A word about the project

The objective of aWISH is to develop and offer a cost-efficient solution to evaluate and improve the welfare of meat-producing livestock at a large scale, across Europe. This approach will be developed and evaluated in close collaboration with all actors involved, from primary producers up to policy makers and citizens. At the heart of the aWISH solution is the automated monitoring at the slaughterhouse of complementary animal-based indicators for monitoring welfare on-farm, during (un)loading, transport and slaughter. Besides that, existing or routinely collected data (slaughterhouse data, antibiotics usage, farm data, etc.) and needed technologies on-farm or on- transport to complement the measurements at slaughter will be exploited. Piloting and development activities will be done in 6 broiler chicken and fattening pig production chains across Europe (FR, PL, ES, NL, AT, RS), using a lean multi-actor approach, in order to test and validate the project results. Novel sensor technologies and AI algorithms will be developed, and a

feedback tool and interface will allow each actor in the chain to get direct feedback of each batch, visualize trends and benchmark animal welfare outcomes. An Animal Welfare Indicator Catalogue will disseminate all validated indicators and standardized data collection methods. From the pilot data, animal welfare initiatives taken at operator, chain, regional or national level will be assessed alongside their environmental and socio-economic impact at operator and sector level. Next to that, 9 Best Practice Guides will be developed to improve key welfare issues in pigs and broilers, and to help external actors deploy the aWISH technologies and feedback tool. How the feedback loop guides and motivates each party to take actions to improve animal welfare will be tested in a longitudinal study, and the needs, perceptions and barriers of all actors from farm to fork incl. the consumer will be researched to maximize impact of the aWISH results.


The main objective of aWISH is to develop and offer the capacity to evaluate and improve the welfare of meat-producing livestock throughout Europe via automated monitoring of animal-based welfare indicators at the slaughterhouse in order to give feedback and advice on best practices to those responsible for the various stages of production (farmer, catching team, transporter, slaughterhouse).This approach will be developed and evaluated in close collaboration with all actors involved, from primary producers up to policy makers and citizens.
  • Develop a catalogue of animal welfare indicators (AWI) to assess the welfare of fattening pigs and broiler chickens, covering the various domains of animal welfare and all stages of the production cycle; based on validated measurements collected automatically at the slaughterhouse or routinely on farm / transport.
  • Develop novel automated sensor systems for validated and standardized collection of AWI and (AI) models to aggregate AWI for AW assessment at farm/chain/regional/national level, based on expert validation
  • Pilot the aWISH tools and integrated solution in six regional broiler and pig production chains across Europe (FR, PL, ES, NL, AT, RS), in order to test and validate the project results and to collect standardized data for the further assessment of the impact of the proposed solutions
  • Develop a feedback tool for specific, real-time AW evaluation for each actor in the production cycle (farmer, catching team, transporter, slaughterhouse) and best practice guides (BPGs) with advice towards AW improvements
  • Investigate the AW status and effect of AW improvement strategies (best practices) on operator and regional/national level, via an integrated AW assessment and a spontaneous intervention study
  • Investigate the socio-economic and environmental impact of AW improvement strategies, with the inclusion of the needs, perceptions and barriers of all actors from farm to fork incl. the consumer
Create awareness and engagement of the multi-actor community, via a participative approach with all stakeholders involved, and the communication and dissemination of the project results via multiple routes, in order to maximise the impact and exploitation of the results

Overall methodology:

This project will build the capacity to improve farm AW at large scale level as effectively and efficiently as possible. This aspiration is reflected in the focus on broilers and pigs, and in the methodological approach. Figure 1 depicts the key concept of aWISH with the following main results:

(1)AW data: broiler and pig AWI measured with automated technologies at the slaughterhouse, routine and existing data sources; with guidance on what to measure and how bundled in an AWI Catalogue;

(2) aWISH data platform and feedback tool: a centralized data platform that generates feedback and benchmarking visualisations for the various actors in the production chain;

(3) Integrated animal welfare assessment: based on the collected data, methodologies for aggregated AW assessment at farm, chain, regional/national level are developed and a spontaneous intervention study will evaluate the impact of the entire feedback loop on AW;

(4) Guidance on best practices (BPs) incl. impact assessment: guidelines for BPs to improve AW (Best Practice Guides (BPGs)), incl. results of impact assessment on environmental and socio-economic level of these BPs;

(5) Supporting mechanisms: stakeholder engagement incl. expert panel, lean multi-actor approach and piloting activities, and a multi-dimensional impact assessment of proposed BPs (AW, socio-economic and environmental assessment).


The core of the project is formed by 6 Pilots, which are:
  • Pilot 1: Gelderland, the Netherlands + extensions to the rest of the Netherlands and Germany
  • Pilot 2: Catalonia, Spain + extensions to the rest of Spain
  • Pilot 3: Yonne, France + extensions to France, the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Poland, Bulgaria
  • Pilot 4: Poland + extensions towards France, the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, Poland
  • Pilot 5: (second phase): Upper Austria, Austria + extensions towards the rest of Austria
  • Pilot 6: (second phase): Vojvodina, Serbia + extensions towards the rest of Serbia

Work packages:

Communication, dissemination and exploitation
WP leader
WP coleader
EV ILVO, Eurogroup for Animals, White Research, INNOVACC, IGBZ
M1 – M48
to interact with stakeholders (from farm to fork) and ensure the communication, dissemination and exploitation of the project results. Design and implement a detailed Communication, Dissemination, and Exploitation (CD&E) plan  Communicate and disseminate the outcomes of the project at multi-actor level  Demonstrate BPGs and innovative tools for large scale AW evaluation and improvement (AWI catalogue)  Develop awareness and engage the multi-actor community (from farm to fork)  Exploit the results after the project implementation, to enhance the impact
Animal welfare indicators and catalogue
WP leader
Dep. Vet. & Anim. Sci., Univ. Copenhagen (UCPH)
WP coleader
M1 – M48
to develop an animal welfare indicators (AWI) catalogue to assess the welfare of fattening pigs and broilers: including indicators validated to assess specific problems arising in the various AW domains, covering all stages of the production cycle, i.e., on farm rearing, loading, transport, and slaughter, that are routinely recorded, or measurable at the farm or slaughterhouse by (almost: TRL≥8) available technologies.
  • Compile a list of valid AWI for fattening pigs and broiler chickens
  • Determine whether there is appropriate data collection or technology available in the market or TRL≥8 to measure each indicator and to identify areas that deserve further research.
  • Determine the characteristics of each indicator and methodology, including validity and feasibility, to aid decision making on the selection of most suitable indicators.
  • Determine which of the stages of production and AW domains that a given indicator is assessing based on existing literature or data analysis / experimental work when necessary.
  • Weigh / develop an algorithm based on the selected AWI using expert and relevant stakeholders’ opinion in order to select appropriate combinations and aggregate AWI at farm, chain, regional and national level
The results of WP2 will flow directly into WP3 and WP4; practical experiences from the pilots in WP3 and the AW assessment and improvement in WP4 will flow back to WP2 for further updates of the AWI catalogue. WP2 works closely with T5.5 for consultation of stakeholders and expert panel for T2.2 and T2.3.
Technology development and large-scale piloting
WP leader
WP coleader
Pilot leaders
M1 – M48
WP3 will organize six pilots, i.e. chains of business operators across EU where there will be novel technology development and large-scale data collection for measuring AW and socio-economic and environmental impacts. WP3 will facilitate the entire journey of the pilot sites from conceptualization of the plans through assistance in implementation and following up on sites’ results. WP3 will:
  • Prepare the pilots, the installations and technologies and establish an implementation plan and timeline
  • Set up standardized data collection protocols, data sharing agreements, and organize data exchange with WPs
  • Support the pilots by finding synergies and joint activities between them
  • Serve as a facilitator between other WPs and pilots
  • Monitor and evaluate activities, extracting validation results, KPIs and lessons learned of pilots
Monitoring and improving animal welfare
WP leader
WP coleader
M1 – M48
to develop the tools and recommendations for AW assessment and improvement, through the development of a feedback and benchmarking tool for business operators (monitoring), BPGs (improving), and assessing impact of certain practices on AW.
  • Develop (a) central data platform and (b) user interface for business operators (farmers, loaders, transporters,slaughterhouse at all 6 pilots) to receive direct feedback of each batch, benchmarking vs. comparable operators
  • Improving AW / assessing the impact on AW improvements via (a) the aWISH automated monitoring and feedback loop, (b) identification of risk&success factors for AW outcomes, (c) evaluation of welfare-improving initiatives imposed by an operator or by regional/national authorities, (d) spontaneous intervention study
  • Development of BPGs for fattening pigs and broiler chickens, for the different stages of the production chain, and linked to certain AWI, for recommendations on actions to undertake for AW improvements
Assessment of socio-economic and environmental impacts of animal welfare improvement strategies
WP leader
WP coleader
White Research
M1 – M48
to assess the socio-economic and environmental impact of certain AW improvement strategies to provide a systemic overview of impacts (together with AW impact from WP4), and to identify incentives and barriers for adoption in order to enlarge the impact of the project results
  • Socio-economic and environmental assessment making use of data from pilots and intervention studies
  • Improving AW /Econ. comparison of improved AW strategies with current state of the art (costs and benefits of value chain)
  • Looking for synergies and minimizing trade-offs between AW improvement and environmental impacts
  • Social analysis of the needs, perceptions, constraints and willingness to pay for AW improvement (marketability) of value chain actors and consumers
  • Engagement of key actors & stakeholders in an expert panel and setting up of a collaborative network
Project management and coordination
WP leader
WP coleader
WP Leads
M1 – M48
efficient and pro-active project management and coordination
  • Ensure the effective administration of project activities according to the GA and EU regulations
  • Ensure efficient liaison with the EC and with related projects and initiatives on AW
  • Perform continuous project monitoring and stimulate effective collaborations, efficient coordination and communication between WPs, and between the consortium and external parties.
  • Ensure that all project outcomes are of high quality, meet their objectives on-time and with foreseen resources
  • Ensure a multi-actor approach with adequate involvement of relevant partners / stakeholders
  • Identify and monitor risks and take appropriate mitigation actions.
  • Set-up and monitor effective mechanisms for data management, ethical issues and gender equality

Stay up to date

Enter your name and email below and hit the subscribe button in order to keep up with the latest project news

Funded by the European Union.
Views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or European Commission.
Neither the European Union nor the European Commission can be held responsible for them.

Copyright © 2023 BioSense Institute. All rights reserved.

1. aWISH Introduction

We would like to invite you to participate in the aWISH Expert Panel, as we believe that your experience and knowledge will contribute greatly to a key consultation body of the project. aWISH is a 4-year project funded by the European Union under the Horizon Europe Research and Innovation programme. Before you decide to participate in the aWISH Expert Panel, please take the time to read this document carefully to understand what your involvement will be in our project’s activity. If there is anything you do not understand, please feel free to ask questions.

1.1 What is the aWISH project about?

In the EU, a challenge that still remains is to reconcile the social and moral demand for a high level of animal welfare with other pillars of sustainable livestock production. Indeed, 82% of Europeans believe that farm animals should be better protected than they currently are. A broad definition of animal welfare refers to the feelings and physical well-being of an individual animal. Broilers and pigs are the farm animals EU citizens care most about, and they are also the most important meat-producing animals in the EU and worldwide. Both pigs and broilers have significant welfare problems at all stages of production (on-farm, loading and transport, unloading and slaughter), leading a growing number of citizens to question the social license to produce. Ambitious and effective, but also practical and efficient solutions are needed. This is where the aWISH project comes in to fill this gap! The aim of aWISH is to develop and provide a cost-effective solution for assessing and improving the welfare of meat-producing livestock in Europe. The aWISH solution is based on the automatic monitoring of animal-related indicators at slaughter. The necessary technologies will also be developed to collect complementary data on farm or during transport. Pilot and development activities will be carried out in 6 broiler and fattening pig production chains across Europe using a lean multi-actor approach to test and validate the project results. A catalogue of animal welfare indicators will disseminate all validated indicators and standardised data collection methods. Best practice guides will be developed to improve key aspects of animal welfare in pigs and broilers and to help external stakeholders use aWISH technologies and tools. In this context, the aWISH project will set up expert panels that will be composed of representatives of actors from the entire farm to fork value chain across the EU. The expert panels will have the function to retrieve and share feedback on technology, processes, farming practices, industry, sector regulation and markets, as well as society and perceptions. In this way, stakeholder participation in expert panels could help initiate interdisciplinary dialogue, promote interaction with target groups and associations, and strengthen trust between different actors.

2. Useful Information

2.1 Is my participation voluntary and what does it involve?

Your participation in the aWISH project is entirely voluntary. If you decide to participate in an aWISH activity, we will ask you to sign an Informed Consent Form to collect and process your data. The project will last 48 months, but you will only participate for as long as you wish.

2.2 Purpose of personal data collection

As mentioned above, the expert panel will have the function to retrieve and share feedback on technology, processes, farming practices, industry, sector regulation and markets, as well as society and perceptions. In order to do this effectively, we need to process some of your personal data:
  • Your contact information
  • Demographic information (age, gender, country of origin)
  • Professional information (where do you work, what position do you hold, what is your area of expertise)
  • Personal opinions on the subject

2.3 What we will do with your data

The information you provide is confidential. Your consent form will be kept separate from the observations collected during the course of the project activity. We will share your data with other aWISH project partners involved in the data analysis and reporting process. Once the data is analysed, a report of the findings may be submitted for publication. The project's deliverables that will be derived by this activity will not include your personal data or any other information that could identify you. The results of this project activity may also be shared with representatives of the European Union (e.g. the Project Officer evaluating the project's or the reviewing EU agencies). Only broad trends will be reported and it will not be possible to identify any individuals.

3. Access, deletion of information or withdrawal of consent

Under the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), you have the right to request to: (i) provide you with a copy of your data; (ii) correct your data if you believe they are inaccurate; (iii) erase your data; (iv) restrict or stop processing your data; or (v) provide your data in an appropriate format and transfer them to another organisation. In addition, you may withdraw your consent and therefore your participation at any time without consequence. Anonymous data already collected will be used as we cannot trace the information back to you. No further data will be collected or other procedures carried out in relation to your information. If you wish to have the personal data we hold checked, amended, corrected or deleted, or if you wish to withdraw your consent, you can contact the responsible partner listed below.

4. Contact Information

e-mail: akyriakidis@white-research.eu

5. Informed Consent Form

I confirm that I understand that by ticking each box below I am consenting to this element of the study. I understand that it will be assumed that unticked boxes mean that I DO NOT consent to that part of the study. I also understand that by not giving consent for any of the elements, I may be deemed ineligible for participating in this project’s activity.

6. Declaration of Acceptance

I, the undersigned
acknowledge that I have read and agree to be bound by the aWISH Expert Panel Terms of Reference. I agree to participate in the aWISH Expert Panel in my individual capacity and, as such, may not assign or be substituted for any other person to perform the work without prior written agreement with the aWISH Expert Panel Consortium. I agree not to disclose any information given in the course of the Expert Panel’s work unless the aWISH Consortium agrees to releases me from this obligation, and to respects the confidentiality requirements. I declare that I fully and unconditionally accept my appointment as an aWISH Expert Panel member as described in the Terms of Reference. I agree that any contribution I make as an aWISH Expert Panel member may be used by the aWISH consortium for reporting purposes or to align project activities to the needs of relevant stakeholders. I consent to the processing of my personal data necessary for my participation in the aWISH Expert Panel.

Welcome to the awISH Project website

Before we dig in we would like to know a little more about you. Group that describes you the best is: