|Title||Assessing, and understanding, European organic dairy farmers’ intentions to improve herd health|
|Author(s)||Jones, P.J.; Sok, J.; Tranter, R.B.; Blanco-Penedo, I.; Fall, N.; Fourichon, C.; Hogeveen, H.; Krieger, M.C.; Sundrum, A.|
|Source||Preventive Veterinary Medicine 133 (2016). - ISSN 0167-5877 - p. 84 - 96.|
|Publication type||Refereed Article in a scientific journal|
|Keyword(s)||Farmers’ attitude - Health improvements - Health promotion - Veterinarians|
Many believe the health status of organic dairy herds in Europe should be improved to meet consumers’ and legislators’ expectations to improve animal welfare. This paper reports on a study in four countries that examined dairy farmers’ intentions towards improving the health status of their organic herds through the use of the Theory of Planned Behaviour. It was found that farmers across the countries were positive about taking additional preventative measures to improve the health status of their herds. They believed this would not only improve herd physical performance, such as milk yield and fertility, but also achieve greater cost effectiveness and improved job satisfaction for them. Most study farmers would implement a tailored package of improvement measures designed by the study team with higher uptake most likely being by younger farmers, those who make greater use of veterinarians and professional advisory services, and those supplying specialist milk-marketing chains. Furthermore, farmers will be most likely to take-up additional health promotion if compatible with their everyday activities and if they have strong business performance goals aimed at maximising the physical performance of the herd.