APRIL Media Releases

September 24, 2018

APRIL first appointment of CEO and Chief Scientist

John Pluske has been appointed inaugural Chief Scientist and CEO of Australasian Pork Research Institute Limited (APRIL).
Professor Pluske from Murdoch University, Western Australia, will commit more than half his time to APRIL, while maintaining academic roles and duties at Murdoch University.
APRIL is an independent research entity continuing the collaborative approach to research and development of the very successful Cooperative Research Centre for High Integrity Australian Pork (Pork CRC), which is winding down to its June 30, 2019 conclusion.
APRIL actively partners with industry and educational institutionsto deliver research outcomes to the Australasian pork industry and commercial outcomes that generate financial returns for APRIL to support ongoing research, development and training.
APRIL invested $900,000 in 13 projects across programs covering resilience, cost and return on assets, in 2018/19, its inaugural funding year.
Dennis Mutton, APRIL Board Chairman, was delighted Professor Pluske agreed to take up the APRIL positions, with Murdoch University’s backing.
There are exciting research prospects ahead for the pork industry and John’s sound research background and international reputation augers well for meeting the high goals and KPI’s we’ve set for APRIL,” Mr Mutton said.
David Morrison, Murdoch University Deputy Vice Chancellor Research and Innovation, said the University was committed to agriculture and research.
“This opportunity is a win for the pork industry and enables Murdoch University to retain one of our prominent researchers, which is fantastic for our research capability and for our students,” Professor Morrison said.

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July 27, 2018

APRIL projects to progress pigs and pork

Australasian Pork Research Institute Limited (APRIL) research and development projects for 2018/19 to enhance the competiveness and sustainability of the Australasian pork industry have now been announced.
APRIL funded projects to a total value of more than $900,000.
All successful applicants have now been advised, with all providing an additional 20 to 25 per cent cash contribution to the APRIL funding.
APRIL’s three programs cover resilience, cost and return on assets.
Under resilience, it sought proposals on the more judicious use of antibiotics, antimicrobial resistance and novel assessment of animal welfare.
Under cost it sought proposals to help the Australian pork industry reduce reliance on more conventional feed ingredients and help insulate the industry from global grain and soybean markets.
APRIL’s target is to reduce average feed cost by 10 per cent and cost of production by 40 cents, based on ‘current’ ingredient prices.
The return on assets program covers new science to markedly enhance reproduction and progeny health and performance.
Roger Campbell, Interim CEO of APRIL, said the supported projects would provide new insights into antibiotic resistance and how this might be avoided, the role of enzymes and ingredients on the gut microbiome and some out of the box means of enhancing performance and reducing cost.
“I am optimistic about the projects being game changers and excited about them getting underway,” Dr Campbell said.

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June 20, 2018

Mutton announces Peacock appointment to pork body

Australasian Pork Research Institute Limited Chairman Dennis Mutton has announced the appointment of Dr Tony Peacock as an Independent Director.
CEO of the Canberra-based Cooperative Research Centres Association since 2010, Dr Peacock is a former Managing Director of the Pig Research and Development Corporation and was CEO of a successful CRC for a decade.
A reproductive scientist, he holds a Bachelor degree in agriculture and a PhD in veterinary science from the University of Sydney.
Welcoming Dr Peacock to APRIL’s June Board meeting in Adelaide, Mr Mutton said he would add a significant skill set to the Board.
“Tony’s leadership of the CRC Association, plus his board experience with start-ups, passionate advocacy for applied research and his track record in collaboration, science communication, research partnerships and effective innovation systems, make him a great fit,” Mr Mutton said.
Fellow APRIL Board members are Prof Robert van Barneveld, Ms Edwina Beveridge, Prof John Pluske, Mr Kenton Shaw and Mr Andrew Spencer.
APRIL, which replaces the Cooperative Research Centre for High Integrity Australian Pork (Pork CRC), is fully member based with a budget in 2018-19 approaching $3 million.
APRIL actively seeks new science and creative new ideas for its three programs, which cover resilience, cost and return on assets.
A recent first call by APRIL for research to enhance the competitiveness and sustainability of the Australasian pork industry resulted in 14 proposals being approved by the Board and funded to a value of almost one million dollars.
The successful proposals included 20% to 25% applicant cash contributions, giving a total cash budget for the first round of approximately $1.2 million.
APRIL Board has also approved $100,000 for education in 2018/19, to support an Industry Placement Program similar to that successfully initiated in Pork CRC, plus top up postgraduate scholarships and honours projects.

May 7, 2018

APRIL advises pork research approvals  

A first call by Australasian Pork Research Institute Limited (APRIL) for research to enhance the competiveness and sustainability of the Australasian pork industry has resulted in 14 proposals being funded to a value of almost one million dollars.
All successful proposals included a 20% to 25% cash contribution from applicants, giving a total cash budget for the first round of approximately $1.2 million.
At its April 23 meeting the APRIL Board also approved $100,000 for education in 2018/19, which will support an Industry Placement Program, similar to that successfully initiated in Pork CRC, plus top up postgraduate scholarships and honours projects. The first APRIL honours project has been approved at University of Melbourne.
According to APRIL Interim CEO, Roger Campbell, most R&D proposals were recommended with modification and all applicants have now been advised.
“The research portfolio contains very innovative proposals and provides APRIL with an exciting and positive start, with the first results expected within 12 to18 months,” Dr Campbell said.

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