Ontario Agriculture

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A recent dairy research event at the University of Guelph provided research updates to Dairy Farmers of Ontario board members and staff, as well as local dairy producers and industry partners.

“It is highly important and rewarding to share research results with the end users, such as dairy producers and dairy advisors,” says Dr. Todd Duffield, a professor in the Population Medicine Department at the Ontario Veterinary College. “If our dairy research results are to be adopted and truly utilized and applied in the field, they need to be shared with the dairy producers and dairy advisors of the province. The Dairy Research Communication and Extension event is an excellent forum to highlight our broad dairy research program to the Dairy Farmers of Ontario board members, executive and producer committee members.”

The day-long event highlighted ongoing UofG research in dairy food science, economics, production and health management, including: impact of environment and management on somatic cells counts; diagnostic accuracy of on-farm methods for detection of ketosis in dairy cattle; survey of management of reproduction on Canadian dairy farms; the effect of prepartum housing on metabolic and reproductive health in dairy cows; and incidence of hoof lesions in dairy cattle classified as high, average or low immune responders.

The research day wrapped up with Charlie Arnot, Center for Food Integrity, speaking about “Values Trust and Science - Building Trust in an Age of Radical Transparency.”

“The dairy industry in Ontario has been highly supportive of dairy research programs at the University of Guelph and this event is an opportunity to showcase the fruits of their support,” adds Duffield. The annual event as it exists now was first started in 2004 by Dr. Ken Leslie.

The dairy farmer organization funds the Dairy Farmers of Ontario (DFO) Chair in Dairy Cattle Health at the Ontario Veterinary College, as well as the DFO Professorship in Dairy Microbiology in the Ontario Agricultural College’s Department of Food Science. DFO has also contributed significantly to the new state-of-the-art Dairy Innovation Centre currently under construction adjacent to the Elora Research Station.


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