Important legal notice
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Animal health and welfare
Animal health and welfare - Improving animal diets and well-being
“For the first time in the EU, experts are adopting an integrated approach to exploiting and disseminating knowledge and skills in bee disease research.”

The problem

The economic importance of apiculture exceeds the production of honey, royal jelly, pollen and wax. As pollinators, bees play a key role in plant reproduction and multiplication and, thus, make an essential contribution to biodiversity, the environment and farming. Viruses are among the disease agents that threaten bee health. The development of strategies for countering bee viruses -in the apiary and at the regulatory level -is hindered by knowledge gaps and by poor integration of the relevant research.

BRAVE  Finding BRAVE new ways of combating bee viruses


The EU-funded BRAVE project will pave the way towards strategies for combating bee viruses. The work includes:

  • A scientific meeting focusing on: bee viruses (taxonomy, distribution, genetics, pathogenicity, diagnosis, latency in bee colonies, mechanisms triggering overt infections), bee immunity, the epidemiology of virus infections in bees, the economic and ecological impacts of viral diseases in bees, regulatory issues (preventing the entry of exotic viruses)
  •  An expert workshop building on the conclusions of the scientific meeting and devoted to: identifying priorities for joint research and formulating recommendations to the European Commission and the World Animal Health Organisation

Contribution to policy development:

  • Knowledge and recommendations likely to have an impact on EU animal health standards/policy and food safety measures (avoiding antiviral chemicals in honey)
  • Knowledge and recommendations likely to have an impact on international trade regulations
  • Building a European Research Area in bee research, with implications for EU competitiveness, agriculture, and the environment

Project deliverables

  • The scientific meeting – Month 4
  • The expert workshop – Month 9
  • A directory of bee scientists in the enlarged EU – Month 12
  • A restricted website – July 2004


  • A public website to showcase project and raise awareness – Month 12
  • Proceedings of the scientific meeting which will eventually be published on website – Month 8
  • Proceedings of the expert workshop which will be published on website – Month 12
  • The directory of bee scientists will facilitate communication and dissemination

Technical information

Project acronym: BRAVE
Project’s official full title: Bee Research and Virology in Europe
Research priority: 1.4. New and more environment friendly production methods to improve animal health and welfare including research on animal diseases such as foot and mouth disease, swine fever and development of marker vaccines
Specific webpage: Not yet available
Proposal/contract no: 513628
Start date: Not available
Kick off meeting: Not available
Completion date: Not available
European Commission scientific officer: Not available

Name: Agence française de sécurité sanitaire des aliments
Abbreviated name: AFSSA
Address: Laboratoire de pathologie des petits ruminants et des abeilles
105, route des Chappes BP 111
F-06902 Sophia Antipolis cedex 
Country: France
Tel: +33 4 92 94 37 00
Fax: +33 4 92 94 37 01


Name: Rothamstead Research
Abbreviated name: RRES
Country: United Kingdom

Name: Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet
Abbreviated name: SLU
Country: Sweden

Name: Università degli studi di Udine
Abbreviated name: UNIUD
Country: Italy

Name: Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittemburg
Abbreviated name: MLU-HALLE
Country: Germany