THE PROMOTION of animal welfare came to the fore this week at the British Society of Animal Science's conference in Edinburgh, when Dr Laura Boyle, a senior research officer with Teagasc, in Ireland, was given a special award.

She was given the BSAS and RSPCA award for 'Innovative development in animal welfare', and it was presented in recognition of her long-standing research into the welfare of dairy cattle and pigs, plus her contribution to developing carcase lesions as indicators of pig welfare.

This was the 30th anniversary of the award and it continues to challenge conventional thought. Dr Boyle, who has been a passionate researcher and advocate for livestock welfare for almost 25 years, said: “I am honoured and humbled to receive this prestigious award. I hope to use the recognition it affords me to progress both the science and the cause of animal welfare in Ireland and abroad.

"In an era of increasingly polarised views about animal production, I’m particularly keen to use my background in agriculture and animal welfare to bridge the gap between farmers and society.”