Safety and risk prevention in the livestock and meat sectors

The D-NL border region has one of the highest livestock densities in Europe. Here you can find companies of the whole meat producing chain. Therefore, there is a high interest in a systematic control of zoonoses and animal diseases as well as in an improvement of food safety – thematic priorities of the SafeGuard project.

Source: Hans Udry/

One of the most important economic sectors of the border region of Germany/Netherlands, farming and the food industry, is constantly under pressure to adapt in order to maintain its competitiveness on national and international markets. High wage levels in Germany and the Netherlands demand that technical and organisational progress is speeded up in order to maintain the employment and value-added potentials in the animal processing industry in the future, or to exploit it even further. Against this background, experts from North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony and the Netherlands systematically analysed the strengths and weaknesses of prevention, control and monitoring measures right through to crisis management in the agro-business sector.

Representatives of the respective agricultural ministries, government authorities of the Länder, rural districts and towns of the border region, business enterprises and research institutes defined the core issues which are highly relevant for the economy and society at regional and supraregional level. On both sides of the border it has become clear that the systematic combating of zoonoses and epizootics and the improving of food safety and quality are a key factor for one of the most densely populated regions of Europe.

Through targeted promotion of the transfer of technology and knowledge between research institutes and industry as well as official government organisations the project will set new standards in the areas of organisational processes (risk-oriented food monitoring, early warning systems, fighting economic crime, crisis management, information and communication models, etc.) as well as technical innovations (web-based data warehouse solutions, effect-oriented analytics, diagnostics, e-learning, etc.) in value-added chains for food derived from animal husbandry.

Through systematically pooling and promoting existing potentials a cross border “Agro-Business” cluster is being established which – with its economic and innovative power – will act as an exemplary model far beyond the promotion region.

Note: The name “SafeGuard” stands for Sound Animals and healthy Food within the Euregio Guaranteed by a United Approach [between Dutch and German / public and private entities] that facilitates averting danger in Rural [cross border] Districts.



SafeGuard is implemented under the INTERREG IV A programm Deutschland-Nederland and co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), by the federal states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony, the Dutch Ministerie van Landbouw, Natuur en Voedselkwaliteit and the provinces of Gelderland, Overijssel, Drenthe, Friesland, Noord-Brabant, Limburg and Groningen. It is supported by the programme management of the Euregio Rhein-Waal.

  • Funding programme: INTERREG IV A
  • Budget: 9.3 MM Euro
  • Term: 07/08 - 06/13
  • Partners: GIQS + 34