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Jamaica seeks to improve its goat breeding industry based on Canada’s experiences with small ruminant genetics

Jamaica seeks to improve its goat breeding industry based on Canada’s experiences with small ruminant genetics

The Jamaica Small Ruminants Association hopes to adopt Canadian best practices in the Caribbean country.

Ottawa, November 10, 2016 (IICA). State-of-the-art genomics research in dairy goat, conducted by Trent University, as well as the experiences of the goat breeding sector in Ontario, are very valuable to Jamaican producers, who are analyzing the possibility of importing genetics from different goat breeds in Canada, with the aim of improving the national industry.

Visit to Grasshill farm, Bobcaygeon, ON.

The Delegations in Canada and Jamaica of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), with support from Rural Routes International, Grasshill Farm and the Canadian Livestock Genetics Association, are working together to strengthen the relationship between the two countries and promote future collaboration in the area of dairy goat genetics.

One of the main areas of interest is research conducted by Dr. Brad White, who has developed studies with different goat breeds to make them more resistant to diseases that limit production, such as scrapie.

Jamaica has shown great interest in current research focused on the identification of features such as tolerance to heat and resistance to other diseases. The possibility of introducing genetic resistance into Jamaican goat flocks is one of the incentives that motivates the country to take advantage of Canadian goat genetics.

During a recent visit to Canada, a delegation from Jamaica also had the opportunity to meet with representatives of provincial and federal governments with experience in the small ruminants sector, such as the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs of Ontario.

The president of the Jamaica Small Ruminants Association, Kenneth King, shared his intention to import genetics (semen and embryos) of different dairy goat breeds from Canada, such as Sannen and Nubian.

After attending the Royal Agriculture Winter Fair, King stated, “the experience was phenomenal. The quality of the animals on display was impressive. Without a doubt, this is one of the best exhibits we have been to in years.”

As a result of this meeting, producers in both countries hope to establish links that will benefit the goat breeding industry in both Jamaica and Canada.

More information: audia.barnett@iica.int

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