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February 5, 2024
Genomic innovation was at the heart of the research presented at the Banff Pork Seminar by the recipient of the 2024 George Foxcroft Lectureship in Swine Production Award, PigGen Canada. This is the first time the lectureship has gone to an organization instead of an individual.
"PigGen Canada is a very unique organization where genetics companies come together to focus on major issues that are too big to tackle alone. This award is the acknowledgement of their vision and support for significant research over the last decade," says Michael Dyck, Banff Pork Seminar Program co-chair.
PigGen Canada is a not-for-profit organization that is managed by a board of directors, with representatives from member swine genetics organizations. Incorporated in 2009, their primary objectives are to represent the Canadian swine genetics industry with one voice, and to develop strategies in swine genetic research that align with the priorities of the Canadian pork industry.
The George Foxcroft Lectureship Award is in honor of the late University of Alberta professor emeritus, George Foxcroft, a swine research pioneer and industry icon. Every year the award allows Banff Pork Seminar, in conjunction with the University of Alberta, to host speakers who are conducting relevant, high profile research that could improve production efficiency.
"PigGen truly met the criteria for the Award. 'Research to reality' was so important to George and the pre-competitive work PigGen supports exemplifies this," says Dyck.
The presentations by researchers Bob Kemp (Genesus), Tom Rathje (DNA Genetics), Egbert Knol (Topigs Norsvin) and Jack Dekkers (Iowa State University) covered: Genomic selection and its impact on current genetics; Individual SNP effects and applications in breeding; and Indicators and genetics of disease resilience. The related papers are available to conference attendees in the BPS proceedings.
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