“Ecosystems, products, conservation” was the title of the annual international conference held by DAGENE – International Association for the Conservation of Animal Breeds in the Danube Region – and SAVE – Safeguard for Agricultural Varieties in Europe – in Kozárd, Hungary from 24th to 27th of June 2018. The four-day professional meeting was attended by nearly 50 experts from 14 countries.
The Association was established 20 years ago in 1998 to promote the preservation and maintenance of native farm animals of the countries along the river Danube. In addition to scientific research, DAGENE examines the effects of today's living conditions and climate changes influences to the native farm animals. Examination of recent years clearly demonstrates that these native species are better able to adapt to stressful conditions than new ones.
With Baltic cooperation, their activities now extend to 15 countries, and in addition to the Danube valley countries, Switzerland and Georgia also participate in this research and maintenance project. The association has 65 members now, including major research institutes, scientific groups and NGOs.
Last day of the conference participants were visited the Research Centre for Agobiodiversity in Tápiószele and Research Centre for Farm Animal Gene Conservation in Gödöllő, when the experts could get acquainted with the activities of our institution, our major projects and tasks in gene conservation by Tamás Szekelyhidi, deputy director for rural development. During the visit, participants focused on the gene conservation activity of old Hungarian poultry species, freshwater fishes and Pannonic variety of the Carniola (carnica) honeybee.