Updates From the World of Livestock & Poultry Research


Ian Duncan Honored with Lifetime Achievement Award

Dubbed the "chicken whisperer," University of Guelph animal biosciences professor emeritus Ian Duncan has been named the recipient of the Frederic A. McGrand Lifetime Achievement Award from Humane Canada.

Maple Leaf Names New VP of Animal Care
Veterinarian Kathleen Long has been promoted to vice president of animal care at Maple Leaf - leading the company's animal care policies and programs for all livestock and poultry production and processing operations.
Making News

Call for Nominations for Beef Industry Award
May 1 is the deadline to nominate a researcher or scientist for the annual Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation. The award, established by the Beef Cattle Research Council in 2015, recognizes individuals who have advanced the competitiveness and sustainability of the Canadian beef industry.
LRIC Update
Job Posting

CEO TIm Nelson is leaving LRIC in September in pursuit of new opportunities.  The search for the next CEO has begun.

Details on open calls for research proposals are available online. Log into LRIC's research management system 

Any questions can be directed to

Coming Events

May 1, 2019: Poultry Industry Council, Research Day, Stratford, ON,

May 8, 2019: University of Guelph, Campbell Centre for Animal Welfare, Annual Research Symposium, Guelph, ON

May 9, 2019: University of Guelph Swine Research Day, Guelph, ON,

May 15 - 16, 2019: Animal Nutrition Conference of Canada, Niagara Falls, ON,

May 29, 2019: Poultry Industry Council, Human Resources Day, Guelph, ON

June 3 - 4, 2019: Canadian Meat Council Annual Meeting and Conference, Niagara Falls, ON

June 17 - 19, 2019: Ontario Small Ruminant Veterinary Conference, Guelph, ON,

June 18, 2019: LRIC Annual Meeting, Campbellville, ON

June 19 - 20, 2019: Ontario Pork Congress, Stratford, ON, 

Oct 5 - 9, 2019: Anuga 2019 - Taste the Future, Cologne, Germany,

Oct 8 - 11, 2019: Process Expo, Chicago, IL,

October 24 - 25th, 2019: Ontario Sheep Farmers, AGM and Conference, Allison, ON,

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Research Snapshots 

Antimicrobial use: AGPs Impact on the Gut Could Offer Insights into Human Obesity
Researchers are looking at the effect of antibiotic growth promoters (AGP) on intestinal microbiota in food animals, as a novel way to identify obesity-specific microbes in humans. Researchers hope to build on the more than 50 years of observation of the growth-promoting effect of AGPs on food animal production, to understand the relationship between gut microbiota and human obesity.

Alternative Protein: Assessing the Sustainability of Insect Production
A research team from the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland studied the sustainability of old and new protein sources for animal feed. The life cycle assessment project found that insect production is a sustainable way forward for the feed and food industry.
Poultry: Understanding How Flu Strains Jump Species
A new UK study is hoping to improve understanding of how to combat influenza strains. Researchers are looking to identify genes that are important in reducing infections by influenza A virus in pigs and chickens, and genes that limit the spread of the virus to people.
Poultry: Selecting for Good Feather Cover Related to Bird Welfare
Good feathering is important for a bird's health, welfare and productivity. And a new Dutch study investigated how genomics can be used to add traits to select robust birds with feather cover for a longer period. A well feathered bird is able to regulate its body temperature, and the feathers directly protect the bird's skin.
Full Article           
Swine: Getting Closer to an ASF Vaccine
Chinese researchers may be closer to producing a commercially viable vaccine for African swine fever (ASF). They have isolated a strain of the ASF virus that's been spreading across China - providing the opportunity to conduct basic research and possible answers to this devastating disease.

Swine: Studying the spread of ASF
A new Kansas State University study confirms that African swine fever (ASF) can be transmitted to pigs through contaminated feed and liquid. The study is the first of its kind, and the findings support the critical need for feed biosecurity in the swine industry.

Beef: Managing Pain Control in Older Castrated Calves
An Alberta research team found that pain medication helps two-month-old calves feel better and return to normal soon after branding and/or castration. This study follows up on their previous work that showed calves castrated at one week of age show fewer signs of pain and heal faster than calves castrated at two months of age. Using cost-effective and practical methods to reduce pain and stress will also support consumer confidence in Canadian beef.
Beef: Mob Grazing Provides Sustainable Pasture Management
Intensive grazing makes efficient use of pasture and encourages wild species habitat. An Ontario couple is being recognized for their modified mob grazing - moving cattle as many as three times a day to a narrow strip of fresh pasture. When the pasture is grazed, cattle are quickly moved to another grazing area, allowing for as many as five days for a paddock to rest between grazing.
Dairy: Incomplete Milking Benefits Early Lactation
A Canadian researcher has found incomplete milking during the first five days of lactation delivers positive health outcomes for the cow. Slowing down the influx of milk production during this critical period allows the animal's metabolism time to adapt, and results in a sharp drop in metabolic and immune disruptions.
Dairy: Measuring Performance by Corn Processing Method
Researchers from Iran and Russia studied the effects of different corn processing methods and corn with different levels of protein on dairy cow performance. They compared steam-flaked corn and finely ground corn with different levels of protein. While processing and protein levels may interact to affect nutrient digestibility, it didn't impact the feeding and chewing behavior of lactating cows.
Aquaculture: Protein that is poised to feed the future
The global aquaculture industry is growing at a rate of 6% per year and poised to be a major source of protein for a growing world population. The sector has multiple opportunities for growth that will depend on collaboration throughout the industry to ensure safe and sustainable development.
Whatever Next?!? 

Put the Seat Down When You're Done
A Dutch company has big plans for toilet training dairy cows. It's an innovative new device that attaches to the animal. Pressure is put on the nerve reflex that causes urination, catching urine before it hits the ground as a way to reduce ammonia spills.
A Little Fresh Donkey Cheese on Your Pasta?
An Italian food researcher has discovered that an enzyme in camel rennet coagulates donkey milk - opening the possibility for donkey cheese. Milk from donkeys and horses has not been an option for cheese production - until now - because no curd is formed with the use of common rennet.