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Institute of Epidemiology (IfE)

Innovations for healthy and “happy” cows (IGG) – Future Dairy Barns


Duration: 01.06.2021 – 31.11.2024

Funding: Federal Office for Agriculture and Food (BLE); FKZ 28N303904





Research objectives:

Establishment of an innovation network
that focuses in particular on the animal, its needs, behavior, sensory perception and husbandry environment, and develops solutions that enhance the well-being of dairy cows.

Barn construction concept for “Future Dairy Barns”
All innovative solutions developed by the innovation network during the first project phase (01.06.2021 - 30.11.2021) resulted in a holistic barn construction concept for “Future Dairy Barns”.

Construction of experimental and demonstration barns 
The construction of the barns planned under these aspects as test and demonstration barns at the Dummerstorf and Grub sites was finally approved in December 2021. In the future, the new buildings will contribute to answering innovative research questions in the field of animal welfare and to the development of “Future Dairy Barns” in practice.

Research projects accompanying construction
In addition, a number of research projects will be carried out at the cooperation partners' respective facilities during the construction phase. The findings from the studies, which deal, for example, with the sensory perception of cattle, mother-bound calf rearing or animal welfare and health in composting dairy barns, can thus be directly incorporated into the construction planning of the “barns of the future”.


  • Digitalization and automation concepts in dairy barns - Precision Dairy Farming.
  • Computer for detecting activity, posture, and behavior of cattle.
  • Economic evaluation and development of expansion and marketing strategies for "Future Dairy Barns”.
  • Effects of ultrasonic emissions from barn equipment on cattle behavior.
  • Evaluation of lying comfort and hoof health in composting barns.
  • Development of a data management concept and establishment of the data infrastructure.
  • Develop a comprehensive biosecurity approach including hygiene and animal health analysis in cattle herds.
  • To investigate the effects of offering a self-separation facility to mother and calf at the time of birth and its influence on animal welfare.
  • Microbiology of compost
Braunweiße Kühe auf der Wiese

Photo: Laura Weber


Project site: https://www.igg-projekt.de/

Involved IfE scientists:

Dr. Timo Homeier-Bachmann
Dr. Martin Oettler
Anne Schütz (Postdoc)
Sarah Jahn (PhD student)

Project coordination:

Hochschule Neubrandenburg

Project partner:

Hochschule Neubrandenburg (Link: www.hs-nb.de )
Forschungsinstitut für Nutztierbiologie (FBN Dummerstorf) (Link: www.fbn-dummerstorf.de )
Landwirtschaftliches Bildungszentrum Echem (LBZ Echem der LWK NDS) (Link: www.lbz-echem.de )
Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover (TiHo Hannover) (Link: www.tiho-hannover.de )
Sächsisches Landesamt für Umwelt, Landwirtschaft und Geologie (Link: www.lfulg.sachsen.de)
Bayrische Landesanstalt für Landwirtschaft (LfL Poing) (Link: www.lfl.bayern.de )