The COST action IPEMA aims at facilitating the development of integrated solutions for the development of alternatives to the surgical castration of piglets, namely raising entire males and immunocastration.

For that purpose, we will try our best to:

  • Coordinate research to increase efficiency
    •  Avoid waste of time and money (“reinventing the wheel”)
    • Avoid redundancies between national programmes
  • Fill knowledge gaps
    • Between different areas in Europe
    • Between science and stakeholders


We are organised according to 6 working groups.
We also have groups in charge of STSMs (Short Term Scientiifc Missions), Dissemination and Inclusiveness of countries who are less advanced in the research or where people feel less concerned by the issues around piglet castration.



Our specific objectives

  • To guide breeding programmes for meat production systems with entire males to address specific quality issues (boar taint, tenderness, intramuscular fat content, fat quality) and reduce aggressive and sexual behaviour;
  • To develop nutritional concepts for entire males and immunocastrates to meet their nutritional requirements and address specific quality issues;
  • To define entire male specific housing and management conditions to address the new welfare issues due to male specific behaviour;
  • To evaluate innovations in grading and meat quality control systems, including boar taint detection and assessment of other important traits;
  • To promote and assist innovations in the processing industry to adapt products to the different characteristics of pork from entire males and immunocastrates;
  • To develop specific information strategies for different European countries, as well as export markets to increase the acceptance of entire males and immunocastration;
  • To improve exchange of knowledge between the various areas of Europe as well as between scientists and stakeholders involved in the pork production chains.


Click here for a detailed description of IPEMA, "Innovative Approaches in Pork Production with Entire Males"



Ulrike WEILER, e-mail, COST profile

Michel BONNEAU, e-mail, COST profile

Scientific Officer:
Mafalda QUINTAS, e-mail, COST profile

Administrative Officer:
Rose CRUZ SANTOS, e-mail, COST profile