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FROM THE EDITOR: We Should Be Proud

We Should Be Proud


September 9, 2008
By Kristy Nudds


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Ever wonder how the Canadian poultry industry compares to other industries around the world? I recently had the opportunity to discover this in early July at the XXIII World’s Poultry Congress, in Brisbane, Australia.

Ever wonder how the Canadian poultry industry compares to other industries around the world?

I recently had the opportunity to discover this in early July at the XXIII World’s Poultry Congress, in Brisbane, Australia. This congress, held every four years in a different country, brings together poultry scientists, students and industry representatives from around the world to discuss research on various aspects of poultry production and emerging issues that could impact future production.

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Despite obvious differences in climate, politics, production systems, and consumer culture, the mandate in all countries is the same – to promote a sustainable industry, provide consumers with a safe product and ensure growers’ profitability.

Although each country and region offers its own unique challenges with respect to growing poultry, the fact that food has become a global entity means that no matter where poultry is grown, there are shared challenges.

One of the most talked about was the debate over food versus fuel. The struggle to find new energy sources and utilize feedstuffs is affecting both developed and developing countries and causing feed prices to soar. It’s also having an impact on feed quality, and the impact this will have on future production is yet to be determined.

The challenge doesn’t just lie with competition for energy, but also with supply.  The influence developing countries such as China and India – whose populations are becoming richer and thus the demand for meat, and the inputs it requires – is growing steadily.

Despite the enormous uncertainty on this subject, one thing that all parties could agree on is the fact that poultry, compared with other animal protein sources, is best poised to weather this storm. Due to increases in production efficiencies – the result of research – poultry will be the number one animal protein consumed throughout the world.

On the research scene, the Congress reaffirmed my belief that Canada is a leader. Canadian research was extremely well represented at the Congress, with more than six members of the Alberta Poultry Research Centre presenting, as well as several from the University of Saskatchewan, the University of British Columbia, the University of Guelph, and the Université de Montréal. Eight Canadian students also had the opportunity to present their research: budding poultry scientists in their own right.

The most important thing to note is not just the fact that Canadian research is prolific, but that it’s relevant to the needs of Canadian producers and producers around the world.

Our system of production (supply management) allows for funding of this type of research and as a contributor, I feel that producers and those involved with the marketing agencies should be proud of the accomplishments of these researchers and continue to support them – it’s their efforts that will see the Canadian industry through future challenges and continue making it a prosperous one.


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