Already a global leader in dairy expertise, the University of Guelph will intensify its research and innovations in the sector with the creation of a new dairy research centre.
More than 60 U of G researchers, including many internationally recognized experts, study a wide range of dairy subjects.
Now, Dairy at Guelph: The Centre for Dairy Research and Innovation will facilitate increased collaboration among those researchers, while increasing the University’s impact in the dairy sector and beyond, said Malcolm Campbell, vice-president (research).
“This centre will amplify collaboration, accelerate research and development, and elevate the University’s expertise, which will in turn escalate our researchers’ incredibly positive impacts on the dairy industry worldwide, including supporting sustainability and fuelling innovation for the industry,” he said.
“The formal establishment of the Centre for Dairy Research and Innovation will spur new discoveries and improve the transfer of knowledge to a vast array of stakeholders, while enhancing our global reputation as the generators of ideas and innovations that have real-world relevance and benefit.”
He said the centre is intended to further strengthen U of G research impacts and train the next generation of world-leading dairy researchers and innovators to meet industry needs.
For the past four years, Dairy at Guelph, an interdisciplinary network, has linked University researchers in population medicine, animal biosciences, human health and nutritional sciences, pathobiology, economics and other departments across campus.
They have studied various fields, including animal health and welfare, genetics and genomics, food science, food safety, business and management. The network has also built connections with producer organizations such as Dairy Farmers of Ontario and nutrition and animal health companies.
Establishing the centre underscores the strategic importance of dairy and agri-food research at the University for industry and government partners, said Prof. Stephen LeBlanc. A dairy cattle health expert in the Ontario Veterinary College, he headed the planning committee for the centre.
“One of the main things that led us to create Dairy at Guelph in the first place and then to elevate it to a formal research centre was the desire to gain greater recognition and promotion of our capacity and productivity in dairy research,” said LeBlanc.
“The second big piece is to catalyze collaborations across campus. We have people doing exceptional work all along the continuum in the farm-to-fork supply chain. We see an opportunity to elevate that work by helping faculty with an interest in dairy to find synergies and collaborate.”