The UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre is a modern dairy farm supporting education, research and technology transfer to the local community and beyond. Established in 1997, the Centre is located in the Fraser Valley at Agassiz BC, adjacent to BC’s highly developed dairy industry.
The UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre and its scientists provide educational and research opportunities for Canadian and international scientists and students from universities, colleges, schools, and industries as well as for the general public. Since 1998, more than 200 individuals from over 35 different countries have received training at the Centre while contributing to its rich international environment.
The Centre’s animal welfare researchers are recognized internationally for developing the scientific basis of good animal care as reported in Canada’s Code of Practice for the Care and Handling of Dairy Cattle. Our researchers are prolific publishers in leading international refereed science journals such as the Journal of Dairy Science.
Main Research Programs:
The Dairy Centre’s internationally recognized basic and applied research focuses on three main areas of study designed to support the dairy industry in BC and beyond.
- Animal behaviour and welfare
- Animal reproduction
- Resource recovery; energy, nutrients, bedding sand and water
During the past 13 years UBC has constructed and equipped five state-of-the-art dairy cattle research buildings.
- Main Building housing the lactating herd, milk parlor and manager’s office
- Feed Intake Research Facility
- Heifer Research Facility
- Westgen Calf Research Facility
- Laboratory Building containing BMO Conference Room, student offices, laboratories
- On-site Student Residence, currently under development
The Research Herd
The UBC Dairy Centre is operated both as a typical modern dairy farm and as an intensive dairy cattle research centre. Approximately 250 cows are milked daily. Milk and animal sales cover the cost of the Centre’s day-to-day farming operations, salaries, etc. The herd of approximately 500 animals is large enough to provide an adequate number of research animals to meet the Centre’s scientist’s increasing teaching and research requirements.
- More than 2,500 visitors including individuals from the general public, school and university classes, Canadian and international industry, academic and government groups tour the Centre each year
- We train high school work-study students and undergraduate, Masters and doctoral students,
- Facilitate BC Dairy Association Dairy Production Technician Apprenticeship Program,
- Instruct in University of the Fraser Valley’s dairy production classes as well as in animal health programs offered by Thompson Rivers University and Douglas College,
- Publish lay-articles about research findings in various trade journals such as Hoards Dairyman,
- Publish and circulate globally Research Reports summarizing application of UBC dairy research,
- Our faculty and students are in demand to present at industrial group meetings throughout North America and internationally.
- In September 2013, Nelson Dinn, Manager of UBC’s Dairy Education and Research Centre, was named one of five recipients of the UBC President’s Service Award for Excellence.
- Dr. Marina (Nina) von Keyserlingk was awarded the Elanco Award for Excellence in Dairy Science from the American Dairy Science Association’s (ADSA) in July 2013.
- Drs. von Keyserlingk and Weary recently received the 2013 Metacam 20 Bovine Welfare Award in recognition of their achievements in advancing the welfare of animals via leadership, public service, education, research/product development, and/or advocacy.
- Dr. Jim Thompson was presented the Western Canadian Dairy Seminar Award of Merit 2013 at the Western Canadian Dairy Seminar in Red Deer, Alberta in early March. Jim received the award for his on-going commitment to ensuring a strong dairy cattle education and research program in Western Canada.
- Dr. Jim Thompson received the 2013 Investment Agriculture Foundation of B.C Award of Excellence for Innovation in Agriculture and Agri-Food.