Highs and Lows of 2023 with Focus on the Alberta Poultry Community


PIP Innovation Showcase 2023 series launched in January 2023 with Dr. Luis Romero: Using Gene Expressions to understand Problems and Solutions of Poultry Production. In this webinar, Dr. Romero talks about the implications of new techniques in gene sequencing, gene expressions and which proteins and metabolites are being produced for what function. 

Canada wins Gold in the World Junior Hockey Championships.

People of Poultry: Read about the ALES Mini Internship Program, a hands-on agricultural experiential learning experience for university students spearheaded by Dr. Frank Robinson.   

The U of A Heritage Chicken Program opens again January 2023, now in its tenth season! The program was developed to support the rare breeds and genetic diversity of the heritage chicken flock housed at the university. Supporters collect eggs from the heritage hens every two weeks for nine months. 

RDAR (Results Driven Agriculture Research) Research Showcase: Feet in the Field: Eyes on the Stars took place January 10 2023 at the Renaissance Hotel in Edmonton, AB. Featuring presentations from Alberta’s leaders in agriculture research and knowledge mobilization and producers, including PIP’s own Lead, Dr. Val Carney. 

The  International Processing and Production Expo (IPPE) took place at the Georgia World Congress Centre, Georgia USA from January 24-26. 

Avian influenza continues to be a threatening presence at the start of 2023, although numbers are down from 2022 and the required CFIA processes for producers are more streamlined and efficient. 


The February Innovation Showcase presents Brenda Reimer: Bridging the Gap: Introduction to Knowledge Mobilization. In this presentation, Brenda Reimer talks about Knowledge Mobilization and how it can help move poultry research into practice.

The National Poultry Show (PIC) took place in the Western Fair District, Ontario, on February 8-9. 

People of Poultry: Launching a series of articles that highlight volunteers in the poultry community, read about Julia Neyedly: PRCSC President 2023 and the Poultry Research Center Student Club, an engaging group of agriculture students who seek opportunities to volunteer and connect with industry.

Jeff Brown joins the Alberta Chicken Producers as Executive Director, replacing Karen Kirkwood, effective February 21, 2023. The Board and Staff are forever grateful to Karen for her steadfast professional leadership during her 13 years with Alberta Chicken Producers. All the best to Jeff in this new role! 

The four Alberta feather boards, including Alberta Chicken Producers, Alberta Hatching Egg Producers, Alberta Turkey Producers and Egg Farmers of Alberta held their Annual General Meetings on February 28 in Red Deer, AB.


Innovation Showcase continues with Yi Edward Fan: Water-wash or Barn Cleaning with Disinfectant: Which is better for broiler performance and gut health? Hear the research results of Yi (Edward) Fan who compared the effect of different barn sanitation practices on broiler performance and gut health.

Jo Ann Chew wins the Aviagen Poultry Genetics Scholarship valued at $5,000. 

People of Poultry: A Conversation with Up and Coming Poultry Professional Jo Ann Chew. 

Learn about Jo Ann’s academic journey, her life priorities and how she values those around her every step of the way.

Small Flock Workshops are held in Airdrie (March 11) and Edmonton (March 25) as part of the Peavey Mart and Heritage Chicken Program educational outreach to backyard and small flock poultry keepers.  


April Innovation Showcase launches the new IS Roadshow with Mike Froese: Level-Up your biosecurity – On-Farm experiences from a layer farmer. Tour Mike’s farm as he shares his experiences with salmonella, fire and avian influenza and the resulting biosecurity practices that he has embraced. 

Level Up Your Biosecurity with Mike Froese was the most popular PIP video on YouTube with 265 views. 

The PIP Water App is released to Alberta Producers with a free, early access code. 

The Poultry Innovation Partnership (PIP) is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Val Carney to the position of RDAR Poultry Innovation Professor on April 13. Dr. Carney is now an Associate Professor at the University of Alberta where she will continue to lead the PIP organization with commitment to fostering continuous improvement of the Canadian poultry enterprise.

SPARK 3.0 took place in Red Deer on April 14. Led by facilitator John Knapp, participants were divided into groups and asked to discuss what success in the poultry industry would look like in ten years. This marks the beginning of a long journey to ultimately produce a new Research and Extension Strategy for the organization that is meaningful and beneficial to the poultry industry at all levels. 


May’s Innovation Showcase features Dr. Laura David: Calcium Digestibility in Poultry Feed Ingredients and the Requirement of Digestible Calcium for broilers. Dr. David talks about several Massey University studies that have been conducted to determine calcium digestibility in different feed ingredients. 

2023 Influential Women in Canadian Agriculture are named on May 2. Ana Badea, research scientist, barley breeding and genetics, AAFC, Della Karen Campbell, farm manager, Everdale, Kelly Daynard, executive director, Farm and Food Care Ontario. Judith Nyiraneza, research scientist, AAFC, Darby McGrath, VP, research and development, Vineland Research and Innovation Centre. Heather Wilson, research scientist, adjunct professor, University of Saskatchewan. Congratulations to all! 

PIP Water App is released to the Alberta poultry industry and public world-wide. The app is free to AB producers and PIP partners and $49 as a one-time charge for everyone else.  

The Georgia Precision Poultry Farming Conference takes place virtually on May 2. 

The Poultry Industry Council (PIC) Research Impacts Day takes place on May 17 in Elora, Ontario. 

The United States government has begun testing bird flu vaccines for poultry after a record outbreak, which has seen more than 58 million chickens, turkeys and other birds culled. To read the full article, click here.

People of Poultry: Natalie Diether and RDAR: Innovation and Collaboration. Natalie Diether explains how RDAR prioritizes research proposals, how projects find success through real-life outcomes and her perspective on current and future innovations in Alberta agriculture. 


Innovation Showcase: Rural Internet Solutions with Brenda Reimer. In this webinar, Brenda Reimer recounts her journey from dialup to Starlink, to share what worked and didn’t work and some farm-friendly solutions.

Climate News: June 6 – Due to smoke from wildfires in Canada, New York City in the United States is declared to have the worst air quality out of any city in the world.

Agri-Food Innovation Expo takes place at the Westerner Park, Red Deer, AB from June 6-8. 

RDAR Round-UP! The Telus Spark Science Centre in Calgary hosts the RDAR Round-UP on June 8. Attended by more than 250 people, speakers included  journalist and science communicator Niki Wilson, Jay Ingram, former co-host of Quirks and Quarks, Dalin Bullock, Dean of the School of Life Science and Business at Olds College in Alberta, and fifth generation rancher Sean McGrath of Ranching Systems Ltd.

Western Poultry Conference (WPC) 2023 took place on June 14, 2023 at the Westerner Park in Red Deer AB. WPC provides education and training opportunities for poultry farmers from all commodities in Alberta and across Western Canada. Topics included Mitigating the Risk of Avian Influenza, an Alberta Approach to Farm Mental Health, Exploring Regenerative Farm Technologies and more. Speakers included Dr. Jean Pierre Vaillancourt, Dr. Rebecca Purc-Stephenson, and Dr. Mohammad Afrouziyeh. 

PIC Poultry Health Day takes place on June 28 in Stratford, Ontario.


July Innovation Showcase continues with Chapter 2 of the IS Roadshow featuring Jeff Notenbomer: Rethinking Feed and Labour on Your Farm.  Tour the farm as Jeff discusses the challenges and benefits of everyday feeding, and making your own feed,  the importance of data collection for decision making and his approach to labor through shared responsibilities and strong sense of team.

People of Poultry: Dr. Doug Korver. Dr. Korver, PhD is retiring in a three year phasing out of his duties at the U of A after 26 years. Learn about his academic journey to the U of A, his passions for teaching, travel and birds and his plans for the future with ongoing research and an exciting new company.

Dr. Korver’s People of Poultry feature was the most popular post on PIP social media in 2023!

The Poultry Science Association announces its 2023 Awards. Dr. Martin Zuidhof is awarded the 2023 American Feed Industry Association Poultry Nutrition Research Award. This award is given to recognize distinctive work demonstrating sound research in poultry nutrition in the last 10 years.  

Dr. Doug Korver is elected Second Vice-President of the Poultry Science Association. 


Innovation Showcase: It’s about something up in the air: Measurement of Suspended Dust in Layer Facilities with Dr. Ran Zhao. Dr. Zhao talks about a research project that aimed to improve the measurement and understanding of suspended dust in layer facilities.

Risk Management Flock Talks: The Flock Talks took place in Edmonton (August 15) Calgary (August 16) and Lethbridge (August 17) offering solutions and ideas for mitigating on-farm risk through preventative actions such as immunization and biosecurity. Speakers included Dr. Teryn Girard and Dr. Hollyn Maloney from Prairie Livestock Veterinarians and Heather Watson from Farm Credit Canada. 

PIP Flock Talk Stats! 34 Producers attended, 41% had never attended a Flock Talk before, 100% would attend a similar event again! 

Alberta Open Farm Days take place on  August 19-20. Alberta Open Farms Days is an incubator for agri-tourism and rural sustainability, bringing Albertans together through educational and experiential agricultural-based initiatives. 

People of Poultry: Devin Dittmer- Homeroom Holsteins Program. Dittmer is bridging the gulf between urban kids and the real, hands-on world of agriculture through a program called Homeroom Holsteins, available to Alberta classroom kids from K – 12.

Climate News: On August 21, 68% of the Northwest Territories were forced to evacuate to other parts of the country due to wildfires.


Innovation Showcase series continues in September with Art Van Zanten: Artificial Intelligence and the Big Three, focusing on performance challenges that are affecting on-farm margins with focus on AI and Data Management as assistants to improve performance.

On September 4, Alberta Health Services declared an E. coli outbreak for six locations of a Calgary daycare and five additional sites.

Climate news: Yellowknife evacuation order was finally lifted on September 6, three weeks after being issued due to nearby and out-of-control wildfires. 

Get Set For Your Future: The third annual Get Set for Your Future, an industry and student mixer and networking event, took place on September 14.  Agriculture students connect face-to-face with industry experts in a speed-dating style format, providing introductions and networking experiences that can be career changing for students. 

People of Poultry: Get Set for Your Future: Details about the third annual PIP Student and Industry mixer and networking event which took place on September 14.   


October Innovation Showcase Roadshow: Manitoba Egg Farmers Learning and Research Center: A Vision for the Future. In this third video presentation, the PIP team visited the new Manitoba Egg Farmers Learning and Research Centre. This new, state-of-the-art facility will advance and enhance research on modern egg production techniques and technologies and showcase what modern egg farmers do every day for the benefit of the public.

People of Poultry Volunteer Profile: Dr. Nancy Fischer.  Nancy is a highly respected animal nutritionist with Country Junction Feeds whose work takes her all over Alberta and beyond, both as nutritionist and in-demand speaker for conferences and workshops. This profile goes deep into Fischer’s extensive volunteer work both for the poultry industry and her own community.  

The 46th Annual Poultry Science Industry Workshop takes place in Banff AB, on October 4-6. The workshop featured leading industry subject experts with presentations, discussion and networking opportunities. 


November Innovation Showcase features Dr. Greg Page: Vaccination as a Tool in the battle against Necrotic Enteritis. An exploration of nutritional and management-related approaches to reduce the risks of necrotic enteritis and benefits of vaccination as an innovative tool. 

AI Wrap Up November 2023: H5 avian influenza was detected in wild birds in Alberta (PDF, 403 KB) in mid-August 2023. Starting in mid-September, multiple cases were identified across Alberta, primarily in Canada geese. As in 2022, infected skunks also were detected. Related outbreaks were seen in domestic poultry.

Influential Women in Agriculture (IWCA) Summit takes place on November 7 in Hamilton, Ontario.

Poultry Innovations Conference (PIC) takes place on November 14-15 at the Grand Guelph Banquet and Event Center, Guelph, Ontario.

People of Poultry Volunteer Profile: Taresa Chieng. Heritage Chicken Program (HCP) Coordinator Teresa Chieng finds time to volunteer as educator, mentor and poultry industry champion while managing the HCP and completing her masters degree in poultry nutrition. 

SPARK! 4.0 The most recent meeting of minds, titled SPARK! 4.0 took place on November 2, 2023. The result of these discussions, focus groups and one-on-one interviews is the newly published PIP 2023-2028 Research & Extension Strategy. This document reflects the changing poultry industry goals, needs, and issues and will set the priorities for the coalition for the next five years. 


December Innovation Showcase: Dr. Felipe Silva: Controlling Coccidiosis with the use of vaccines on breeders and layers.  On this final webinar of 2023, Dr. Silva reviews the process of coccidiosis vaccination at the hatchery and shares farm practices targeted to full immunity development.

PIP 2023 Innovation Showcase Stats! 680 people registered for the Innovation Showcase webinars, 32% joined more than once, 15% joined 3 times or more, total of 744 webinar minutes, 104 questions were answered and the Innovation Showcase was responsible for 813 YouTube views (25% of YouTube views in the year.)

Editors in newsrooms across the country vote Canada’s record-setting wildfire season as The Canadian Press news story of the year. Inflation and the housing crisis round out the top three stories of the year.

HPAI Update: As of the end of 2023, there were 60 currently infected premises across Canada, with 354 previously infected and now released premises. The total estimated number of birds impacted across Canada was  10,977,200, with 1,858,000 in Alberta and 6,004,000 in British Columbia. 

2022/2023 Research Showcase: compiled by PIP team member Thania Moraes, the Research Showcase is a compilation of cutting edge research by Alberta researchers and scientists.

People of Poultry: Dr. Doug Inglis and Jenny Gusse. Two beloved champions of Alberta agriculture, science, education, and the environment were lost during a backcountry hiking trip that ended in tragedy on September 29, 2023. Read about the impact this exceptional couple had on family, students and community and how to contribute to the Doug Inglis and Jenny Gusse Memorial Fund

PIP 2023 Newsletter Stats! 1686 subscribers in 2023, and the newsletter was opened 7,674 times over the year.

PIP 2023 Social Media Stats! Growth in every social media platform. Facebook increased by 11.5%, Instagram 31.8%, LinkedIn 40.9%, and Twitter by 20.7%.  People reached by social media: 68,535. YouTube subscribers increased by 39.6%. Total views, 3.2K and hours of video watching, 354.              Total people reached by PIP: 91,508.

Click on the link to have access to our previous Tool of the Month and Research Articles. 

PIP wishes all in the poultry community a Happy New Year and all the best for 2024. 

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