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What the CPRC is and what it does


April 4, 2008
By CPRC

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This article is the first of what will be a regular feature in Canadian
Poultry magazine – a feature that will provide updates on activities of
the Canadian Poultry Research Council (CPRC).  These updates will be
presented as a quick reference.  Please feel free to contact us if you
ever need more information.  As an introduction, here is some
background on what the CPRC is and what it does:

This article is the first of what will be a regular feature in Canadian Poultry magazine – a feature that will provide updates on activities of the Canadian Poultry Research Council (CPRC).  These updates will be presented as a quick reference.  Please feel free to contact us if you ever need more information.  As an introduction, here is some background on what the CPRC is and what it does:

The CPRC was formed in 2001 following an in-depth study of Canada’s need and capacity for poultry-related research. The study was led by Dr. Roger Buckland of McGill University and sponsored by the Canadian Agri-Food Research Council and the Canada Branch of the World’s Poultry Science Association – it documented a large decline in the number of poultry scientists in Canada (especially those working in government laboratories) and identified a need for a national body to co-ordinate poultry research, education and technology transfer.

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WHO WE ARE
In response to the study, the national poultry agencies formed the CPRC – its founding members are the Chicken Farmers of Canada, Canadian Egg Marketing Agency, Canadian Turkey Marketing Agency, Canadian Hatching Egg Producers and the Canadian Poultry and Egg Processors Council.

Our mission:
CPRC’s mission is to address its members’ needs through dynamic leadership in the creation and implementation of programs for poultry research, which may also include societal concerns. 

This mission focuses on: the co-ordination and enhancement of a more efficient Canadian poultry research effort, securing additional and matching funding, facilitating the establishment of national poultry research priorities.

SUPPORTING RESEARCH
The CPRC has committed over $1 million to national research programs consistent with agreed priorities. These priorities are set during regular national workshops among representatives of industry, government and academe.  Provisions have also been made to support research outside these priority areas, so long as it addresses an acute issue, relates to a significant scientific opportunity, and benefits the Canadian poultry sector.

The CPRC works to maximize every industry dollar spent on research.  We work closely with several government organizations (notably the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada) that provide matching research funding – so far, funds from these and other sources have matched the CPRC’s industry dollars 3.8 to 1.

A complete list of CPRC-supported projects is posted on our website. Results are posted when they become available and will be highlighted in future issues of Canadian Poultry. To date, the CPRC is supporting research projects in four priority areas:

Avian gut microbiology: The first projects funded under this program are nearing completion and have produced many interesting insights into the dynamics of gut microbes in the presence or absence of antibiotics and other feed additives. Results are being shared among industry stakeholders in an effort to improve the understanding of the physiological impact of antibiotics and what the repercussions of reducing their use might be, for both our poultry and the industry as a whole.

Environmental issues: Projects are underway dealing with a wide array of environmental issues ranging from land incorporation of poultry manure, to calcium and phosphorus flow in layers, to workplace exposures to pollutants, to environmental contamination from veterinary pharmaceuticals. Results from many of these projects are in, with the rest expected soon. The CPRC is currently calling for additional grant proposals to expand this important program.

Food safety and poultry health:
To date four projects have been funded within this program area. Subjects covered are: immunization of broiler chickens against necrotic enteritis, immune responses to avian influenza virus in the chicken, development of RNA interference constructs against avian influenza virus, and novel multivalent vaccines for avian health.  Results are expected through 2008 and 2009.

Poultry welfare and behaviour:
Within this program area, four projects are underway covering the impact of ammonia on the welfare of laying hens: improving transport conditions for broilers, alternative methods of euthanizing turkeys, effects of lighting programs on leg weakness in broilers, and improving welfare for beak trimmed hens.

Poultry welfare cluster for Canada: In addition to supporting research projects, the CPRC, in conjunction with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), has agreed to facilitate the development of a cluster of poultry welfare and behaviour expertise in Canada. The University of Guelph was chosen as the location for the cluster which, when fully implemented, will include an AAFC research scientist co-located at the University. This scientist will work alongside the many welfare and behaviour experts already there and will also play a co-ordinating role to raise mutual awareness among poultry researchers working in welfare, behaviour and related fields across Canada and beyond.

STAY TUNED . . .
The above is only a brief summary of CPRC’s main activities. Watch for regular updates in future issues. For more information contact Gord Speksnijder at (289) 251-2990 or e-mail: info@cp-rc.ca .


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