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Tools for welfare assessment and the practical application of an assessment (Food Safety, Animal Welfare and Biosecurity)

Venue: Claudelands Event Centre (Brooklyn 1)
Presenters: David Main and Ngaio Beausoleil
Time: 8.30am - 3.30pm
Format: A mixture of lectures and practical sessions
Limited: Only 25 spaces available
Cost: $155 (Earlybird)

Practical welfare assessment tools are now widely available for many types of animals.  This workshop will examine the types of welfare assessment tools available especially those focusing on the emerging area of positive welfare.  The workshop will consider how and why welfare assessment should be embedded into management and assurance processes. Participants will be encouraged to consider what they want out of an assessment tool and to formulate strategies that deliver change in practice. Whilst the primary focus will be on farm animals the concepts will be relevant for all managed animals.

Who should do this course?

All veterinarians who are interested or involved in the policy and practice of animal welfare.

Learning outcomes

  • Ability to assist in the development of a welfare assessment programme that is linked to promoting change in practice


  • Adopt innovative approaches to welfare improvement
  • Learn from colleagues with similar welfare improvement goals
  • Develop a common approach to welfare improvement


David Main
David is a veterinary surgeon and Professor of Production of Animal Health and Welfare at the Royal Agricultural University. Prior to January 2018 he was based at the Bristol Veterinary School. He has research interests in science and practice of knowledge exchange, animal welfare assessment and improvement strategies and animal welfare education. Former member of the Farm Animal Welfare Council, Food Ethics Council and Soil Association Council. Previous initiatives include the AssureWel project, a collaboration with RSPCA and Soil Association that introduced welfare outcomes into certification schemes and the Healthy Feet Project that has been widely adopted by the UK dairy industry. He was also project co-ordinator for Hennovation, an EU H2020 project that investigated the value of participatory approaches to innovation in the laying hen sector.

Ngaio Beausoleil
Ngaio is Associate Professor in Applied Ethology and Animal Welfare Science and Co-director of the Massey University Animal Welfare Science and Bioethics Centre. Her research employs behavioural and physiological methods to investigate various aspects of animal welfare in both domestic and wild animal species. Major research themes include:
Systematic scientific evaluation of animal welfare; Breathlessness in animals; Humane methods of ‘euthanasia’ and slaughter; Developmental processes, recognition, modulation and alleviation of pain in farm animals; Humane vertebrate pest control; and Welfare impacts associated with wildlife conservation activities.





Exercise: What do you want from an ideal welfare assessment tool?


Lecture: What is happening now? Science and practice of welfare assessment including positive welfare


Lecture: What is happening now? Welfare assessment in New Zealand


Presentations from delegates: What do you want from welfare assessment? (approx. 20)




Lecture: How to use welfare assessment to promote change - Introduction to behaviour change


Group discussion: Action planning; (1) Focus on specific stakeholder (animals, science, farmer, industry, government; (2) How should we use welfare assessment in practice?



Field Trip & Breakfast
Social Activities
Your Stay

The conference is organised and hosted by the New Zealand Veterinary Association.

You can contact us here.

Thank you to our Industry Partners

Bayer NZ Ltd
Boehringer Ingelheim (NZ) Ltd
Provet NZ Pty Ltd
SVS Veterinary Supplies

Animates Vetcare
Ethical Agents
Hill's Pet Nutrition
IDEXX Laboratories
Masterpet Corporation Ltd
Royal Canin
Troy Laboratories (NZ) Ltd
Tru-Test Group

Elanco Animal Health
Flexi Cards Ltd
Gribbles Veterinary Pathology
International Animal Health Products
MSD Animal Health
Norbrook Laboratories
Shoof International Ltd

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