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Poultry is West Virginia’s largest agricultural commodity, but it faces challenges in terms of its environmental impact, particularly as it relates to water quality. The industry is increasingly aggressive in its attempts to minimize its potentially negative environmental effects, and its commitment to the issue led it to West Virginia University.
WVU’s Division of Animal and Nutritional Sciences is in the fourth year of a partnership with the Virginia Poultry Growers Cooperative, representing more than 100 turkey farms in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley that produce and market conventional, antibiotic-free, and organic birds.
The objective of the partnership is to jointly determine the priority research needs of the industry that can be addressed based on the facilities and expertise of WVU faculties. To aid in that, the West Virginia State Legislature funded the renovation of a state-of-the-art research facility at WVU’s Wardensville farm at a cost of roughly $125,000. The Cooperative also fully funds a graduate assistantship for a student in the Division.
Joe Moritz, associate professor of poultry science, describes the research funded by the partnership as “entirely applied in nature and directly helping turkey growers in the state and region.”
The Cooperative funds two major studies per year addressing what Moritz describes as “the most pressing problems they’re facing, and doing it in real time.”
Read the entire story on WVUToday.
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