After a busy few months of relocating to Armidale, acclimatising to the weather (good country air) and settling into my new role as Director of PoultryHub Australia, I would like to take this opportunity to welcome you to PHA. I would also like to share with you my thoughts and plans for the future and how we are going to build on the wonderful successes of the outgoing Poultry CRC.
However, before I do that I would like to acknowledge the foundation on which PHA has been built, the Poultry CRC has spent the last 14 years under the leadership of Professor Mingan Choct building a strong community of people with a love and interest for all things poultry. It is these relationships and networks that the Poultry CRC has fostered that will be crucial to the success of PHA going forward. While many of you will be sad to see the Poultry CRC come to an end (as I am), I would like to encourage you to celebrate its achievements and join with me in congratulating all involved. I would especially like to highlight the leadership of Professor Mingan Choct and announce that PHA would like to honour his achievements by sponsoring a speaker award every year in his name at APSS. Further, I would like to commend both Mr Lloyd Thompson and Mr Geoff Fairy for their invaluable input over the entire period of the Poultry CRC. In addition, I would like to acknowledge the work of all the support staff who have come and gone over the last 14 years of the Poultry CRC, you have all made valuable contributions.
The last few months have been busy setting up PoultryHub Australia on the UNE campus. Including employing Mrs Wendy Nimmo PHA’s newest team member. Wendy will be the first port of call for PHA enquiries and integral to getting all our systems in place. Welcome Wendy! During this time, we have also held two events; the opening of PHA and PoultryGrad 2017. Both events were well received providing a great opportunity for both industry, researchers and students to interact. I was excited by the enthusiasm and aspirations of many of the students that attended PoultryGrad 2017 and like the Poultry CRC, PHA has made a commitment to foster and enable young people to stay in the industry. PHA will focus on capacity building through the mentoring and coordination of poultry research students across Australia, through activities that connect students with industry. In addition, PHA will consider funding targeted internships that directly meet a specific capacity requirement within industry. Further, PHA will focus on programs and initiatives that target undergraduate students to join the poultry industry.
There will be no specific areas of research carved out for PHA to address. Instead, PHA will simply focus on challenges identified by the Industry Committee as priorities. It will require the best collaborative team to work together to come up with practical solutions quickly and effectively. This means, for projects of this nature to succeed, they will need at least two partners that offer complementary expertise and facilities. The first round of calls for research are due to be released in October, so keep an eye out.
An important aspect of PHA’s activities is to recognise that two-way communication between researchers and industry is essential to increase the adoption rate of research. This is because real solutions are much more likely to arise if researchers start with a clear understanding of the problems the poultry industry faces. PHA will promote adoption of new and existing research outputs by facilitating two-way communication between researchers and industry through training, workshops, demonstration trials and communication activities. So, if you have an idea that fits in this space I’d love to hear about it, drop me a line or give me a call and we can have a chat. PHA will continue to run events such as the Ideas Exchange conference to facilitate lasting interactions between researchers and industry. PHA IE 2017 has just been confirmed and will running from the 10th -12th October, more details to follow.
Looking forward to the continual growth and development of PHA and building on the relationships and interactions that have been paved by the Poultry CRC.
Associate Professor Tamsyn Crowley.