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Ont. invests in swine and beef research

Ont. invests in swine and beef research

The provincial government is investing in construction and updates to research facilities in Elora

By Jackie Clark
Staff Writer 

The government of Ontario is investing in swine and beef research in Elora, a town just north of Guelph. 

A combined $18 million from the Ontario government and Ontario Pork is going toward a new swine research facility. 

Construction is now underway in Elora, and the facility “will use state-of-the-art technology to build Ontario’s capacity and expertise to support cutting-edge research that drives innovation in the swine sector and contributes to the sector’s competitiveness and productivity,” according to a Nov. 5 release from the government of Ontario. 

The new swine research centre was originally announced on July 2, 2019, the tender was issued in April 2021, and construction is expected to be completed in 2022. 

The provincial government is also investing $1.3 million in the existing Ontario Beef Research Centre in Elora, to support nutritional research. 

“The beef nutrition research investment supports the purchase of 96 Insentec feeders, a digitized precision feeding system that tracks and adjusts the nutrition for each individual cow as needed,” said the release. “Results from the research will produce healthier cattle and reduces waste, making beef farmers more competitive in the global marketplace.”

The Beef Research Centre in Elora is a collaboration between the Ontario government’s Agricultural Research Institute of Ontario (ARIO), the Beef Farmers of Ontario and the University of Guelph. Similarly, the Ontario Swine Research Centre, once completed, will be a partnership between ARIO, Ontario Pork, and University of Guelph. 

The two research stations, along with the Ontario Dairy Research Centre in Elora, are owned by ARIO, but managed by the University of Guelph through the Ontario Agri-Food Innovation Alliance. 

“Our government is making the critical investments necessary to support cutting-edge technologies, like Insentec feeders and a new swine research facility, because they fuel innovation and help Ontario livestock farmers be more competitive in the marketplace,” said Lisa Thompson, minister of agriculture, food and rural affairs. “By investing in agri-food research and supporting the livestock sector, our government is building Ontario to ensure the continued economic growth of the industry and rural Ontario.”

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