Egg Farmers of Alberta (EFA) is proud to launch our 2021 Research Calls for Proposals, building off the huge success of our inaugural call for proposals last year, which saw EFA invest more than $110,000 into four projects. Officially launched on January 26th, 2021, EFA is making up to $125,000 available for the 2021 Call for Proposals, for research projects that focus on the priority areas established by EFA’s Research Committee.
“Running a targeted call for proposals increases awareness of EFA research priorities, demonstrates industry commitment to research, and focuses resources on farmer-identified challenges and opportunities,” says EFA’s Manager, Programs and Research, Jenna Griffin.
EFA’s research priorities include the impact of lighting on the welfare of pullets and laying hens, management practices to reduce dust, factors impacting vaccine effectiveness, identifying genetic ‘best fits’ for various alternative housing systems, and characterizing the risks and attributes of Salmonella strains that are prevalent in Alberta. The complete list of research priorities and more detailed description of each priority can be found here.
“In the past we’ve been somewhat lucky when proposals have aligned with our priorities,” says Susan Schafers, an egg farmer and member of EFA’s Research Committee. “This new approach allows us to look at projects that are very specific to our provincial egg sector. These projects are relevant to the producers and farms that are here in Alberta, and will serve to progress our industry.”
As part of EFA’s 2021 Call for Proposals, a technology transfer requirement was implemented to help ensure Alberta egg farmers are capturing the benefits of the research investment. The 2021 Letter of Intent template includes a detailed plan for technology transfer that goes beyond scientific meetings and papers, with a requirement for farmer-specific communications.
“Effective transfer of knowledge from researchers to farmers is critical to realize value from the projects we invest in,” says Griffin. “We believe our new processes help facilitate improved information exchange to a farmer audience, which is a step in the right direction.”