December 2016

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Livestock Research Innovation Corporation: Ensuring value comes out of innovation

In its short history, LRIC has driven academic advancements in agricultural science in spectacular fashion. And its suite of services and connection to livestock producers makes it a perfect partner for Gentec. Read more here.

Gentec in China

Gentec's solid relationship with the China Agricultural University is beginning to pay off in collaboration and knowledge-sharing that will benefit producers in both countries. Read more here.


Gentec associate researcher and Director of Scientific and Industry Advancement at the Canadian Beef Breeds Council, John Crowley, was appointed adjunct professor at UAlberta's Dept of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science. Welcome, John!

Gentec in the media

At the Alberta Legislature
CEO of Genome Alberta David Bailey and Gentec-associated researcher John Basarab spoke at the Alberta legislature on November 23 to report on Gentec (among other) research to reduce methane emissions from the livestock sector. The visibility this issue is getting at the highest levels demonstrates the value to Canadians of genomics research to curb GHGs in accordance with provincial priorities on mitigating climate change.

Stability of research ranches assured
The Edmonton Journal reports that the province and UAlberta are partnering to administer two research ranches and assure that ongoing research continues to benefit Albertans. Gentec-associated researcher Edward Bork, who investigates the value of grazing livestock on rangeland, states that a long-term agreement was badly needed.

Grazing, carbon storage
Good news for producers: Edward Bork has found that grazing reduced the amount of carbon stored in surface vegetation and litter. Read the article here, including the enormous $$ values surrounding carbon storage and other good news.

LGC2016 Video: Integration of the beef industry in the UK

In this month’s Gentec Conference video, Mike Coffey of Scotland’s Rural College presents a trilogy of updates on the greater integration of the beef and dairy sector in the UK compared to North America.
  1. Mike looks at the cross-application of technology and its positive impacts within the UK's beef and dairy industries here.
  2. Mike expands on the cross-application of beef and dairy technology to look at optimizing "grid" traits. Managing grid traits can have a significant positive effect on profit and reduce environmental impact at the same time here.
  3. Mike examines ongoing research around the world driving feed efficiency in the beef and dairy herds, and the tools being used here.

Mexico welcomes Canadian beef

The 13-year ban on Canadian beef is over. It's still a shot in the arm for the industry even though the numbers could be higher. Read more here.

Gentec: Year in review

2016 was quite the year--on so many fronts! Gentec also had a momentous 12 months, pushing forward our agenda to make livestock profitable, sustainable--and a source of nutrition and food security for all. See the details here.

The value of beef

An article in the Canadian Cattlemen's Association magazine from previous newsletter contributor Brenda Schoepp raises compelling questions such as, since the nutitional value of been has been demonstrated, why are the nutritional values not on the packaging label?

Enviro news

California engages dairy to combat climate change
California has waged war on emission from vehicles, homes and industry to meet its strict emissions rules. Now it is targeting its dairy cows. Read how both sides are taking the news here.

Beef carbon
The first beef carbon in the world is registered on the Alberta Carbon Market Compliance Registry. In the link are all the plans, reports, verification and GHG assertions that support the project. Some of the protocols were developed by Karen Haugen-Kozyra, Tom Goddard, John Basarab, Erasmus Okine and others in 2007. Many are Gentec associates.

Tax on meat?

Livestock are responsible for 15% of human-produced greenhouse gas emissions. This is no big news any more. But a new study from the prestigious University of Oxford declares that taxing meat and animal byproducts would discourage demand and stave off climate change. Read the article here and a response to the study here (scroll down a bit).
Like the unpopular taxes on Canadian cigarettes, a tax on meat may open up a black market to address the question of affordable demand. Canadian producers are doing an excellent job of supplying quality meat products at a range of prices. Should this boat be rocked?

“Taxing a food that is full of nutrients is very bad public policy,” says Tom Lynch-Staunton, Issues Manager, Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. “Beef is important for proper growth and development in youth, and in seniors where these nutrients are essential to maintain health. Yes, cattle do produce methane, which the cattle industry is working hard to minimize through research. But they also provide valuable ecosystem services such as preserving native grasslands, which sequester large amounts of carbon, as well as promoting biodiversity, wildlife habitat, nutrient recycling, and water filtration.”

Rex Animal Health uses genomics to keep livestock healthy

Farmers can keep a digital record of their animals' health issues using Rex Animal Health’s platform. Read more about how it works and what its benefits might look like here.

Gentec supplies Xmas cheer

Gentec's Social Committee thanks everyone for their contributions which made this year's hamper another success.  The $465 raised put together a fantastic donation for a family of eight grateful people (the children were particularly excited about the toys). We are proud to be part of such a generous organization.

The lighter side

The US is exporting a very unusual commodity to support Russia's growing beef industry. Find out what that is here.

Events: see you there!

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