Renowned Alberta researcher honoured

Tim McAllister has been awarded the 2016 Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation.

McAllister, who grew up on a cow-calf operation near Innisfail, has gained international recognition for his work on antimicrobial resistance, beef cattle nutrition, silage science, greenhouse gas emissions, E. coli 0157:H7, and prion science. He is a principal research scientist at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Lethbridge Research and Development Centre, and also holds adjunct appointments at six universities in Canada, as well as universities in China and Ghana.

McAllister has conducted years of research to develop a safe means of composting specified risk materials, which is influencing new regulations for their disposal following the BSE crisis in 2003. His work on antibiotic-resistant bacteria in cattle is leading to the development of alternatives to antibiotics and he has led many projects related to optimizing nutrition for beef cattle. Most recently, he led a research project that found that the amount of greenhouse gas generated in producing one kilogram of Canadian beef has dropped by 15 per cent over the past three decades.

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McAllister is active in a number of international initiatives, including the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organizations Livestock Environmental Assessment and Performance (LEAP) Partnership. He has produced more than 585 peer-reviewed scientific papers, 60 reviews, and 1,050 abstracts, and has also trained more than 60 graduate students.

“His ongoing impact on animal agriculture is monumental,” said Bryan Thiessen, Beef Cattle Research Council chair and manager of Namaka Farms near Strathmore. “While maintaining a stellar scientific career, Dr. McAllister has never lost sight of the practical application of his research, and his willingness to transfer knowledge to beef producers, industry associations, and the general public never diminishes.”

The Canadian Beef Industry Award for Outstanding Research and Innovation, established in 2015, is presented annually by the Beef Cattle Research Council on behalf of Canada’s beef industry. Nominations for the 2017 award must be submitted to the research council by May 1 and will be presented at the 2017 Canadian Beef Industry Conference.

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