Hologenomics for Sustainable Food Production

17.07.2019 - 02:59 pm

Food sustainability has become a global concern both for consumers and food production companies. There are many unknowns related to optimising food production, in particular with regards to natural food additives such as pre and probiotics in order to encourage growth and wellbeing of farmed animals. However, there is still much to be discovered as to the impact of such additives on the animal microbiome, and on the animal itself. Unless a more holistic approach is taken, whereby both the host animal and their respective microbiome is examined together in their response to their diet, attempts for improving feed additives may never reach their full potential.

To address this issue, a newly funded Innovation action, HoloFood (HoloGenomics for sustainable food solution) showcases a holistic approach that will improve the efficiency of food production systems, by attempting to decipher the molecular and physiological processes triggered by feed additives across animals with different genetic background, and raised under different controlled environments.

All participants at the HoloFood Kick-off meeting in Copenhagen. January 2019

HoloFood held it's Kick-off meeting in January 2019 in Copenhagen, Denmark. A total of 56 participants took part consisting of consortium members , the HoloFood advisory board and representatives from the European Commission. A number of talks and presentations were held detailing the project activity and partners roles in each work package. Many partners were meeting in person for the first time and the meeting also provided the great opportunity for newly hired HoloFood partners to meet. As the HoloFood Project Coordinator, Prof. Tom Gilbert of the University of Copenhagen said: "Much still remains to be learnt about how gut microbiomes impact animal production. HoloFood allows us to significantly expand our understanding between animal – microbiome – diet relationships using a holo-omic framework. This will have very interesting and long lasting impacts both from a research perspective and from an industry perspective. Most importantly it bridges together so many disciplines from industry and academia but with the common denominator of future sustainable food solutions.”

HoloFood is one of four projects funded under the EU call "Microbiome Applications for sustainable food systems" (LC-SFS-03-2018). 

EU flag

This project has received funding from the European Unionʼs Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 817729.