Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Lawrence MacAulay and Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart announced $6.3 million in funding for 24 livestock and forage-related research projects through Saskatchewan’s Agriculture Development Fund (ADF). In addition, the governments are committing $2 million over two years through ADF to the Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence (LFCE) at the University of Saskatchewan to support operations and ongoing research. ADF research aims to increase productivity and address issues relevant to Saskatchewan agriculture. Through ADF, farmers and ranchers benefit from research in areas such as new forage varieties, improved livestock feeding systems and management of animal diseases. This year’s projects include:
Researching new vaccine strategies to help prevent pink eye, which will help mitigate significant economic costs to Saskatchewan cattle producers as well as reduce the risk of antibiotic resistance;
New knowledge on integration of DNA paternity and genomic program information that will enable beef producers to make better breeding decisions; and
A study into the physiology behind forage-efficient beef cows and the development of better selection tools for the cow/calf industry.
Several industry groups provided additional funding for the projects. The Saskatchewan Cattlemen’s Association, the Saskatchewan Barley Development Commission, SaskMilk and the Saskatchewan Forage Development Commission committed $186,500.
ADF funding is part of the $26.8 million the Government of Saskatchewan committed to agriculture research in the 2017-18 provincial budget. Funding is provided under the federal-provincial-territorial initiative, Growing Forward 2. In July 2017, federal, provincial and territorial ministers of agriculture reached agreement in principle on the key elements of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a five-year $3 billion investment that will set a solid foundation for the future of Canada’s farmers and food processors, and continue to help them grow, innovate and prosper. The partnership, which will replace Growing Forward 2, is set to launch on April 1, 2018. Earlier this month, the governments announced $7.7 million for 30 crop-related research projects. For more information, including a complete list of all funded projects, please visit www.saskatchewan.ca and search “Agriculture Development Fund.”