The history of developments in pig husbandry in the Netherlands shows that the cooperation between research institutes, the pig husbandry sector, the government and business has always been good. Due to this unique cooperation, the Dutch pig husbandry sector continues to a front runner. VIC Sterksel is the place where much of the cooperation occurs and flourishes.
The partnership was launched on Friday 31 March 2012. More than 40 companies signed a declaration of intent for the “Partnership of innovators in pig husbandry and the pork production chain”. All participants are now working in, or intend to work in, private-public partnerships, and are consequently participating in one or more innovation programmes at VIC Sterksel.
The declaration of intent states the ambition to expand this broad partnership even further, and thus perpetuate the leading position of Dutch pig husbandry in Europe and beyond.
The declaration of intent was signed in the presence of Annechien ten Have (LTO Nederland – sector organisation for agriculture in the Netherlands) and Jaco Geurts (NVV – Dutch pig farmers' union). Both representatives of the pig farmers affirm the importance of continuing this form of partnership between businesses, research institutes and government institutions with the aim of attaining sustainable pig husbandry and a sustainable pork production chain. In the future, the private-public partnership will be expanded with even more involvement of pig farmers, civic organisations and education.
The partnership is dynamic with obviously much room for new initiatives and businesses.
In recent years, businesses, regional agricultural education centres (AOC's Zuid-Nederland), institutes of higher education and Wageningen University have been cooperating in innovating the education at VIC Sterksel. Moreover, the knowledge transfer to the extensive group of pig farmers is also is a priority and has been given a great deal of attention, in, for example, its cooperation with VarkensNET (pig husbandry network).