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$4M funding supports poultry research initiative


Guelph, ON – The Canadian Poultry Research Council (CPRC) has received funding of $4 million from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada to support a new Poultry Science Cluster along with 17 research projects.

Bruce Roberts, CPRC’s executive director, explains that the $4 million funding is being provided by AgriInnovation Program, which is part of Growing Forward 2, and the poultry industry, along with a small amount of funding from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food. The total cluster budget is $5.6 million over five years, of which 95% of the funds supports research with the balance for project management and knowledge transfer activities. The poultry sector was the recipient of funding under the last Growing Forward program and had a cluster of approximately $2 million. That cluster was a three-year program.

He adds that the research themes of the new cluster are:

1) Infectious diseases of poultry (4 projects);

2) Alternative animal health products (4 projects);

3) Poultry health and welfare (5 projects); and

4) Environmental stewardship (4 projects).

In total 17 projects are being supported. Three projects in theme 1 relate to vaccines, although some others in theme 2 are designed to improve the effectiveness of existing vaccines. Two of the vaccine projects are further research based on results of discoveries from the first cluster. They are being conducted by Dr. John Prescott, Ontario Veterinary College (OVC), University of Guelph and Dr. Shayan Sharif, OVC, U Guelph. The third project is being conducted by Dr. Joshua Gong, AAFC, Guelph, and Dr. Prescott is involved in that one as well.