Anoxia – Applying the technique

Anoxia technique


High expansion foam

The Anoxia technique is unique for creating an environment without oxygen under atmospheric circumstances. High expansion foam is produced by mixing nitrogen, a mixture of water and specially developed high expansion detergent. The expansion rate is upto 1:1000, meaning that 1 litre of water/foam agent mix expands up to 1 m3 foam. Due to the specially designed foam generator, the high expansion foam bubbles are filled with a > 99% concentration of nitrogen. Therefore, the oxygen level surrounding the animal drops from 21% in atmospheric air to < 1 % once the animal is submerged in the foam.

Convulsions, but no stress or pain

The animals need a constant supply of oxygen to the brain. Applying Anoxia foam, the oxygen is replaced by nitrogen. As a result the nitrogen level is raised to > 99% and the oxygen level is lowered to < 1%. Considering the natural reaction to sudden lack of oxygen the animal is rendering quickly into unconsciousness. As a consequence, behavioral indicators like loss of posture and convulsions will appear. With this in mind, unconscious animals are insensitive to perceive unpleasant sensations like pain.

How Anoxia foam is created

First of all, a mixture of 97% water and 3% high expansion foam agent is sprayed into the Anoxia foam generator, creating a thin film on the outlet of the generator. At the same time, nitrogen is added with overpressure into the foam generator. The nitrogen expands when it exits the generator. This creates a robust high expansion foam. The high expansion foam bubbles are filled with > 99% nitrogen.

Single foam generator systems

In practice, one Anoxia foam generator creates a volume of up to 750 liter of high expansion foam per minute. This volume is more than sufficient to fill a wheelie-bin container within 30 seconds. The most common container volumes are:


  • M size – 240 liter;
  • L size – 340 liter;
  • XL size – 370 liter

The choice of the volume of the container depends of the size of the animal and/or the number of animals that need to be stunned/killed. A lid with a chiffon seals the container. As soon as the foam exits the chiffon, the gas supply is stopped and the chiffon is closed. The nitrogen gas concentration in the container remains at 99%.



Revolutionary new stunning method launched on the EU market

Celle, December 22, 2016, by Harm Kiezebrink

Revolutionary new technique

After 10 years of research & development a revolutionary new stunning technique is introduced. Based on the principles of animal welfare as described in the Terrestrial Animal Health Code of the International Standards of OiE: The Anoxia technique – stunning and killing animals by placing them under atmospheric conditions in an environment without oxygen. The solution is not only simple and safe and cost-efficient; it is also not physically demanding to the farmer and his employees.

Animal welfare

The principle guarantees that the animal(s) are placed in an environment with pure nitrogen, once the high expansion foam, filled with 100% nitrogen, replaces the atmospheric air inside the container. From that moment on, the animal inhales pure nitrogen, an atmospheric gas that all living species are used to and that can be inhaled without any physical reactions because atmospheric air contains 78% nitrogen that is inhaled by every breath.

Simple technique

The newly developed and patented technique is simple. All it needs is a soap dispenser connected to a water tap; a soap concentration; a bottle of pure nitrogen including a regulator; a standard waste 240/340/370 liter wheelie-bin container; and the Anoxia lit that closes and seals of the container. Inside the container, a high expansion foam generator is placed, connected to the water/soap and nitrogen through flexible tubes, connected to the inside of the lid. A chiffon is added to the lid, in order to allow atmospheric air to escape the container when it is filled with foam.

Standard Operating Procedure

According to the Standard Operating Procedure, the water/soap and the nitrogen tubes are connected to the electrical valves on outside of the Anoxia lid. Then the animal(s) are placed in the bin, next to the foam generator. The lid is closed and the foam production is started.

Stunned within 30 seconds

After 30 seconds, the container is filled completely with foam. At the moment that the foam is placed in the container via the chiffon, the foam production is stopped and the chiffon is sealed off. Throughout the foam production process the animals remain calm. The high concentration of nitrogen replaces the oxygen in the blood and via the longs; nitrogen is transported to the organs instead of oxygen. The first organ that reacts is the brain that immediately shuts of consciousness.

Body reactions

The contractions of the muscles start after the brain is no longer able to control the movements of the muscles and is not a sign of stress, like with traditional gas stunning methods, where oxygen is gradually replaced with gasses like CO2 or Argon.
Therefore the Anoxia technique is the revolutionary alternative for existing stunning methods that are based on the use of CO2, electrocution, neck dislocation, captive-bolt, as well as killing methods like de-bleeding and maceration.

Anoxia applications

Several applications based on the Anoxia principle are now introduced for:
1. Stunning and sick and cripple killing piglets less than 5 kg
2. Stunning and killing of sick or cripple poultry (especially poultry > 3kg) who need to be killed on the farm by the staff for welfare purposes (avoiding unnecessary stress or pain)
3. Stunning and killing poultry that arrives on the slaughterhouse but that are unfit to be slaughtered (due to injuries occurred during transportation – providing signs of possible illness etc.)
4. Stunning and killing of male pullets at the hatchery
5. Stunning and killing of half-hatched chickens and embryos in partly-hatched eggs, before destruction
6. Stunning and killing parent stock poultry
7. Killing of animals that has been stunned (captive bolt – blow-on-the-head method, etc.) replacing killing by de-bleeding
8. Culling of ex-layers
9. Culling of poultry for disease control purposes

Sales started December 2016

The first application that’s introduced on market in Germany, Holland, Sweden and Denmark can be applied for Stunning and killing piglets less than 5 kg; – poultry > 3kg (turkey and parent stock); and embryos in partly-hatched eggs.

More info

For more detailed information on the Anoxia technique, please visit www.Anoxia.EU, or send your request for information to the N2GF team at and one of our consultants will come back to you as soon as possible.


Fear of African Swine Fever triggers biosecurity step up

Fear of African Swine Fever triggers biosecurity step up

ASF is considered a major threat to Danish pig producers, largely due to its presence in locations of export and its highly contagious nature. With the industry continuously under strain to make sure extensive measures are in place to safeguard the country from the disease.

Danish prevention plan

Soren Sondergaard, vice-chairman, of SEGES Pig Research Centre, said that ASF prevention utilised a massive amount of the annual budget but was necessary as an outbreak could cost the sector billions of kroner.
New regulations have been implemented to mitigate the risk, including new regimes which call for trucks to be thoroughly cleaned and held in a restricted area for a certain amount of time between transportation.

Mr Sondergaard said: “We are spending between 15-18 million Danish krone a year on cleaning the trucks, and have hired trained staff to do so, minimising the pressure on the drivers. If trucks are transporting to regions where ASF has been recorded, the vehicle must be cleaned and then left for seven days before returning to Denmark. We are working very hard to prevent an outbreak as it would cause devastation to our industry and economy as a whole.”
In the event of an ASF spread, parts of Denmark would be closed off with immediate effect, in order to ensure the flow of production could still continue in other areas.

As the virus is a noted problem in countries with vast numbers of wild pigs, Mr Sondergaard suggested that culling regimes could be another option to consider, as well as changing the drop off points where live animals are exchanged.
He said: “In risk areas such as Poland, it would be ideal to transport animals to Russia and then arrange collection so our trucks do not have to drive on the infected land. However, this would be expensive and so more safeguarding action needs to be developed.”


Dossier Piglets: German TV Report creats pressure regarding killing piglets on farms

Killing piglets on the farm remains a hot issue in Europe, demanding new methods. On January 12, 2016, the program of ARD Report (German National TV) broadcasted second program on the current method of killing piglets on the farm.

This program was the follow-up of the first Report program, published in June 2015, showing the embarrassed German Agricultural Minister. He explained that after the first Report program, the German politic forced the responsible German veterinary authorities to develop new techniques to introduce new methods that prevent unnecessary stress or pain during the stunning and killing , but according to this new footage, nothing has changed: the animals are still stunned by brute force and there is no control if the piglets are stunned before their throats are cut.

To change this situation, a team of specialists of the Friedrich Loeffler Institute in Celle/Germany, AVT Applied Veterinary Technologies – Innovation & Services (Germany) and Anoxia Europe (Holland) are working on legalizing the Anoxia method for this purpose.


Why is animal cruelty in February 2014 still front-page news in South Korea?

Unbelievable but true: South Korea still thinks that there’s no other solution than dispose infected poultry by dumping them in deep holes and burry the chickens alive without stunning or culling them first. Yesterday it was in the Korean news that Korea still uses the method of mass burial of chickens. Despite that this is absolutely unnecessary. 10 years ago, I started to develop the Anoxia method, a culling method that is cheap and 100% effective, without unnecessary human intervention and without any unnecessary stress or pain for the animal. The technique has been tested and approved and is today the most welfare friendly culling technique available. It is since 2013 on the market and commercially available.

See the following clip:

See the article published in 2011:


Korea discovers first CSF outbreak in four years

Pig Progress Dec 2, 2013. South Korea’s first outbreak of Classical Swine Fever (CSF) in four years has led to the culling of a herd of 300 pigs, reports the Organization of Animal Health (OIE). The previous outbreak dated from April 2009, the OIE states. This time the outbreak was confirmed at a rearing farm in Siran-dong, in the province Gyeongsangnam-do, on the south coast of the Korean peninsula. The infection was discovered on November 27 – one day later the OIE was informed. In total, four out of 300 pigs were found infected and as a result, all pigs were destroyed.The location of the outbreak can be seen on the interactive map included in the OIE report.


Fewer diseases through elimination: Euthanasia of sick and crippled pigs on the farm still a hot issue

For almost eight years, there is discussion in the Netherlands on the subject euthanasia of sick and cripple pigs on the farm. This article, published by Marleen Sleuwen in 2006 in the journal De Boerderij experts advise on this controversial subject, even today. Marleen was awarded for her contribution to create openings to discuss on farm euthanasia.


Euthanaseren van verzwakte varkens nog steeds een taboe

Al bijna 8 jaar wordt er in Nederland gediscussieerd over het vroegtijdig afscheid nemen van zieke varkens door middel van Euthanasie. In het artikel van Marleen van Sleuwen uit 2006, gepubliceerd in het vakblad De Boerderij adviseren deskundigen om ook op gewone bedrijven vaker kwakkeldieren te laten doden. Marleen werd indertijd beloond met journalistieke prijs voor de moet om dit onderwerp op de kaart te zetten.

Ondanks dat de EU tegenwoordig aan de lidstaten meer ruimte biedt om met het toestaan van alternatieven voor het gebruik van T61, toegediend door een dierenarts, blijkt dat in Nederland alleen het schietmasker gebruikt mag worden voor het verdoven van varkens.

De uiteindelijke dood van het dier moet vervolgens gebeuren door het toepassen van pithing. Een term die bewust niet in het Nederlands vertaald wordt. Volgens de definitie in art.2 van Verordening EU 1099/2009 betekent pithing: beschadiging van het weefsel van het centrale zenuwstelsel en het ruggenmerg met een lang en staafvormig, in de schedelholte ingebracht instrument. Het doden van biggen op het bedrijf zonder de inzet van een dierenarts (T61) is onmogelijk geworden omdat er voor biggen geen schietmasker in dit formaat bestaat.

De huidige Nederlandse wetgeving heeft de EU verordening beperkt tot het gebruik van T61 en verdoven met een schietmasker, gevolgd door het doden door middel van Pithing. Dit blijft zo totdat de nieuwe Wet houders van dieren wordt aangenomen in de eerste kamer. Persoonlijk vind ik dat van geen enkele boer kan en mag verwachten dat hij deze handeling uitvoert.

Ondanks de werkgroep die zich blijkens het artikel van Marleen van Sleuwen in 2006 over dit probleem boog en ondanks de Taskforce die Nederland in november 2012 naar dit probleem laat kijken lijkt dit dilemma nog steeds onoplosbaar. Totdat de wet Houders van Dieren wordt aangenomen bestaat er geren alternatief voor het inhuren van de dierenarts. Het euthanaseren van elk kwakkelvarken en elke zieke of verzwakte big wordt ongewild maar genadeloos gedegradeerd tot een kostenpost voor de boer.


June 14 & 15 2013: Open innovation days at Swine Innovation Center VIC Sterksel, Holland

Swine Innovation Center (VIC) Sterksel (as part of WUR University of Wageningen, Holland) is the multifunctional research center for modern, innovative and sustainable pig farming. The research covers all aspects of pig production, including nutrition, welfare, health, issues, housing and minerals management.

VIC Sterksel organizes every year Open Innovation days to present the latest technologies related to pig farming. In the last edition of the open innovation days, more than 2.500 visitors cam to see the latest developments, and also this year, it promises to be quit a buzzy event.

During this years version of the Open Innovation Days you can visit more than 50 innovations by Sterksel that the Partnership “Innovators of pig and pork chain” have been developed. During the day itself you get all the information about the systems and what they mean for the pig sector. Business people, researchers, pig farmers and students are able to expand their network because this event offers the ultimate opportunity to discuss the latest developments. The open days are available for everyone who is interested.


Humane Euthanising Using Nitrogen Foam

January 3, 2013: The Pig Site: THE NETHERLANDS – The most humane method to euthanize animals that are in severe pain or suffer severely seems to be the use of nitrogen gas foam. By this method the animals will be unconscious within a short time through an abundance of nitrogen. The animals die in a short time, without regaining consciousness. This novel method will be extensively tested at the Swine Research Centre of Wageningen University, the Netherlands.

Read more: