NIBIO is a project driven research institute and collects approximately 100 million NOK annually in project funding from both national and international sources. A lot of activity is carried out through EU and EEA-projects and we also participate in research projects in Asia, Africa and Latin America. NIBIO coordinates several large international projects with a particular focus on food security and climate change. The list of projects is not complete.


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Refined forage legumes as local sources of protein feed for monogastrics and high quality fibre feed for ruminants in organic production

Protein supplementation is a challenge in organic livestock production. Use of imported protein feeds on organically managed farms limits the recycling of nutrients. Fractionation of forage legumes, through novel harvesting and biorefining techniques, into protein- and fibre-rich feeds for monogastrics and ruminants, respectively, can increase farm self-sufficiency with feed. Economic, environmental and social sustainability needs to be taken into account when developing concepts for localised food systems.
Mathematical models will be developed for protein yields of lucerne and red clover. Leaf stripping and juice production will be studied in experiments located in different regions in Europe and Turkey and assessed for feed value in monogastrics and ruminants. Concepts of local food systems based on fractionation of lucerne and red clover will be assessed for sustainability. A participatory approach will be used to involve stakeholder groups in the project, and to ensure an effective dissemination of the results. Farmers will be interviewed to study attitudes towards self-sufficiency and barriers for cooperation that may be required in implementing localised food systems.
The proposed project will establish important knowledge about how to improve self-sufficiency in organic livestock production. Farmers and feed industry will learn how to produce local feed for both monogastrics and ruminants by fractionating forage legumes. An assessment of economic, environmental and social aspects can be used to adapt sustainable local food systems in different regions.
Through this new knowledge, the organic agricultural sector will be able to reduce the amount of imported feeds in Europe by increased utilisation of regional biological resources. This complies also with the social demand from consumers requesting 100% of the feeds to be derived from the farm or region (EC, 2013), and the Bioeconomy Strategy of the European Commission (EC, 2015).

Finished Updated: 20.05.2022
End: mar 2021
Start: apr 2018
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FORUT-Nutrient supply and productivity in organic forage and milk production - improved forage production based on local resources

Organic milk production has become more intensive, which has led to increased focus on forage quality. The primary growth (PG) is harvested at an earlier stage of development with the consequence that more than half of the total yearly yield is from the regrowth (RG). The RG contains high proportion of clover. Thus, the RG forage has likely high crude protein content, while the PG forage has high energy value but low protein content. The use of fish meal as feed is now prohibited and alternative feed protein sources are expensive. The value of on-farm grown forage is therefore becoming even higher. The project aims to bring to light knowledge that makes dairy farmers better prepared to produce forage in high quantities and qualities as allowed by local climate and resources, adapt forage and milk production better to these constraints, and to assess the economics, resource use and environmental impacts linked to forage production and feed rations with high forage quality. Specifically, the research conducted in the project seeks to answer the following questions: - When ought the RG to be harvested? - Are early red clover varieties better suited than late ones to sustain high yields and even out differences in forage yield and quality between cuts in intensive harvesting regimes? - Will other grasses than timothy and meadow fescue perform better as companion species to red clover under intensive harvesting regimes? Are grass species and variety mixtures that have less synchronous generative development to be chosen? - How should forage with high clover proportion be preserved in order to attain high forage protein quality? - Is it possible to utilize that PG and RG silages have different quality by mixing them in certain proportions at feeding? - What is won and what is lost in economic terms when forage production is intensified? - Will a mixing of PG and RG silages at feeding reduce methane emission and nitrogen loss in the cow and from the slurry storage

Finished Updated: 16.11.2017
End: sep 2015
Start: jan 2011