Published on 02/17/99

New Complex Helps Put UGA in Animal, Dairy Science Elite

UGA Animal & Dairy Sciences building A new $18.5 million Animal and Dairy Science complex will make the University of Georgia an even better resource for Georgia farmers and consumers.

"It's a stepping stone for UGA to move into the elite," said Sam Hodge, a senior majoring in meats science, to the crowd of more than 400 who dedicated the facility Feb. 6.

Advantages for Georgia

Karen Holbrook, UGA Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost, said the complex offers a unique advantage in economic development on the UGA campus.

By allowing for "leading-edge research," she said, "this facility will serve as an incubator for companies. The community and the academy will now be able to work together within the same walls."

"The (ADS) department serves a livestock industry with $850 million in cash receipts. . ." ÿ
ÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿÿ Larry Benyshek

Larry Benyshek, animal and dairy science department head with the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, said, "We will be able to compete with anyone in the United States with these facilities."

Center Facts and Figures

The new complex includes a large animal research unit. It will allow for intensive research studies in physiology, nutrition and genetics.

It also has a meats science and technology center. There, scientists will conduct studies for product quality, consistency and safety.

A 150-seat auditorium will eventually be equipped as a distance learning classroom.

Faculty Focus

Benyshek said his faculty focuses on comprehensive programs dealing with the livestock that have an economic impact on Georgia farmers and consumers.

Scientists conduct research leading to new technology and transfer that technology and information statewide through on-campus classes and the adult education programs of the Extension Service.

"The department serves a livestock industry with $850 million in cash receipts from beef, dairy, hogs, sheep, horses and aquaculture," he said. "These farm cash receipts transfer into a multibillion-dollar agribusiness industry."

UGA ADS Programs

The UGA department's quantitative genetics program has gained national attention in beef cattle. The addition of a leading scientist working in the area of cloning has brought in new technology in reproductive biology and adds to the efforts developing mammalian transgenesis.

The beef and pork industries have identified product quality and consistency as major research areas. "The new meat science center will provide the facility to carry on a flourishing program in this area," Benyshek said.

Department Partnerships

"The department is becoming more and more active in the Georgia Research Alliance effort to promote science leading to economic development," he said.

The fourth floor of the new complex houses four companies in leased space. The companies were founded by faculty members on the UGA campus.

"This will become a model for the partnership between science and economic development," Benyshek said.

Megan Howard is a student writer with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences