New insights to drive innovation for the next generation of pig farming are the focus of a new research collaboration announced by CBS America, a company leader in feed science platforms for livestock industries, that continues to expand internationally. and South Dakota State University (SDSU).
The new three-year alliance builds upon a previous five-year relationship of research teamwork and related student development support to explore new opportunities for producing quality pork sustainably and profitably. The main emphasis will be nutrition and feed technology interventions.
CBS America, the new U.S. focused division of CBS Inc., brings a wealth of technical and commercial expertise to the alliance. SDSU has a strong swine program, with research in the areas of nutrition and reproduction, swine courses and extension programming.
Incubator of novel insights, opportunities
“We are very pleased to continue our relationship with CBS,” said Dr. Crystal Levesque, associate professor of swine nutrition at SDSU. “It brings many advantages to our research and student training, both of which greatly increase our pace of innovation and transfer of knowledge, technology, and human capital to the industry.”
The relationship now has the potential to become even more closely collaborative with the recent launch of a new CBS America headquarters and distribution hub in Volga, South Dakota, a mere eight miles from the SDSU campus in Brookings where the university swine program in recent years has established its state-of-the-art $7.4 million SDSU Swine Education and Research Facility.
“As a science-driven company committed to innovation, our relationship with the world-class swine program at SDSU is highly valued,” said Rob Patterson, technical director of CBS. “We are looking forward to strong progress over the next three years that will support our mutual goal of helping to advance the swine industry with robust science and new solutions that make a difference at the farm level.”
He continued, “With our increased local presence including the new Volga facility and recent launch of CBS America, the opportunities to work together to benefit swine producers and their industry in South Dakota and more broadly across the U.S. have never been greater.”
Boosting focus on sows and piglets
Under the previous CBS and SDSU collaboration, there was a major focus on exploring novel opportunities to increase value from feedstuffs, including an emphasis on the grower-finish phase of production. This will expand in the next three-year phase with a stronger focus on sows and nursery pigs.
“We have seen a growing recognition of the primary importance of the sow as the foundation of pig production,” said Levesque. “The more we can support the sow, utilizing nutrition and feed technology approaches, the more we can optimize the value of the piglets she produces. Our industry has also learned a lot more about the importance of providing optimum support through these approaches to young animals, particularly in the first few weeks of life. This maximizes health, performance, efficiency and overall production value carrying through over all phases of production.”
The research focus will also include expanding the options for feedstuffs through feed technology that unlocks more value and benefits from feed, including byproducts that otherwise would not be useful as swine feed, she said. “We see a lot of potential value in finding new ways to add novel feedstuffs to the nutritional toolbox.”
The SDSU Swine Education and Research Facility consists of three buildings including a Sow Teaching and Intensive Research Complex, on-site wean-to-finish barn and an off-site wean-to-finish production barn.