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Livestock farming Special
February 2019
Dear ,
In the past few years we have expanded our team with three specialists in livestock farming. In this Livestock farming Special, we would like to introduce you to Dutch livestock farming as well as to our livestock farming specialists.
As a trusted partner for your company or organization, we can work together on developing sustainable food production in the world!
Thus, if you want to know more about our HollandDoor livestock farming services, please contact one of our livestock experts directly. 
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In this livestock farming special
Worldwide interest in Dutch dairy farming
The Netherlands has always been known as a dairy country and we have a long tradition in the production and consumption of milk, butter and cheese. This is part of the traditional image of clogs, windmills, tulips and cows in the grass that many international visitors have of our country. But be prepared for a surprise! Dutch dairy farming today is a modern, efficient agricultural sector with a strong focus on people, animals and the climate. It is also an important pillar of the Dutch economy with an export revenue of 7.9 billion euros. Around 17,000 dairy farms are currently active, ranging from small to large. Small farms nowadays often engage in extra activities (multifunctional agriculture), like caring for people, operating a farm shop or cheese making. The larger dairy farms produce for a substantial part for the world market.

The discontinuance of EU milk quotas in 2015 and the good prospects in the global dairy market stimulated new investments in Dutch dairy farming and the dairy industry in recent years. The production capacity has grown through modernization, expansion and new construction. However, at the same time, developments are restricted by governmental rules regarding the manure production. This leads to new innovations and operational changes which result in still more efficiency in the Dutch dairy production chain.
When you visit the Dutch dairy farms, you will find that there is a lot to see and learn about cow health, feeding, grazing, soil management, energy saving and manure processing. There are also many innovations in the fields of housing construction, mechanization, milking and processing of milk and data intelligence. All in all, there are plenty of reasons to visit dairy farming operations in the Netherlands. We will be happy to discuss with you the program and content of a study trip or training that fits your company or organization!
World-leading Dutch poultry sector
The Dutch poultry sector is a world leader. With entrepreneurship, quality and logistics, Dutch entrepreneurs have been able to build a strong position in eggs and poultry meat. The Netherlands is the world's largest exporter of eggs for consumption and egg products, and the third largest exporter of chicken meat. And that is accomplished with only 2,000 Dutch poultry farms: a small number of them involved in breeding parent stock - the 'genetic raw material' - which ends up going to 900 farms with laying hens (which produce eggs for consumption), 650 broiler chicken farms and nearly 200 companies that produce hatching eggs for broiler chickens or laying hens.
With such a strong sector, there is always a lot for foreign visitors to see and learn. All through the poultry chain there are new developments every year, for example in meat processing, housing systems, climate control, ventilation systems, breeding/genetics, machinery for egg grading, packing & processing, health and medicines, and feed production.
The following are a few of the recent developments:
  • hatching of eggs in the stable instead of in the hatchery;
  • selection of male chickens in eggs to prevent killing of day-old male chickens;
  • using new technologies like video surveillance to monitor chicken behaviour and automatically fine tune climate control, feeding automation, biometrics and data management.
Traditionally, Dutch research institutes have also provided much knowledge about the importance of clean water, high-quality feed and sufficient light for the production of healthy, high-quality poultry products in an efficient manner.
HollandDoor has an extensive contact network in the Dutch poultry sector and is able to organize study tours and training programs for foreign clients. We also provide our independent services to find the right Dutch business partner for you, be it to develop the poultry chain in your country or to buy machines and equipment.
141121 14.58.55
Pig farming is big farming in the Netherlands
In the Netherlands the pig business is big business, because of our professional farmers, feed milling and the meat processing industry. In our small country there are more than 14 million pigs, 7,000 professional pig farms, 130 feed milling plants and 10 slaughterhouses and meat processors. The pig farms are mostly concentrated in the east and south of the Netherlands. All are modern farms with 150 to 1,500 sows per farm or 1,000 to 10,000 fattening pigs per farm. The level of automatization is high and climate control is very sophisticated. Health control and prevention of diseases are very important issues among Dutch pig farmers. The national health service is therefore well organized with extra health checks and laboratory research. Feeding is mostly with complete feed, so the feed milling industry is strong and very innovative with regard to mixed feed and feed additives.

The main topics in our pig business are:
  • feeding, use of feedstuffs and feed milling;
  • breeding, genetics and use of pig data;
  • housing, climate control and animal welfare;
  • manure/compost handling, processing and fertilizing;
  • environmental problems/rules and climate change ;
  • efficiency in slaughtering, meat quality and hygiene;
  • meat processing, new meat products/concepts for retail and out of home.
Our HollandDoor experts can deal with all of these topics and will find fitting solutions for you. We will gladly run projects, organize trainings & study trips, and assist in business matchmaking!
Get to know the livestock farming specialists of HollandDoor!
Lisanne Oskam
I joined the HollandDoor team in 2017. Together with my husband, we run a 45 ha dairy farm with 90 dairy cows and 2 milking robots. I have a bachelor’s degree in human nutrition and management. I started my career in sales and marketing in the food industry. I have worked here with pleasure for 10 years, but driven by my ambitions and entrepreneurial nature, I decided to get started in our dairy farming business. I set up a separate company to receive national and international groups on our dairy farm and to explain the work as a modern entrepreneur in our dairy farm. Additionally I am active in various agricultural-oriented interest groups.
My fields of expertise are mainly in dairy farming, calf rearing and poultry farming. From practice I am familiar with many subjects such as animal feed, feed extraction, cattle improvement, milking, and housing. But I am also comfortable with topics such as new forms of energy and society's connection with the agricultural sector.

Ad Merks

I joined the HollandDoor team in 2016. As a farmers' son, I grew up among the pigs, cows and horses in the province of Noord-Brabant (NL). My key competence is translating farmers’ needs into opportunities and solutions. Moreover, creating linkages between civil communities and the ‘countryside’ is also still one of my activities.
In the last few years, I have implemented several projects in the field of manure, biomass valorisation and the marketing of feedstuffs in Eastern Europe, including the Baltic States, Ukraine, Georgia and the Balkans. I’m also familiar with Asian countries, such as Vietnam, Indonesia and Thailand as well as Australia. Finally, I have gained a lot of experience in developing a marketing department as the business unit manager of a leading research institute.
Within HollandDoor I have been working on projects in the area of feed, food and farming, using my large agricultural network at home and abroad. I am happy to answer your questions as an expert on pig farming, dairy & beef farming, feed milling and manure handling. Questions about forming integrations or value chains for dairy processing or meat processing are also very welcome.

Ruud Pothoven

I joined the HollandDoor team in 2014. With a master’s degree in Soil Science and Plant Nutrition from Wageningen University, I worked as an agronomist for several fertilizer companies and later I was appointed managing director of the Nutrient Management Institute (NMI) in Wageningen. I then switched to a career in innovation consultancy in the agro & food business. During all these years, my international activities have especially been targeted at China and Germany.
I am an expert on soil science and plant nutrition, but nowadays I am also specialized in bio-based and circular economy, metropolitan agriculture (urban farming) and sustainable management of waste, manure and energy. During my career, I have developed broad expertise on all types of agricultural production, ranging from pig, poultry and dairy husbandry to arboriculture, mushroom growing and horticulture. Even aquaculture and insect farming are not unknown subjects for me. With my extensive network, I can help you to find the right business partners and knowledge in the Dutch agricultural and horticultural sectors.
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HollandDoor Coöperatie U.A.
Agro Business Park 22, 6708 PW Wageningen, the Netherlands
Tel: +31 85 00 20 443, E-mail: info@hollanddoor.nl