What framework conditions can facilitate the use of livestock protection measures? – First discussion rounds with stakeholders concluded.

LIFEstockProtect aims to increase the willingness of key stakeholders, especially livestock farmers and shepherds, to implement livestock protection measures. Unfortunately, often negative attitude and scepticism towards these measures is predominant and prevents the active use of protection equipment. In order to change this, it is important to understand the most urgent challenges and barriers to implement these protection measures.

In this context, the project conducted three thematic workshops in 2022 to get an overview of the framework conditions needed by stakeholders to adapt to the new circumstances. The goal was further to collect general problems related to pasture livestock farming and discuss future perspectives for this husbandry system.

During the discussions many different aspects came on the table. The most frequently named were:

  1. Insufficient support for pasture livestock farming and the necessary protection measures in national and European funding schemes
  2. Lack of knowledge transfer and consultancy about livestock protection measures and funding opportunities
  3. Lack of professional, well-trained staff, especially shepherds

The participants called for a better support in the preparation and implementation of livestock protection measures, both in terms of targeted funding as well as consultancy. Particular emphasis was placed on the additional personnel costs and workload, which can only be covered with difficulty.

Besides discussions around livestock protection, the meetings also highlighted the pressure pasture livestock farming, especially in the alpine context, is experiencing. Lack of competitiveness on an open market, low rentability with high workload and lack of lobbying for their animal husbandry at EU level were named.

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