Any quality rabbit meat

Research project: acorn rabbit Scientists demand: Eat more domestic rabbits!

Rabbits are already popular as pets. But as a main course? Long-eared ears have rarely landed on the plate so far. In statistics on meat consumption they are only listed under "other meat". Rabbit meat is particularly tasty and is rich in protein and vitamins. And that's just one of the reasons why scientists at the University of Rostock want to establish rabbit meat as a delicacy.

From acorn pig to acorn rabbit

But this is not just about any rabbit meat. Professor Petra Wolf from the Faculty of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of Rostock has developed a special idea: the "Mecklenburg Eichelkaninchen". Tests have shown that rabbit meat tastes particularly good when the animals are fed acorns.
The rabbit should then be reminiscent of "the unmistakable taste of Iberian pork". The domestic pig, which is widespread in Spain and Portugal, supplies the Iberian ham, which is known as a specialty - and is mainly fattened with acorns. What works with the acorn pigs should now also turn the rabbit into a gourmet specialty.

An internationally oriented research project on rabbit husbandry is already underway. The research is not so much into the taste, but more into the diet and health of the rabbits. The results of the research show, for example, that the animals feel particularly comfortable on a fine wooden surface and that they need more water than many breeders assume.
A realization for rabbit breeders: Feeding them with carrots is nowhere near enough. According to the study, the animals must definitely be given water as well.

Rabbit breeding as a useful pastime

And the Rostock rabbit researchers see another positive effect. They recommend keeping the animals as an interesting way to spend their free time. Especially for the "population in the country, but also for people who have stress at work, or for the unemployed and pensioners", rabbit keeping can be of great importance, according to the statement from the University of Rostock. The idea of ​​the "acorn rabbit" is also well received by professional rabbit breeders. Peter Kalugin from the regional association of rabbit breeders in Mecklenburg and Western Pomerania says: "High quality rabbit meat is one of the healthiest foods that can be offered".

"The best hams grow on the oaks."

The fact that pigs are increasingly being fed acorns again in Germany is also the result of scientific work. The "acorn mast" has long been considered unpopular, but has been rediscovered for several years. Up until 100 years ago, pasture in oak forests was commonplace for pigs. Fear that the pigs might damage the forest, however, over the years it was abandoned. The basis for the rediscovery is provided by a diploma thesis on the "historical keeping of domestic pigs in forests". However, nothing is known of a historical acorn feed for rabbits. But what is not, can still become.