Spring 2008 - Secretary's File

1st April

Secretary's File

Membership levels in the Branch continue to be at fairly critical levels. Over the past twenty years membership numbers have fallen from 350 to about 280 with a fairly sharp decline in the last two years. The reasons for this are well known, the continuing erosion of UK poultry research and education, growing economic pressures on the fewer but larger commercial organisations and the general trend for people to be too busy and too involved to want to join another society or read another journal. The sad truth is that, unless we all take whatever action we can to change attitudes, then numbers will continue to decline and the Branch will be in danger of becoming unviable and unheeded. The future lies totally in the hands of members so, once again, I plead with all members to be on the look-out for potential recruits and not to miss an opportunity to sell the benefits of WPSA membership to anyone you may meet in your day-to-day work.

Happily the following new members have recently joined the Branch:

Miss Zoe Brodie-James (Student) – Bournemouth University.
Mr Nicholas Gover (Student) – Royal Veterinary College.
Mr Jonathan Lester – Livingston, Edinburgh.
Dr Andy Morris – British United Turkeys.
Mr Daniel Palcu – South Croydon.
Dr Alexandre Peron – Danisco UK.
Mr Baitsi Podisi (Student) – Roslin Institute.
Mr Anthony Waller – Aviagen.
Dr Lin Wylie – KiotechAgil

But regrettably the following members have now left the Branch and we wish them well for the future:

Dr Ramone Alvarez – ex Roslin Institute.
Mr John Hartland – ex ADAS.
Mr David Martin – ex WPSJ Editor.

Dr Graham Wishart – ex University of Abertay.

Branch bids for WPC 2016
WPSA UK Branch Council has decided to bid to hold the 2016 World’s Poultry Congress in the UK and have selected Glasgow as their preferred venue. A formal bid document has been prepared in conjunction with Glasgow City Marketing Bureau and has been submitted for consideration by a WPSA Review Committee who will be visiting Glasgow on 19 – 21 March. Initially it was believed that there would be four bids but, Spain having dropped out, there are now only three: China, Singapore and the UK. After their site inspections the Review Committee will report their findings to the WPSA Board who will select a first and a second choice. The final choice will be made by a vote at the meeting of WPSA Council at the 2008 WPC in Brisbane on 3 July. Each Branch is entitled to send a number of Councillors to this meeting, depending on the membership of the Branch (the UK has seven seats) and so it is important that the UK Branch is fully represented and also lobbies throughout the world for support. Glasgow City Marketing Bureau will be in attendance at the Congress and will support the UK bid by way of a booth in the exhibition hall, a reception, handouts and other marketing materials.

Genesis Faraday / WPSA Summer Vacation Award
Enclosed with this Newsletter are details of the 2008 Summer Vacation Award which aims to encourage undergraduates into research in the field of farm animal genetics and genomics. This Award has been generously funded for a second year by Genesis Faraday to whom we are most grateful. The Genesis Faraday Partnership is a ‘not for profit company’ established in January 2003 and based at Roslin BioCentre. Its remit is to work to improve the co-ordination of the use of genetic and genomic technologies by the livestock breeding and animal health industries. Its core funding comes from the Scottish Government, DEFRA, BERR and the East of Scotland European Partnership. Also BBSRC has provided £1m in research funds for Studentships and Core Research. More information is available on its website www.genesis-faraday.org. The Award may be applied for by members of the Genesis Faraday Partnership which includes many commercial companies as well as most Research Institutes and Universities.
Please note that the closing date for applications is Friday 11 April 2008.

WPSA UK Branch Travel Awards
A further round of Travel Awards is announced on pages 5 and 6 of this Newsletter. These are open through the year to offer help to our UK based student members to support them in attending national or international meetings, conferences, short training courses etc. WPSA UK Branch Council has put aside up to £2000 for this purpose and applications should be sent on the form provided to the Secretary as opportunities arise.

Finally, a personal message:
As you know, I am retiring at the 2008 Annual General Meeting after eight happy and fulfilling years as WPSA UK Branch Secretary. This experience has been enormously rewarding: it has afforded me the opportunity to give something back to the poultry industry into which I was born nearly 67 years ago and which I have never left nor wanted to leave.
 I want to thank all those of you who have made these eight years such a pleasure for me, particularly three generations of Branch President and all the Councillors with whom I have had the privilege of working.
I wish the Branch great success for the future and my successor a smooth handover and an enjoyable term of office. 


WPSA UK Branch
Branch Annual Scientific Meeting and AGM
1 – 2 April 2008
The Spa Complex, Scarborough, North Yorkshire

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