Cyprus & World News

European award for the Cypriot company VitaTrace Nutrition

30 January, 2014

VitaTrace Nutrition Ltd (VTN) is among 22 Research Institutes, Universities and companies from 11 European members of a consortium who have been awarded the largest ever European Union grant for research into animal health. The total cost involved is €11’970’000 of which €8’920’000 is funded directly by the European Union under the EU Framework 7 Programme (FP7). PROHEALTH is to be led by academics from the University of Newcastle and will extend over 60 months starting on 1st December 2013. It involves basic and applied research into the fields of animal health and animal nutrition in pigs and poultry and also undertakes to pass on the information gained, in practical terms to farmers and enterprises involved in the production of pig and poultry products.

Mr Kyriakos Angastiniotis, the General Manager of VTN welcomed the involvement of his company in this major and important research programme and commented that much of the work with both pigs and poultry will be carried out in Cyprus by the technical team and scientific associates of the company. VTN is a leading animal health and animal nutrition company in Cyprus of 35 years experience in the field, employing some 30 people, many of them veterinarians and animal scientists. Much of its production is exported to Greece, the Balkans and the Middle East. Mr Angastiniotis stressed the importance of the Cyprus involvement in such a prestigious programme in these difficult times. Much will be gained by both the scientific and farming communities in Cyprus as a direct result of this extensive and major research programme, he emphasized. He pointed out that a significant amount of preliminary work had to be carried out in the last year with, and in, the support of the other partners in the consortium to gain the research grant while competing with a number of other similar consortia. He explained that the scientific team, both for the work in Cyprus and also the technical representation of our country at the European level would be led by Dr Sotiris Papasolomontos., who is well known in the fields of animal nutrition and animal health in both academic and industry sectors within the EU.

Mr Angastiniotis stated that Dr. Sotiris Papasolomontos is a graduate from the University of London and has gained both MSc and PhD in the field of Nutritional Biochemistry at the University of Newcastle in Great Britain. He has also studied at the London Business School. He was for a number of years an Executive Director and a member of the Board of Directors of Dalgety plc which was the largest animal nutrition, feed and agronomic supplier of inputs into British Agriculture. In this capacity he directed both the Research and Technical Support teams of Dalgety Agriculture. He has been a Ministerial appointed as a Non-Executive Director of the Home Grown Cereals Authority of Great Britain, a member of its Remuneration Committee and for a number of years chaired its Marketing Information Committee, in its sensitive and economically important quarterly collation and publication of the cereal supply and demand balance sheet of GB. Dr Papasolomontos has been a Secretary of the Scientific Programmes Committee of the British Society of Animal Science and also a President of this Society. He was also a member of the Careers Advisory Council of the Senate of the University of Newcastle and has been involved in industry lead advisory studies for the School of Biology of the University of Leeds and the Scottish Agricultural Colleges. He has been a non-Executive Director of KEGO SA in Greece and currently a Director of IRIDA SA based also in Greece and involved in the field of fish nutrition, biology fish health and genetics.

PROHEALTH is to be led by Professor Ilias Kyriazakis of the University of Newcastle. The Pro-Vice Chancellor of Newcastle University, Professor Steve Homans stated that “Launching in December 2013, the overarching aim of the five-year PROHEALTH project is to improve the competitiveness and sustainability of intensive pig and poultry farming in Europe. The key point of difference is a holistic approach focusing on understanding the multifactorial dimension of animal diseases linked to the intensification of production, and using this knowledge to develop, evaluate, and disseminate effective control and improvement strategies for reducing impact throughout the EU“.