Open Philanthropy recommended a grant of $2,700,000 over five years to the University of Bern to support the work of Michael Toscano’s laboratory. Toscano and his colleagues aim to improve cage-free hen genetics by:
- Phenotyping four of the most popular layer hen strains in cage-free conditions (they are currently bred only in cages).
- Identifying genetic markers associated with positive welfare traits (for example, lower rates of keel bone fractures).
- Working with two large genetics firms to help them integrate these traits into their breeding programs.
This falls within our focus area of farm animal welfare.