Beef Cattle Research Council

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Beef Cattle Research Council - Research Priorities

Retrieved: December 19, 2018 - 10:01 AM

The beef industry has defined three core research objectives under which more specific priorities and research outcomes are established:

  1. To enhance industry competitiveness and reduce production costs, priority outcomes are to enhance feed and forage production, increase feed efficiency, and decrease the impact of animal health issues and production limiting diseases.
  2. To improve beef demand and quality, priority outcomes are to reduce food safety incidences, define quality and yield benchmarks supporting the Canadian Beef Advantage, and improve beef quality through primary production improvements and the development and application of technologies to optimize cutout values and beef demand.
  3. To improve public confidence in Canadian beef, outcomes are to improve food safety, strengthen the surveillance of antimicrobial use and resistance, develop effective antimicrobial alternatives, ensure animal care, demonstrate the safety and efficacy of new production technologies, improve environmental sustainability and measure the beef industry’s environmental benefits.

Within the core objectives, more specific priority areas are established:

  • Beef Quality
  • Food Safety
  • Animal Health and Welfare
  • Antimicrobial Use, Resistance and Alternatives
  • Feed Grains and Feed Efficiency
  • Forage and Grassland Productivity
  • Environmental Sustainability

For all priority areas, proposed research needs to give strong consideration to the following overarching aims:

  1. Improved communication, collaboration and understanding between researchers and industry, with research/industry collaborations increasing to account for 25% of research activities.
  2. Cost-benefit analysis completed to support recommendations and knowledge transfer from research projects that impact production profitability.
  3. Encouragement of interdisciplinary teams undertaking systems-based approaches integrating appropriate parts of the value chain.
  4. Investigate technologies with the potential to reduce labor and improve production efficiencies throughout the forage, cattle and beef production chain.
  5. Enhanced awareness and consideration of relevant international research and development activities to avoid duplication and identify opportunities for collaboration.

The BCRC establishes clearly defined research outcomes through a comprehensive stakeholder engagement process prior to each call for proposals. The BCRC's research objectives are aligned with those in the 2018-23 National Beef Research and Technology Transfer Strategy.

Outcome: Science-based information to inform the development of effective public communication and policy development regarding environmental goods and services provided by the beef industry; detailed outcomes include:

  • Develop cost-effective methods of reducing GHG emissions in forage-based diets.
  • Quantify factors impacting the rate and extent of C sequestration in tame and native pastures across Canada.
  • Quantify the impacts of native and tame pasture management on plant, animal, bird and insect biodiversity across Canada.
  • Quantify the impacts of native and tame pasture management on water use, cycles and watersheds across Canada.
  • Identify cost-effective cleaning technologies to reduce water use in beef packing and processing facilities.

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