Research to improve the health and productivity of farmed animals in tropical climates has received a £4 million boost from the UK Government. The investment from DFID was announced by the Secretary of State for International Development, Penny Mordaunt, during a visit to the University of Edinburgh. It will support research in the Centre for Tropical Livestock Genetics and Health—a joint venture between the University of Edinburgh’s Roslin Institute, SRUC, ILRI, the latter of which has major research facilities in Kenya and Ethiopia.
Jimmy Smith, the director general of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), is in London today (5 Oct 2017), speaking at an Extinction and Livestock Conference organized by Compassion in World Farming and the World Wildlife Fund.
In sadness, the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) reports that Niall MacHugh, a long-term former scientist at ILRI and its predecessor, the International Laboratory for Research on Animal Diseases (ILRAD), died 21 Mar 2017.
The following opinion piece, by Jimmy Smith, director general of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), was first published in The Guardian on 16 Aug 2016, in response to an opinion piece published by environmental reporter George Monbiot in the same paper on 9 Aug 2016 (I’ve converted to veganism to reduce my impact on the living world).
In the lead up to the High-Level Meeting on Antimicrobial Resistance to be held in the margins of the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly, attended by heads of state and government at the UN’s New York City headquarters on 21 Sep 2016, scientists from ILRI and partner organizations have published a must-read article on the ‘One Health’ as well as ‘One World’ aspects of the rapid rise of antimicrobial resistance in pathogenic organisms.
Today and tomorrow (31 May–1 Jun 2016), Chatham House, the Livestock Global Alliance (LGA), the One Health Platform and other One Health partners are convening senior policymakers, academics, multilateral development agencies, business leaders and other private-sector stakeholders to discuss livestock’s role in poverty reduction, sustainable livestock production systems, innovations in livestock vaccines and diagnostics and the value of establishing national and regional One Health centres to provide advice on links among agriculture, sustainable livestock systems and human development.
Researchers at the Roslin Institute will be using funds from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to investigate how genetic information can improve the health and productivity of farmed animals in tropical climates, which is a proven approach to climate change mitigation and adaptation. The Centre for Tropical Livestock Genetics and Health is an alliance between the Institute at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) and the Africa-headquartered International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI). The partner institutions are making additional contributions with a value of £10 million to support the initiative over the next five years.