Projects will help increase animal health and reduce illness while boosting farm competitiveness
Researchers can move ahead with two swine health and welfare projects, thanks to the investment of up to $192,907 from the Canadian and Quebec governments.
Réseau Santé Beauce, an agronomy firm specializing in animal production, will receive $135,492 for its Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) pilot project. The firm hopes to abolish wild strains of PRRS across 38 swine premises in the Saint-Elzéar municipality in Quebec. First appearing in North America in 1987, PPRS has caused roughly $40 million in economic losses annually for the past twenty years.
“PRRS is a worldwide problem in the swine industry,” André Lamontagne, minister of agriculture, fisheries and food said in a Wednesday Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) release
. “In the municipality of Saint-Elzéar alone, it causes losses of $500,000 per year. Eradicating some strains of this disease will help our producers hold their own in a fiercely competitive global market.”
Centre de développement du porc du Québec Inc. will receive $57,415 for its project, which examines technology for needle-free injections in the hog industry. The team aims to lower the risk of accidental worker injuries while boosting animal comfort. The researchers also want to reduce the drawbacks affiliated with swine health procedures.
“This project will make it possible to find better solutions for the benefit of both animals and humans,” Lamontagne said in the release.
“Our pork already has an excellent reputation among consumers; we have to take steps to safeguard that status,” he added.
The funding will enable the industry to advance the national Swine Health Surveillance System, Katie Hawkins, director of communications, minister’s office, told Farms.com.
The funding will provide the swine industry with “consistent, high-level information on the health status of the swine population across the country, allowing for the early identification of new and emerging diseases before they become more widespread, and for action to be taken to mitigate the economic impacts of diseases in Canada,” she said.
The projects are part of the 2018-2025 Feeding Our World Biofood Policy, which aims to assist ag businesses in enhancing their productivity. The projects will help boost the competitiveness of farm businesses while diminishing animal illnesses.
Both investments are offered through the Programme de développement sectorial, under the Canada-Quebec Agreement on the Implementation of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.
Updated Dec. 19, 2018
RGtimeline/iStock/Getty Images Plus photo