientists and those working in the livestock industry will be able to get the best from the event.

With Europe’s biggest annual scientific conference coming to Belfast in 29 August – 1 September, everyone agreed that the extended venue will offer a fantastic networking opportunity for delegates.


Mike Steele, chief executive of UK host organisation BSAS, said: “The conference only comes to the UK every 25 years, so it’s a great opportunity to profile Britain’s and Northern Ireland’s livestock agriculture, and perhaps even influence the 2030 research agenda.

“With 1200 experts and scientists from 66 countries giving over 1000 presentations across four days, we see this a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to kick-start a dialogue between farmers, consultants and researchers who can help solve scientific and technical problems,” he added.


Whilst the Waterfront Centre will be the hub of the EAAP 2016 conference, delegates will be able to see and sample Belfast City and Northern Ireland through a comprehensive social and visit programme.

This will include a St George’s Victorian Market Food and Livestock show, a series of farm visits, a City Hall reception, and a spectacular banquet in the Titanic Centre.

Find out more and register


20 Apr 2016

A social programme to remember at EAAP2016

Coming to EAAP2016 in Belfast this year isn’t just about giving you the chance to hear the latest in animal science. 

We want to make sure you have an experience to remember, which is why we’ve organised a fantastic social programme - many of which are free for delegates - to will ensure EAAP2016 will be a conference you’ll never forget.

Here’s our run-down of the week’s top events:

Monday: Delegates will get a warm Ulster welcome at the first evening of the conference thanks to ‘A Taste of Ulster’ - a fantastic food, drink, music and livestock show in St Georges Victorian covered market. 

The market is just across the road from the Waterfront venue, where delegates will have a whole evening to network and see the best of Northern Ireland livestock.

They will also be able to try a variety of top-quality food and drink and view and browse a range great market stalls with local produce and gifts. 

Tuesday: As well as a traditional Belfast City drinks reception in the City Hall, for the more adventurous we’ll be hosting is a treasure hunt around Belfast City pubs as part of our ‘Prof in a Pub’ event.

The hunt will give delegates the chance to explore the city, and visit traditional and friendly pubs where EAAP ‘Professors’ will be able to give then answers to questions that will help towards winning prizes.  

Wednesday: The top event in our social programme, the Titanic Experience will be where delegates can enjoy a fantastic tour of the world-famous Titanic Centre in Belfast Docks - the place the Titanic was built and launched. There will then be a great banquet with drink, music and networking.  

Thursday: A free evening visit and reception hosted by our principal sponsors Devenish Nutrition will see delegates taken to the magnificent Bru na Boinne UNESCO World Heritage Site in the beautiful Boyne Valley, north of Dublin.

Mike Steele of the EAAP2016 Organising Team said: “The EAAP2016 social programme will be one to enjoy and remember.

“We are keen to let every delegate enjoy a total Belfast experience by getting a real taste of the warmth of Ulster and its people.

"We’re sure they’ll have such a great time that they’ll be keen to come back again and again.”

Find out more and register now

24 Mar 2016

Overwhelming response to EAAP 2016 abstract call

EAAP 2016 has received an overwhelming response to its call for abstracts, with nearly 1200 submissions being made by people hoping to present at Belfast this summer.

Beating last year’s submission figures, abstracts were sent from 66 countries across the globe, ensuring EAAP 2016 will have a truly international flavour.

The presentations will now be organised into a four-day schedule for the event, which will take place at the Waterfront Conference Centre (pictured) in Belfast from 29 August to 1 September.

Sessions will cover a huge array of topics ranging from genetics and livestock nutrition to pig, sheep and poultry production and aquaculture, as well as one-day symposiums including Amazing Grazing and Precision Livestock Agriculture.


As well as the scientific-orientated sessions there will also be half-day events that will cover the tricky problems of succession in farming, food fraud and how to feed animals to achieve healthy human diets.

The plenary session on Tuesday 30 August will cover land use and food security, with world experts Tim Searchinger (WRI, USA), Philip Thornton (ILRI, Kenya), J F Sousanna (INRA, France), Pat Dillon (Teagasc, Ireland) and Ian Givens (Reading University, UK) addressing how those issues can be balanced.

Sinclair Mayne, head of the EAAP organising team, said he was delighted by the number of abstracts submitted for the 67th annual EAAP meeting in Belfast.

“The conference represents an excellent opportunity to showcase the very best of UK and Irish livestock farming to an international audience,” Dr Mayne said.

“It’s also a chance to bring scientists and those working in livestock agriculture together to discuss how research can help address the challenges that face the European livestock industry.  

“It’s great timing for the biggest animal science conference in Europe to come to Belfast and we hope everyone will use this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to attend, listen, learn and network.”  

Whilst the deadline for papers is now passed there is plenty of room at the newly-extended Waterfront venue, in the centre of Belfast, for delegates and exhibitors to come and join in. 

Register for EAAP 2016 


12 Mar 2016

One last chance to present at EAAP 2016

The deadline for submissions to present at the 2016 EAAP Conference in Belfast has been extended to Monday 7 March.

Would-be presenters now have one more week to apply to present at this year's event, held in Belfast, Northern Ireland, from 29 August to 2 September.

EAAP general secretary Andrea Rosati said: “We received many requests to extended the deadline by a few days, which is why we have decided to delay the submission till Monday 7 March. 

“No abstracts will be accepted after then, so this really is the last chance for people to make their submissions to present at Europe’s largest animal science conference.”

Submissions can be made by anyone who studies or working in animal science, or any industry connected to the livestock sector.

This includes animal scientists, farmers, social scientists, consultants, lecturers, government and agency experts, extension officers, students and Nuffield scholars. 

Topics should ideally fit into the list of technical topics, which includes cattle, sheep, goat and pig production, the equine sector as well as fish, food and industry-relevant science. The full list can be found on the EAAP abstracts page.

Find out more and make your submission 

29 Feb 2016

Take in the sights of Northern Ireland at EAAP 2106

From stunning landscapes and inspirational locations, to the finest food and drink, works of art and fascinating history, a visit to Northern Ireland for EAAP 2016 promises to be an incredible experience.

If you’re planning on coming to the conference in Belfast, our fantastic social programme will give you an unforgettable taste of what the beautiful city has to offer.

But if you have the time to stray further afield, there’s even more to see in Northern Ireland, and some interesting ways to see it:

Sightseeing tours

Learn about the cities and beautiful landscapes of Northern Ireland on one of many sightseeing tours by bus, taxi, boat or on foot.

Screen Shot 2016-02-13 at 11.14.02.pngOpen-top bus and taxi tours are popular in Belfast and Londonderry, while there are lots of options for day trips to famous attractions such as the Giant's Causeway and Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge. 

Due to its compact size, most parts of Northern Ireland can be reached within a couple of hours from the main towns and cities, allowing you to see as much as possible during your visit.

Our favourite: The Game of Thrones Boat Tour

One for fans of the books and the TV show, this tour is just 40 minutes from Belfast. Enjoy stunning views from the water of the various ancient Westeros Castles and other shoreline locations used by HBO.

More tours of Northern Ireland

Historical Tours

Northern Ireland has a fascinating history spanning from Celtic and early Christian times through Industrial Belfast and RMS Titanic to the region's more recent history.  

Screen Shot 2016-02-13 at 11.17.59.pngTake a historical walking, bus or taxi tour and you can follow in the footsteps of Ireland's patron saint, Patrick, or explore the sites associated with Titanic and Belfast's proud maritime heritage.

Our favourite: Belfast City Bike Tours and Bike Hire

For the energetic amongst you, Belfast City Bike Tours offers a selection of guided tours which explore some of Belfast’s most famous and beautiful sights, and take you to see some of the lesser-known gems of the city.

More historical tours

Arts, Culture and Gastronomic Tours

Northern Ireland has a thriving arts scene and a rich cultural heritage. Whether you’re interested in music, art, literature or religion, Northern Ireland has something for everyone.

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These tours range from organised bus and walking tours exploring a particular aspect of the local arts scene, to organisations offering personalised itineraries geared towards your particular areas of interest. 

Our favourite: Plantsman's Garden Tours

Plantsman's Garden Tours offer incredible access to the gardens of historic stately homes and the privately owned masterpieces of Co. Down and Northern Ireland.

More on arts, culture and gastronomic tours



13 Feb 2016

Winner of free EAAP 2016 registration announced

An animal scientist from Scotland will be attending EAAP 2016 in Belfast for free after winning EAAP’s early bird competition.

Davina Hill from Scotland’s Rural College in Edinburgh was randomly selected as the winner from the list of people who registered to attend this year’s conference before before 31 December 2015.

A Quantitative Animal Scientist, Dr Hill has a number of research interests including how animals cope with environmental change and how this influences productivity.

She is currently investigating how environmental factors, such as temperature, drive behavioural decisions in animals from different genetic lines.

Her research is based on the wider issue of helping agriculture adapt to climate change by improving our understanding of animals’ responses to weather. 

Dr Hill's future work aims to identify management practices that help dairy cows maintain productivity under adverse conditions, and to assess whether breeding livestock for resilience to climate change is a feasible goal.

Climate Change is an important part of EAAP 2016 where the theme is Sustainable Food Production: Livestock’s Key Role.  

Relevant invited sessions at Belfast will include Livestock and climate change: current knowledge and policy challenge, New challenges in Environmental Assessment and Is animal nutrition contributing to reduced environmental impact.

Dr Hill said: “I am looking forward to being in Belfast as it’s a brilliant opportunity to catch the latest science and to network with other scientists working in my area.

“The brand new Waterfront venue sounds fantastic and winning this free registration is very much a bonus”.  

Davina is submitting a summary to give a presentation on the effects of weather on milk yield and quality in dairy cows.

Submissions for EAAP 2016 are welcome now. To be considered, you must submit an abstract by 1 March. Submit an abstract

09 Feb 2016

Apply now for you chance to win an EAAP scholarship

Members of EAAP are being offered the chance to win funding to present at this year’s conference in Northern Ireland thanks to the EAAP Scholarship fund.

Members who are from EAAP member countries and aged 38 or below can apply for funding to use towards paying for travel, accommodation and delegate fees at this year’s conference, being held in Belfast from 29 August to 2 September.

Applications must include a short CV, as well as the paper the applicant plans to present and a copy of their original abstract.

To be in with a chance, applications must be sent to EAAP by 1 March 2016.

If you are not yet a member of of EAAP, you can register on the EAAP website.

For more details and information of how to apply, visit our Scholarships page.

02 Feb 2016

Don’t miss your chance to present at EAAP 2016

Submissions are now open to present at Europe’s largest animal science event.

Would-be presenters have until 1 March to make their submission to present at the 67th meeting of EAAP, held this year in Belfast from 29 August to 2 September.

The event, which brings together more than 1200 scientists from across the world, is set to feature some 1000 presentations from scientists, industry leaders and experts in sustainability as they discuss the future of global livestock production.

Focusing on the developments in sustainable livestock systems, the conference will cover a host of subjects around animal science, including genetics, nutrition, management, health and animal physiology.

EAAP 2016 organisers are now calling for submissions from anyone connected to the livestock sector, regardless of what capacity they work in and their level of experience.

This includes animal scientists, farmers, social scientists, consultants, lecturers, government and agency experts, extension officers, students and Nuffield scholars.

Topics should ideally fit into the list of technical topics, which includes cattle, sheep, goat and pig production, the equine sector as well as fish, food and industry-relevant science. The full list can be found on the EAAP website.

An unforgettable event

Mike Steele from the EAAP2016 organising team said: “We welcome anyone, from students to experienced scientists and practitioners, to submit an abstract and join us for what will be a great conference and networking event between the research community and the animal industry.

“With leading edge presenters and delegates from over 70 countries, Belfast 2016 will be Europe's largest animal science conference this year.”

Based in the brand new Waterfront Conference at the centre of Belfast, speakers and delegates will be able to take part in an extensive social programme which will make sure EAAP 2016 will be an unforgettable event, Mr Steele added

“We’re hugely excited to welcome speakers and delegates to Northern Ireland, and would encourage people to make their submissions now so they don’t miss out on this fantastic conference.”

Find out more and make your submission

01 Feb 2016

Northern Ireland’s livestock sector to be showcased at EAAP 2016

Developments in Northern Ireland’s livestock sector will come under the spotlight this summer as world leaders in animal science and livestock production come to Belfast for Europe’s largest animal science conference.

cowssmall.jpgMore than a thousand experts from around the globe will travel to Belfast to discuss the latest in livestock science and animal production at the annual European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP) Conference.

Focusing on the developments in sustainable livestock production, the conference will cover a host of subjects around animal science, including genetics, nutrition, management, health and animal physiology.

Technical sessions will cover cattle, sheep, goat and pig production, the equine sector as well as fish, food and industry-relevant science.

Northern Ireland’s livestock sector will also be showcased as delegates will hear about current industry challenges, particularly the drive for increased efficiency given current low levels of profitability, the development of added value products and the key role of  grassland in cattle, sheep and milk production.

AFBI Director of Sustainable Agri-Food Sciences Sinclair Mayne, who is chairman of the EAAP Local Organising Committee, said the event will be a unique opportunity to showcase Northern Ireland’s livestock and scientific sectors to a global audience.

“Northern Ireland has long been recognised for its pioneering work in livestock science and production, and this conference provides an excellent opportunity  to bring all these developments to the fore,” he said.

“We’re hugely excited to be able to welcome scientists, policy makers, industry experts and producers from across the world to Belfast for what will be an unforgettable event.”

The conference will also provide a major international platform for UK companies and organisations who are sponsoring the event, including Devenish Nutrition, Alltech, Dunbia, AFBI and Moy Park.

Other supporters include BBSRC, Evonik, Teagasc, Agrisearch, Germinal, Global Farm Platform, Thompsons, Karro and the Irish Farmers Journal.

Registration for the five-day event, which will be held in Belfast’s Waterfront Centre from 29 August to 2 September is now open, with discounted fees for those who book before 30 June 2016.

In addition to a full conference timetable, attendees can register for a place at the conference dinner, a unique Taste of Ulster Banquet which will include fine local foods and culture, hosted at the world famous Titanic Experience Centre.

Accompanying guests can also participate in a special programme which will take them to some of Northern Ireland’s most spectacular locations, including Stormont, Belfast’s Parliament buildings the Giant’s Causeway and the world’s oldest whiskey distillery, Bushmills.

20 Jan 2016

Innovation at the heart of EAAP 2016


Northern Ireland has long been recognised for its pioneering work in livestock science and production, but it’s history of industry and innovation doesn’t just lie in the livestock sector.

As we gear up to showcase the latest developments in livestock production at EAAP 2016, we've taken a look at some of the other discoveries Northern Ireland’s visionaries have made over the years:


1687: Hans Sloane's Milk Chocolate

Hans_Sloane.jpgBorn in Killyleagh Co. Down, Hans Sloane (pictured, right) was a Royal physician and eminent collector who bequeathed over 71,000 objects to the British Museum.

In the 1680s, he spent 15 months in Jamaica as the governor’s physician and catalogued hundreds of botanical species, including the cocoa bean.

While locals mixed it with water, Sloane decided to boil it with milk and sugar, thereby inventing milk chocolate. Back in England, he used his milk chocolate recipe to treat digestion and tuberculosis.

1824: William Thomson and the Kelvin unit

William Thomson, Baron Kelvin, was a Belfast-born mathematician and physicist whose name was given to the Kelvin unit of absolute temperature.

Thomson excelled at Glasgow and Cambridge Universities and, aged just 22, became Cambridge’s chair of natural philosophy (later physics).

As well as his groundbreaking work in thermodynamics, Thomson invented the compass used by the British Navy and was instrumental in laying the first transatlantic cable.


sherlock_holmes.jpg1866: John Getty McGee's Ulster overcoat - Sherlock's garment of choice

Named after the Irish province that includes Northern Ireland, the 'Ulster' overcoat is synonymous with famed detective, Sherlock Holmes.

The coat's designer was John Getty McGee who owned McGee & Co. tailors on Belfast's High Street. The premises were later expanded and named the Ulster Overcoat Company in honour of his famous creation.

1890: Dunluce Castle & Giant's Causeway Tram 

Co. Antrim brothers William and Anthony Traill invented the world's first electric tramway with the construction of the Giant's Causeway Tramway.

causeway.jpgThe three-foot narrow gauge line harnessed hydro-electric power and the first section, linking Bushmills with Portrush, opened on 29 January 1883.

Four years later, a second section connected Bushmills with the Giant's Causeway. The line closed in 1949 due to reduced passenger numbers and high maintenance costs.

Then, in 2002, the Giant's Causeway and Bushmills Railway revived two miles of the original line, taking visitors to this iconic attraction (pictured, below) ever since.

1887: John Dunlop's pneumatic tyres

Scots-born but Belfast-based, John Dunlop (pictured, right) developed air-filled tubes in a bid to make bike riding - which was previously done on wooden wheels - more comfortable.

Ireland’s cycle racing elite dominated with Dunlop tyres before automobiles drove them to global dominance.

1890: William McCrum and the penalty kick

The son of a wealthy Irish linen manufacturer, ‘Master Willie’ McCrum was more interested in sport than business, becoming goalkeeper for Milford FC.

Annoyed by goalmouth foul play, McCrum devised the penalty kick to thwart unsportsmanlike behaviour.

The idea, known as the ‘Irishman's Motion’ and the ‘Death Penalty,’ was proposed in 1890 at an International Football Association Board and approved the following year.

1928: Harry Ferguson and the modern tractor

Credited with inventing the modern tractor, Ferguson’s three-point linkage system sent the Co. Down engineer into the agricultural history books.

mf8700_gallery-6.jpgPreviously, tractors and ploughs were two separate entities, making them cumbersome and dangerous to operate. Harry Ferguson hitched the two together and used hydraulics to move the plough section, making farming safer and more cost-effective.

Aged 25, aviation enthusiast Ferguson also became the first Irishman to fly a plane, and the first UK citizen to both build and fly a plane. He died in 1960, but his legacy lives on with the Massey Ferguson agricultural manufacturing company.

1965: Frank Pantridge and the portable defibrillator

Physician and cardiologist Professor Frank Pantridge was born in Co. Down and educated at Queen's University Belfast.

During WW2 he was a Japanese POW in Singapore. After the war, he studied cardiology in the US then returned to Belfast and became cardiac consultant at the Royal Victoria Hospital.

Realising the need to urgently treat cardiac patients, Pantridge invented the portable defibrillator. These devices were used in ambulances and at the scene of cardiac arrest. His 'Pantridge Plan' has saved countless lives worldwide. Dubbed the 'Father of Emergency Medicine', Frank Pantridge died in 2004 aged 88.

2012: Dr Steve Myers, CERN and the Large Hadron Collider


Belfast born and Queen’s University Belfast graduate Dr Steve Myers is one of the scientists behind the recent discovery of Higgs Boson, the so-called 'God Particle'. 

Myers is director of accelerators and technology at CERN, the European Organisation for Nuclear Research. Based near Geneva, facility collides particles in the 27km circumference tunnel (pictured, right) at close to the speed of light to try to emulate the ‘Big Bang’.

The data being recorded and analysed is being used by scientists, led by Myers, to try to discover the origins of the universe. 

List put together with help from the BBC 

15 Jan 2016

Book now for you chance to attend EAAP 2016 for free

If you’re planning to attend EAAP 2016 in Belfast, don’t miss out on your chance to win your conference place and accommodation.

Thanks to two separate competitions, delegates who register before Thursday 31 December will be automatically entered into a prize draw to have their conference fees covered.

Plus, if you book your conference accommodation at the same time, you’ll be entered into a second draw to win a two night stay at the Radisson Blu in Belfast, courtesy of our friends at Visit Belfast.

The hotel prize consists of either either a single or double occupancy room, which includes breakfast, free car parking and wifi.

The winner will be able to dine out in style thanks to a £40 restaurant voucher which can be spent in a range of restaurants and cafes across the city, offering everything from modern cuisine to traditional food and international delights from Italy and India.

The prize will also include two tickets to the Titanic Belfast attraction, which will include the Titanic Belfast Experience, so the lucky winner will also be able to experience some of the best sights Belfast has to offer.

To be in with a chance to win the two night stay, simply book your accommodation for EAAP 2016 using our special booking facility before 31 December.

For your chance to win a free conference place, register for your ticket on our website.  

A winner for both draws will be randomly selected and informed by email by Visit Belfast and the EAAP organising committee.

17 Dec 2015

Registration now open for EAAP 2016

Registration is now open for the 67th annual meeting of EAAP, Europe’s largest animal science conference. 

The event, held in Belfast from 29 August to 2 September 2016, will bring over a thousand scientists, researchers and industry experts from across the world together to discuss the latest developments in animal science.

titaniccentre.jpgFocused around the theme sustainable livestock production, the conference will cover a host of  animal science subjects, including animal genetics, nutrition, management and health and animal physiology.

Technical sessions will cover cattle, sheep and goat, pig and horse production, as well as fish, food and science relevant to industry.

There will also be several sessions focusing on the specifics of Northern Irish livestock production, with special emphasis on the country’s role at the forefront of research into using grassland for production.

EAAP local organising committee chairman Sinclair Mayne says the event offers a unique opportunity for industry and scientists to meet, exchange ideas and find ways to work together to implement new science for maximum impact.

“Here in Northern Ireland we are really excited about hosting the meeting and showcasing some of the fantastic work being done in livestock science and production in the UK and Northern Ireland in particular,” he says.

“We have secured considerable backing from the livestock industry and industry organisations, which is going to help us ensure this is going to be an unforgettable event.”

Delegates can register for the event now, with discounted fees available for those who book before 30 June 2016. EAAP members also qualify for a reduced fee.

In addition to a full conference timetable, attendees can register for a place at the conference dinner, a unique Taste of Ulster Banquet which will include fine local foods and culture, hosted at the world famous Titanic Experience Centre.

Accompanying guests can also apply for a special programme which will take them to some of Northern Ireland’s most spectacular locations, including Stormont, Belfast’s Parliament buildings, Giant’s Causeway, and the world’s oldest whiskey distillery, Bushmills.

For more information and to register, visit our registration page

06 Nov 2015

Book your EAAP accommodation now to win a free Belfast stay

Book your accommodation for EAAP 2016 by Friday 27th November and you could win a two night stay at the contemporary hotel, The Radisson Blu in Belfast, courtesy of our friends at Visit Belfast.visit belfast.jpg

Situated by the river in the innovative Gasworks district, the hotel is just minutes from Belfast city centre and top attractions including the Titanic Quarter, City Hall, and EAAP 2016’s venue, the Waterfront Hall.

The prize consists of either either a single or double occupancy room, which includes breakfast, free car parking and wifi.

The winner will be able to dine out in style thanks to a £40 restaurant voucher which can be spent in a range of restaurants and cafes across the city, offering everything from modern cuisine to traditional food and international delights from Italy and India.

The prize will also include two tickets to the Titanic Belfast attraction, which will include the Titanic Belfast Experience, so the lucky winner will also be able to experience some of the best sights Belfast has to offer.

To be in with a chance to win, simply book your accommodation for EAAP 2016 using our special booking facility before 27th November.

A winner will be randomly selected and informed by email by Visit Belfast.

Visit Belfast will manage the competition and liaise directly with the winner. Terms and conditions apply.

Book now 

Find out more about:

14 Aug 2015

Apply now for EAAP Study Commissions

Animal scientists are being offered the chance to create their own European animal science network and work with the best researchers in the continent by taking part in the EAAP’s Study Commissions.

Interested scientists are invited to apply for a position on the Commissions by filling in an application form by 15 August 2015. 

Successful candidates will be selected by EAAP general council on 2 September.

Open positions for 2015 include:

  • Cattle: two Vice-Presidents and one Industry Representative (one of the vice-presidents could be an industry representative)

  • Nutrition: one Secretary

  • Genetics: one President and two Vice-Presidents (one of which also industry representative)

  • Health and welfare: two Vice-Presidents, one Secretary (one of the three positions has to be an industry representative)

  • Livestock farming systems: one Industry Representative

  • Horse: one Secretary, one Industry Representative

  • Sheep and goat: one Secretary, one Industry Representative

  • Physiology: one Secretary

For more information or to send an application form and CV, email

More information on the EAAP website

09 Aug 2015

Planning for Belfast 2016 now in top-gear

The BSAS organising committee for the European Federation of Animal Science (EAAP) Meeting in Belfast has moved into top-gear, with the Conference just over a year away. BSAS last hosted the EAAP meeting in Edinburgh in 1994, and the Republic of Ireland hosted the meeting in Dublin in 2007.

Key priorities for the organising committee are identifying potential themes for scientific sessions. BSAS members have proposed a wide range of topics for discussion and the committee have now prioritised these and will be submitting a report for consideration by the various EAAP commissions.

The committee are also finalising plans for the social programme for the conference and a warm Belfast welcome will be guaranteed to all delegates.

Get the date in your diary: EAAP 2016 will be from 29 August – 1 September in Belfast

31 Jul 2015