Expertise and results

VIC Sterksel, part of Wageningen Livestock Research, is an international research centre for sustainable pig husbandry and energy.

VIC Sterksel researchers the latest developments in animal nutrition, health, housing, welfare, climate control and feeding systems, manure processing, sustainable energy applications and barn construction.


Our research encompasses all aspects of sustainable pig husbandry. Various types of research can be conducted here: from research under controlled conditions on our experimental farm to a survey of commercial farms or a survey of your target audience. Extensive expertise is available on all our themes.

VIC Sterksel is a modern pig farm with 300 sows and 2,400 porkers and a great variety of livestock systems. As a result, it is possible to conduct research under controlled conditions. In addition, we offer great flexibility in accommodation and management to suit every research need.

Would you like to know more?

Would you like to discuss the research possibilities with us? Please do not hesitate to contact us.

Good Farming Star pork

Good Farming Star is a quality certification for pre-packaged pork products in Dutch supermarkets. In 2011, it was introduced by the supermarket chain Albert Heijn. This concept is characterised by the special attention for animal welfare (one star according to the Beter Leven hallmark): the pigs have more room, playing equipment has been installed in the pens and male piglets are not castrated. These were wishes from the general public and they have added value to Dutch-raised pork.

On behalf of the Vion Food Group and other clients, VIC Sterksel conducts research into housing for boars. VIC Sterksel is also developing and testing new environmental enrichment material that is suitable for both pigs and pig farmers.

Guesthouse for pigs

The guesthouse for pigs is a piggery that considers the needs of pigs and the wishes of the general public. The barn fits seamlessly into the landscape, the pigs are visible to the general public and the working conditions for the farmer are pleasant. Notable aspects of the design include the movable farrowing boxes, the pig toilet, the smart climate control and the fact that no harmful gases are emitted. All piglets are born and raised on the farm.

On behalf of a consortium of private parties, VIC Sterksel conducts research into aspects of barn design, such as the pig toilet.

Starplus concept for pigs

In the Star-plus concept for pigs the pens consist of a space for rooting with rooting material, natural light in the barn and the area has a fresher (outdoor) climatic atmosphere.

This design also promotes natural defecation in the defecation space above the dung conveyors. The dung and urine that are removed from the barn are used in a methane digester to generate sustainable energy. The heat from the methane digester is used to keep the piglets warm and to process the urine into fertilizer. Maize is first used as rooting material/feed, after which the remains are added to the methane digester and converted into sustainable energy.

On behalf of a consortium of private parties, VIC Sterksel is currently validating the prototype of this unique barn design for existing and new value chains.

- Unfortunately, your cookie settings do not allow videos to be displayed. - check your settings