Animal Production Science
Food safety for products of animal origin


The School of Veterinary Medicine of Milano was established in 1791. In 1805 the school was officially recognized and reformed by Napoleon Bonaparte into a 3 year degree course in equine and ruminant medicine. During the Austrian dominion the curriculum was modified according to the Viennese model with several degrees and awarding diplomas as farrier, equine medical doctor, municipal veterinary official, veterinary surgeon. In 1858 a single  three year Veterinary Diploma was introduced that in 1860 was integrated, under the  Ministry of Public Education by the Italian Kingdom, awarding the qualification of “Doctor in Veterinary Medicine”.
In 1927 the School moved to the premises that are currently utilized for major teaching, research and for the small animal clinics. In 1932 the School was transformed into the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine and included in the system of the University of Milano . In 1968, in the Faculty, a 5 year Degree Course in Animal Production Science was established, while more recently other courses in the area of Animal science and Veterinary Biotechnology have been introduced. In 2005, the large animal facilities were moved to the city of Lodi, where an experimental Farm has been recently opened (2008). Within a few years time, the entire Veterinary Faculty will be moved adjacent to the Large Animal Hospital and the experimental Farm in Lodi.


The Department of Veterinary Sciences and Technologies for Food Safety (VSA) caries out research in numerous and disparate areas. However this research has single aim of ensuring a high level of food safety for products of animal origin. The importance of studying and controlling procedures for producing human foods from animal sources has been emphasized by episodes of food crisis that have severely shaken the publics’ confidence in the livestock production and food supply systems. These events induced the EU to develop a food safety policy backed up by legislation. The main aims of this policy are: i) To ensure the safety of human foods from animal sources, with recognition that an essential first step in ensuring that feeds supplied to animals for consumption must be themselves safe and healthy. ii) To ensure efficient control of the productive process, requiring that certain ingredients should be traceable throughout the food chain.

The work of the VSA is therefore of a multidisciplinary nature, spanning the entire food production sector and including food inspection, nutrition and animal feeding, food chemistry and biochemistry, feed technology, veterinary toxicology and chemotherapy, physiology of economically important animals, functional anatomy of digestive apparatus, animal housing, farm building technology to ensure animal welfare, product quality, and respect for the environment, and food hygiene. In many of these areas the techniques of molecular biology, and in vivo and in vitro experimentation are being applied as instruments of research, diagnosis and monitoring.
The VSA’s research is supported by Italian funding authorities, European programs and by public and private institutions in Italy and abroad. The VSA also provides a flourishing consultancy service that promotes the transfer of new knowledge on food safety to the production sector.

Scientist involved in COST Action Feed for Health: Luciano Pinotti

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University of Milan, ItalyNofima, NorwayNorwegian School of Veterinary Science, NorwayNorwegian University of Life Sciences (UMB), NorwayInstitute for Agricultural and Fisheries Research (ILVO), BelgiumWalloon Agricultural Research Centre, BelgiumFaculty of Bioscience Engineering, BelgiumUniversity of Reading, United KingdomBeacon Research, United KingdomRowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, United KingdomInstitute of Food and Health (UCD), IrelandHuman and animal physiology, Animal Sciences Wageningen University, The NetherlandsVeterinary Physiology, University of Bern, SwitzerlandAgroscope Liebefeld-Posieux, SwitzerlandTrakia University, BulgariaInstitute of Animal Reproduction and Food Research, PolandDepartment of Genetics and Biotechnology, Aarhus University, DenmarkDepartment of Animal Health, Welfare and Nutrition, Aarhus University, DenmarkLithuanian Veterinary Academy, LithuaniaINCDBNA, RomanieUniversity of Cordoba, SpainUniversity of Barcelona, SpainInstitute of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Sciences, EstoniaInstitute of Bioresources (IBA), RomaniaInstitute of Crop Research, Czech RepublicUniversity of Copenhagen, DenmarkMTT Agrifood Research, FinlandResearch Institute for the Biology of Farm Animals (FBN), GermanyUniversity of Helsinki, FinlandInstitute of Food Technology, SerbiaINRA, FranceInstitute of Animal Science, Czech RepublicFaculty of Agriculture, CroatiaAgricultural University of Athens, GreeceAgricultural Research and Education Centre, AustriaSERIDA, Spain
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University of Milan Partner March 2009
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