International Conference on Cultured Meat (Maastricht, Netherlands) – 9th to 11th October
What is cultured meat? Cultured meat involves harvesting muscle cells from a living animal and nurturing those cells until they begin to multiply. What results from this process is laboratory-produced meat which possesses a taste and texture identical to “regular” meat but without requiring the death of an animal. WAN has long promoted the application of the “3Rs” concept, a concept developed for application to the use of animals in research, to animals used in food productionhave(see our past blog on livestock in development). For this reason WAN is keenly interested in cultured meat research which has the potential to reduce and replace the use of animals raised and slaughtered in inhumane conditions.The conference took place from October 9th to October 11th at the Netherland’s Maastricht University and was the second running of this event.
The event featured keynote speakers from around the world interested in this more sustainable manner of meat production. Some items on the program include the following: How to Involve Governments in Supporting Cultured Meat, Meathooked: Why Most People Don’t Want to Give Up Meat, and Mass Production of Avian Muscle Cells: Establishing a Publicly Accessible Immortal Turkey Cell Line. In addition to these presentations, there are multiple networking events, free coffee and snacks provided. Regardless of whether the idea has you intrigued or left in a state of indigestion, this controversial conference may help provide a more painless future for animals worldwide. You can find out more about the event and keep informed ahead of next year’s conference, at their website.
International Companion Animal Welfare Conference in Croatia (Dubrovnik, Croatia) 11th to 13th of October
Each year, the International Companion Animal Welfare Conference (ICAWC) brings together 250 delegates from 39 different countries to fight for the rights of dogs and other companion animals. Their penultimate goal is to create a world where no companion animal dies for the lack of responsible owners. ICAWC does this by focusing on seven key initiatives: education, population control, rabies elimination, dog exploitation, dog adoption, dog care innovation, and emergency canine care. This year’s conference was held at a lovely cliff-side hotel in Dubrovnik, Croatia and was run in conjunction with the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, Dog’s Trust. Attendees had the opportunity to attend workshops, participate in two separate networking dinners, and tour Dubrovnik. This conference also serves as a meeting place for members of the EU Dogs and Cat Alliance.
If you do not speak Croatian, that’s not a problem. Keeping their global-presence in mind, many of the keynote lectures for this conference were presented simultaneously in Croatian and English. While there are many more lectures and presentations available, here’s a short list of what discussions at this year's conference: Cat Friendly Homing: How the System Works, Ask The Vet Interactive Workshop, and Mission Possible: Running an Abandoned Animal Control Program in Eastern Europe. Attendees can also secure some free animal handling equipment donated by SNIP International, MDC Exports, and Cats Protection. While unfortunately it is too late to attend this year's conference, you can take a look at their website. If you want to attend next time, the 2017 event will take place in Vancouver, Canada.
India for Animals Conference (Mumbai, India) – 21st to 23rd October
Held this year from October 21st to October 23rd in Mumbai, the India for Animals Conference brings together animal organizations and animal activists across India for networking and idea exchange. This annual event is organized each year by the Federation of Indian Animal Protection Organizations (FIAPO) to mark the nation’s celebration of animal welfare. In addition to providing updates on animal initiatives across the country, this event offers a chance to hold meaningful dialogues about how best to move these issues forward. The conference offers a variety of lectures, presentations, discussions, small-group breakouts and workshops to drive meaningful progress in animal welfare across all of India.
Keynote speakers this year include the 2003 Time Magazine Environmental Hero Award winner Vandana Shiva, the UN’s special raporter on Human Rights, and the co-founder of Animal Aid Unlimited. These experts, and many more, will spread their knowledge with attendees on the following subjects: Companion Animals: Breeding and Pet Shops, Legal Enforcement, Animals Used in Experimentation, and The Big Debate: Shift of focus of Movement in India from Reactive Rescue to Proactive. You can learn more about this event at their website.