I am pleased to announce the winning papers of the Animals 2021 Best Paper Awards. Nominations were chosen from all papers published between 1 January 2019 and 31 December 2019. After initial screening based on citation and download numbers, the Selection Committee reviewed a shortlist to produce the following winners of the Animals 2021 Best Paper Awards. We congratulate all of the following winners, listed in no particular order, of the Animals 2021 Best Paper Awards.
— Original Research Article Award—1
Effects of Dietary Betaine on Growth Performance, Digestive Function, Carcass Traits, and Meat Quality in Indigenous Yellow-Feathered Broilers under Long-Term Heat Stress
By Wenchao Liu et al.
Animals 2019, 9(8), 506, https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9080506
Outstanding features of this publication: Wenchao Liu and coauthors, in their paper “Effects of Dietary Betaine on Growth Performance, Digestive Function, Carcass Traits, and Meat Quality in Indigenous Yellow-Feathered Broilers under Long-Term Heat Stress”, demonstrate the problems faced by the broiler industry with climate change and some of the mechanisms by which betaine can help to alleviate these problems. These mechanisms have remained elusive for several years, even though betaine has been known to have beneficial effects. The paper describes the work that they conducted extremely well, with a clear summary for the public. It has already been cited 18 times and downloaded over 1000 times. The work illustrates how a multinational team from PR China and North Korea has made a major advance in poultry science with funding from sources made available to young and emerging scientific talent in this region.
— Original Research Article Award—2
The Ethics of Human–Animal Relationships and Public Discourse: A Case Study of Lions Bred for Their Bones
By Peter Coals et al.
Animals 2019, 9(2), 52; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9020052
Outstanding features of this publication: The manuscript, listed as a case study, eruditely illustrates how case studies can be used to develop ethical tools in a very novel way. Coming from a multinational team from the UK, South Africa and the USA, the work is novel in developing an ethical tool that can be expected to address the sensitive issues surrounding lions in Africa. It illustrates both the diversity of research published by Animals and the high quality of research that can be achieved by a top class multinational team without any external funding.
— Review Paper Award—1
The Potential Role of Insects as Feed: A Multi-Perspective Review
By Giovanni Sogari et al.
Animals 2019, 9(4), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9040119
Outstanding features of this publication: The review evaluates the possibilities provided by novel use of insects as animal feed. In the face of rapidly expanding farm animal populations to meet the growing demand for meat, new sources of animal feed are essential. The novelty of this approach commends itself, and the multinational team from Italy and the USA has demonstrated a depth of understanding of the topic, without external funding. The paper has already been cited 40 times and downloaded over 6000 times, demonstrating both the quality of the work and the keen interest in this topic.
These three outstanding papers are valuable contributions to Animals. On behalf of the Editorial Board, I would like to congratulate these three teams for their excellent work. In recognition of their accomplishments, each team will receive a certificate and CHF 500. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the authors of these exceptional papers for their contributions to Animals, and to thank the Animals Editorial Board for assisting me in the selection of these outstanding papers.
and the Animals Editorial Office