Manitoba Beef Producers (MBP), a non-profit organization representing 8,000 ranchers and farmers, will lead the project and contribute nearly C$100,000 ($80,000) per year in funding and in-kind support. The province of Manitoba has the third-largest cow herd in Canada, according to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. Cattle and calf sales generate between C$400 million and C$600 million ($319 million and $479 million) in farm income annually.
The public-private partnership will conduct research on sustainable beef production over the next four years. The project includes a research program focused on beef and grassland management and plans to re-establish demonstration farms the share knowledge about grassland management, feed efficiency and herd health. Finally, an industry-led committee will coordinate research and extension activities.
“We are extremely pleased with the provincial and federal governments’ investment in the future of the beef and forage industry in Manitoba,” said Heinz Reimer, president, Manitoba Beef Producers. “We know the value of research that our universities do and we also see the value in applying these concepts on the farm and extending the knowledge to producers. The projects conducted under this initiative will be of value to producers, industry and the public, both here in Manitoba and beyond our borders.”
Other industry partners include the Manitoba Forage and Grassland Association and Ducks Unlimited Canada, which will donate the use of one of the demonstration farms near Brandon.