UZWIL, SWITZERLAND — After 10 months of training, the latest group of students received a diploma from the Swiss Institute of Feed Technology (SFT).

Fifteen participants took part in the 37th diploma course from January to October, with 10 receiving their diplomas. The students deepened their knowledge in feed milling in self-study and in the eight-week intensive block attendance phase in Uzwil, Switzerland.

“As a result, they are now among the experts in their field and among the almost 600 graduates who have completed the diploma course since 1979,” said Lothar Driller, managing director of the SFT.

The importance of the feed milling industry is increasing in many countries due to increasing meat consumption. In addition to increasing demand, the requirements are constantly increasing: Rising raw material prices, changing customer preferences, but also ensuring feed safety presents feed millers with ever new challenges. The training at the SFT offers an optimal basis for mastering them in the future.

The training covers a broad range of information from the basics of the individual process steps, plant design, animal nutrition and feed safety to new sensor technologies.

“With this tool, the graduates qualify to take on management tasks and successfully continue to build up the industry,” Driller said.

Special honor was given to the best in class of the year at the graduation ceremony. Mateo Rodriguez, who studied veterinary medicine and is from Ecuador, received the honor this year with the grade of 89% (5.45).

The aim of the diploma course as a feed milling engineer is to enable the participants to complete the training in parallel with their professional duties. For this reason, the attendance time is only eight weeks, usually divided into two blocks.

Due to COVID-19 and the limited possibility of travel activities, the SFT decided this year to merge the two intensive blocks in the autumn. In advance to the eight-week teaching block in Switzerland, the course participants had to independently work on topics and provide proof of achievement, with a total of 20 subject areas being worked on.

During the intensive course, the students took a total of 13 written exams. The highlight and conclusion of each individual block were the two oral exams in the core topics in front of a committee of experts.

The next diploma course in compound feed technology will start in January 2022 and will take place in German — again under normal conditions.