Reinvigorating animal agricultural research is essential to sustainably address the global challenge of food security1. The global demand for food from animal agriculture is anticipated to nearly double by 2050. Increased demand is due, in part, to a predicted increase in world population from 7.2 billion to between 9 billion and 10 billion people in 2050. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) estimates that there will be a 73 percent increase in meat and egg consumption and a 58 percent increase in dairy consumption over 2011 levels worldwide by the year 2050. The increase in population puts additional pressure on the availability of land, water, and energy needed for animal and crop production. During this period, it is also anticipated that there will be significant growth in per capita animal-source food consumption related to increasing income and urbanization in developing
1 When using the term animal agriculture, the committee is referring to livestock, poultry and aquaculture in total. Livestock includes cattle, sheep, horses, goats, and other domestic animals ordinarily raised or used on the farm. Domesticated fowl are considered poultry and not livestock (29 CFR § 780.328). Aquaculture, also known as fish or shellfish farming, refers to the breeding, rearing, and harvesting of plants and animals in all types of water environments including ponds, rivers, lakes, and the ocean (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 2014. What is Aquaculture? Online. Available at http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/aquaculture/what_is_aquaculture.html. Accessed September 15, 2014).The committee uses the term animal sciences to refer to all disciplines currently contributing to animal food production systems. These disciplines are generally housed in departments focused on conventional animal sciences, animal husbandry, food sciences, dairy husbandry, poultry husbandry, veterinary science, veterinary medicine, and agricultural economics. As defined by the 1996 World Food Summit, food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. 1996. World Food Summit Plan of Action, Paragraph 1 in Rome Declaration on World Food Security. World Food Summit 13-17 November 1996, Rome, Italy. Online. Available at http://www.fao.org/docrep/003/w3613e/w3613e00.HTM. Accessed August 14, 2014).
countries. Global environmental challenges, including global climate change, and the growing threat of disease transmission to and from agricultural animals add further challenges to sustainably meeting the demand for animal agriculture in the year 2050. Even in a stable world, the animal agricultural research enterprise would be significantly challenged to help rectify the current unequal distribution of animal food and to address the need to integrate social science research to better understand and respond to changing consumer preferences. Further, there is a high likelihood of a major threat to animal agriculture that no one currently predicts and for which a vibrant animal research enterprise will be central to an effective response to ensure global food security. Without additional investment, the current global animal agricultural research will not meet the expected demand for animal food products in 2050.
Agricultural sustainability, a focus of this report, has been defined by the National Research Council as having four generally agreed-upon goals: satisfy human food, feed, and fiber needs and contribute to biofuel needs; enhance environmental quality and the resource base; sustain the economic viability of agriculture; and enhance the quality of life for farmers, farm workers, and society as a whole. Sustainability is best evaluated not as a particular end state, but rather as a process that moves agricultural systems along a trajectory toward greater sustainability on each of the four goals.
The field of animal agriculture faces numerous challenges in meeting global food security in the context of the three pillars of sustainability (environment, economy, and society). Environmental considerations for animal agriculture include global environmental change, land- and water-use constraints, and impacts on biodiversity, among others. Several economic considerations include meeting increased demand, trade issues, and production growth. Social considerations include animal welfare, equity (e.g., fair labor practices, including agricultural worker health and protection of vulnerable human populations and rural communities), corporate social responsibility, business ethics, the naturalness of food products, and the use of biotechnology in food production. Whatever the definition of sustainability and however it is applied to animal agriculture, a key to ensuring a sustainable food system is a holistic systems approach. These approaches have become more important as the planet’s resources necessary to sustain an increasing population are increasingly connected and are being further challenged by global environmental changes.
These challenges point to the need for more animal science research that improves integration in areas where these needs overlap, including research on food science, socioeconomics, and environmental sciences. A new roadmap for animal science research is needed that focuses on animal production in a way that informs and is informed by advances in biological sciences and by the broader socioeconomic and environmental conditions of the new century. Animal agriculture and animal protein production will substantially increase to meet demand from global population growth, but must do so in the context of sustainability.
Recognizing the gap between the animal agricultural research enterprise and the challenges related to global food security, an ad hoc committee of experts was convened to prepare a report to identify critical areas of research and development (R&D), technologies and resource needs for research in the field of animal agriculture, both nationally and internationally (see Appendix B). The committee was asked to assess global demand for products of animal origin in 2050 within the framework of ensuring global food security; evaluate how environmental changes and limited natural resources may impact the ability to sustainably meet future global demand for animal products in a wide variety of production systems in the United States and internationally; and identify factors that may impact the ability of the United States to sustainably meet demand for animal products, including the need for trained human capital, product safety and quality, effective communication, and adoption of new knowledge, information, and technologies. The committee was also tasked with identifying the needs for human capital development, technology transfer and information systems for emerging and evolving animal production systems in developing countries; identifying the resources needed to develop and disseminate this knowledge and these technologies; and describing the evolution of sustainable animal production systems relevant to production and production efficiency metrics in the United States and in developing countries.
The task given to the committee was based on three underlying assumptions, which the committee did not reexamine in depth. First, global animal protein consumption will continue to increase based on population growth and on increased per capita animal protein consumption. There is a wealth of literature to support this assumption. Second, restricted resources (e.g., water, land, energy, and capital) and global environmental change will drive complex agricultural decisions that affect research needs. If the natural system is defined as one that is unaffected by humans, then agriculture is inherently disruptive. Third, current and foreseeable rapid advances in basic biological sciences provide an unparalleled opportunity to maximize the yield of investments in animal science R&D. The task to the committee was to identify what research is needed to achieve the goal of providing adequate, safe, and affordable nutritious food to the global population, taking into account several critical issues that factor into this process, such as public understanding and values, food safety concerns, poverty, trade barriers, socioeconomic dynamics, and health and nutrition (Figure S-1). The committee operated under a fast-track approach that began in March 2014 and concluded with the submission of the revised report in December 2014. This approach constrained deliberations to those areas clearly within the boundaries of the task. The report points to many directions that can be expanded upon and advanced in future deliberations on the subject of animal agricultural research needs. The committee recognizes that it is not unusual for an NRC committee charged with evaluating research to find that the area has been relatively underfunded. Accordingly, the committee went out of its way to develop analyses that evaluated this contention, which are detailed in Chapter 5.
FIGURE S-1 Overview of inputs affecting animal agricultural needs.
SOURCE: Committee generated.
The committee engaged in a fast-track process that included meetings in March, May, July and September 2014. Data-gathering sessions that were open to the public were held during both the March and May meetings. The July meeting was a week-long intensive session, which included extensive reviews of relevant literature, deliberation, and drafting of report text; the September meeting was a closed writing session. During the March meeting, the committee heard from each of the study sponsors, including the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, the National Pork Board, Tyson Foods, Inc., the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association. It also heard from speakers from various nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), industry, and federal agencies providing their perspectives on the need for animal science research. Presenters at the May meeting represented academia, NGOs, and federal agencies, and addressed topics such as ethical considerations in animal science research, sustainable
aquaculture, funding equity for the field, and the impact of climate change on animal agriculture.
The committee reviewed and built upon a large body of written material on animal science issues, including literature that informed the committee on research needs for the field. The available data included other NRC reports, FAO reports, published research articles, and both U.S. and international governmental reports. The committee also reviewed many other documents related to USDA’s budget and functioning. The committee recognized that there are public organizations and literature advocating reduction in the amount of animal protein consumed with the rationale that this would improve our health and well-being and reduce the impact of these agricultural systems on the environment (e.g., a meatless Monday campaign has gained support from many governmental and nonprofit organizations). The committee does not, however, address these issues because it was specifically tasked with identifying research needs for animal agriculture in light of the projected global increase in human consumption of animal protein. The committee does note that as long as animal protein continues to be consumed, there is value to R&D that improves the efficiency of its production.
Finally, in considering the charge to discuss global issues in animal agriculture, the committee noted that there is marked variability among and within different countries in their animal agricultural practices and needs. These reflect a variety of factors including climate, soil characteristics, and cultural practices. It has been estimated that for billions of people, particularly in sub-Saharan Africa, South and Southeast Asia, and other developing countries, raising food animals fulfills a social need beyond the provision of food2. In the United States, there exists a wide range of agricultural systems that reflect both geographical and cultural factors related to the different groups of immigrants who settled in different parts of the country.
Many agrarian societies are being rapidly affected by globalization of food supplies and urbanization, which are trends that are anticipated to continue. Some countries, such as Brazil, have rapidly emerging
2 Herrero, M., D. Grace, J. Njuki, N. Johnson, D. Enahoro, S. Silvestri, and M. C. Rufino. 2013a. The roles of livestock in developing countries. Animal 7(S1):3-18. Herrero, M., P. Havlik, H. Valin, A. Notenbaert, M. C. Rufino, P. K. Thornton, M. Blummel, F. Weiss, D. Grace, and M. Obersteiner. 2013b. Biomass use, production, feed efficiencies and greenhouse gas emissions from global livestock systems. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 110(52):20888-20893.
economies characterized by great increases in agricultural productivity that match or exceed that of the United States or Europe. Accordingly, the traditional distinction between developed and developing countries is overly simplistic. In this report, the committee provides an overview of the extensive variability in animal agriculture among developed and developing countries and among individual countries. This provides a basis for discussion of research and general needs for human capital development, technology transfer, and information systems. The committee does not go into detail for each country or region beyond the United States, but notes that there is much overlap between research needs in the United States and those in developing countries.
Animal production and the science that informs it are confronted by an emerging and globally complex set of conditions in the 21st century that generate new challenges for sustainable animal production, which in turn requires rethinking about the overall nature of animal science. These challenges include, but are not limited to, growing demand for animal products by an increasingly affluent, global population approaching 10 billion people; the globalization of food systems that cross continents with consequences for individual countries and regional concerns about food security; the intensification of production systems in the context of societal and environmental impacts; the development and maintenance of sustainable animal production systems in the face of global environmental change; and the multiple decadal stagnation in research funding for animal production. As described throughout this report, a new roadmap for animal science research is required. The findings and recommendations3 described below will help to inform this new roadmap.
The breadth of the committee’s task led to many recommendations being developed. The committee twice deliberated on prioritization of these recommendations. Early in the process the committee chose a limited number of broad and high-level overarching recommendations,
3 Finding as used in the report is an actionable discovery, circumstance, revelation, issue, or fact drawn from evidence or analysis, and a recommendation is a proposal for action to be taken by leaders in government, NGOs, academia, and/or industry, as appropriate, to address one or more findings.
which were then refined in subsequent meetings and are described immediately below. At its last meeting, the committee chose its highest priorities from among all of the possible recommendations. These recommendations appear after the overarching recommendations and are specific to what the committee identified as key areas in animal agriculture in both the United States and globally. In addition to its recommendations, the committee identified complementary priorities for research, research support, and infrastructure, which can be found in Chapters 3-5.
Ideally, NRC committee recommendations should include an action statement specifying the agency or organization that should follow up. This works well if there is an individual sponsor with a single short-term task; however, the breadth of the tasks and the multiplicity of overlapping national and international public and private organizations involved in sponsoring or performing animal research limited the committee’s ability to specify action pathways. Sorting out responsibilities for moving ahead is part of the reason that the committee has recommended the development of a U.S. Animal Science Strategic Plan under the leadership of the USDA.
Two central issues have guided National Research Council and other reports regarding the setting of research agendas for animal agriculture in recent years: productivity and sustainability. The committee built on these reports and emphasized the importance of research to sustainably and efficiently increase animal agricultural productivity. The committee’s deliberations resulted in the following overarching recommendations:
- To achieve food security, research efforts should be improved through funding efforts that instill integration rather than independence of the individual components of the entire food chain. Success can only be achieved through strong, overarching, and inter- and transdisciplinary research collaborations involving both the public and private sectors. Animal science research should move toward a systems approach that emphasizes efficiency and quality of production to meet food security needs. The recently created Foundation for Food and Agricultural Research (FFAR) needs to incorporate holistic approaches to animal productivity and sustainability (Chapter 5).
- Continuing the research emphasis on improving animal productivity is necessary; however, concomitant research on the economic, environmental, and social sustainability nexuses of animal production systems should also be enhanced. Both public and private funding agencies should incorporate inter- and transdisciplinary approaches for research on animal productivity and sustainability (Chapters 3 and 5).
- There is a need to revitalize research infrastructure (human and physical resources), for example, through a series of strategic planning approaches, developing effective partnerships, and enhancing efficiency. In the United States, the committee recommends that USDA and the newly created FFAR spearhead the formation of a coalition to develop a U.S. Animal Science Strategic Plan or Roadmap for capacity building and infrastructure from 2014 to 2050. The coalition should be broad based and include representation from relevant federal agencies; colleges and universities that are involved in research, teaching, and outreach activities with food animals; NGOs; the private sector; and other relevant stakeholders. Areas of focus should include assessment of resource needs (human and physical infrastructure) to support the current and emerging animal science research enterprise; strategies to increase support for research, outreach, and instructional needs via formula funding, competitive funding, and public-private partnerships; curriculum development and delivery; evaluation of factors affecting hiring, retention, and diversity in the animal sciences; and mechanisms for research, priority setting to meet emerging, local, regional, national, and global needs (Chapter 5).
- Socioeconomic/cultural research is essential to guide and inform animal scientists and decision makers on appropriately useful and applicable animal science research as well as communication and engagement strategies to deal with these extensive challenges. Engagement of social scientists and researchers from other relevant disciplines should be a prerequisite as appropriate for integrated animal science research projects, such as National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Coordinated Agricultural Project grants, to secure funding and approval of such projects (Chapters 3 and 5).
- For research in sustainable intensification of animal agriculture to meet the challenge of future animal protein needs, it is necessary to effectively close the existing broad communication gap between the public, researchers, and the food industries. This will require
research to better understand the knowledge, opinions, and values of the public and food system stakeholders, as well as the development of effective and mutually respectful communication strategies that foster ongoing stakeholder engagement. A coalition representing universities, federal agencies, industry, and the public should be formed to focus on communications research with the goals of enhancing engagement, knowledge dissemination, stakeholder participation, and informed decision making. Communications programs within agriculture schools, or in collaboration with other university components, such as schools of public health, could conduct this type of research (Chapters 3 and 5).
- The United States should expand its involvement in research that assists in the development of internationally harmonized standards, guidelines, and regulations related to both the trade in animal products and protection of the consumers of those products (Chapter 4).
Many of the recommendations and priorities discussed in each of the chapters are based on a central theme of the need for strategic planning to meet the challenges of the increased animal agricultural demand that is projected through 2050. These recommendations and priorities include planning for research in the United States and in developing countries and reconsideration of education and training in animal agriculture in the United States, particularly at the university level. These strategic planning activities should be guided by the need for systems approaches that integrate the many scientific disciplines and governmental and nongovernmental stakeholders involved in achieving the goal of food security based on sustainable animal agriculture.
Recommendations for U.S. Animal Agriculture
The committee developed several recommendations that are of high priority for reinvigorating the field of animal agriculture in the United States.
In view of the anticipated continuing increased demand for animal protein, growth in U.S. research related to animal agricultural productivity is imperative. Animal protein products contribute over $43 billion annually to the U.S. agricultural trade balance. Animal agriculture accounts for 60 to 70 percent of the total agricultural economy. In the
past two decades, public funding, including formula funding and USDA Agricultural Research Service/National Institute of Food and Agriculture funding, of animal science research has been stagnant in terms of real dollars and has declined in relation to the research inflation rate. A 50 percent decline in the rate of increase in U.S. agricultural productivity is predicted if overall agricultural funding increases in normative dollars continue at the current rate, which is less than the expected rate of inflation of research costs. If funding does meet the rate of research cost inflation, however, a 73 percent increase in overall agricultural productivity between now and 2050 is projected and a 1 percent increase in inflation-adjusted spending is projected to lead to an 83 percent increase.
Despite documenting the clear economic and scientific value of animal science research in the United States, funding to support the infrastructure and capacity is evidently insufficient to meet the needs for animal food; U.S.-based research will be needed to address sustainability issues and to help developing countries sustainably increase their own animal protein production and/or needs. Additionally, animal science research and practices in the United States are often adopted, to the extent possible, within developing countries. Thus, increases in U.S. funding will favorably impact animal production enterprises in developing countries.
With the lack of increase in public funding of animal science research, private/industry support has increased. The focus of industry funding is more toward applied areas that can be commercialized in the short term. Many of these applications are built on concepts developed from publicly funded basic research. With the increased animal protein demands, especially poultry, more publicly funded basic research is needed.
RECOMMENDATION 3-1: To meet current and future animal protein demand, and to sustain corresponding infrastructure and capacity, public support for animal science research (especially basic research) should be restored to at least past levels of real dollars and maintained at a rate that meets or exceeds the annual rate of research inflation. This is especially critical for those species (i.e., poultry) for which the consumer demand is projected to significantly increase by 2050 and for those species with the greatest opportunity for reducing the
Productivity and Production Efficiency
Regarding productivity and production efficiency, the committee finds that increasing production efficiency while reducing the environmental footprint and cost per unit of animal protein product is essential to achieving a sustainable, affordable, and secure animal protein supply. Technological improvements have led to system/structural changes in animal production industries whereby more efficient food production and less regional, national, and global environmental impact have been realized.
RECOMMENDATION 3-2: Support of technology development and adoption should continue by both public and private sectors. Three criteria of sustainability—(1) reducing the environmental footprint, (2) reducing the financial cost per unit of animal protein produced, and (3) enhancing societal determinants of sustainable global animal agriculture acceptability—should be used to guide funding decisions about animal agricultural research and technological development to increase production efficiency (Section 3-2 in Chapter 3).
Breeding and Genetic Technologies
Further development and adoption of breeding technologies and genetics, which have been the major contributors to past increases in animal productivity, efficiency, product quality, environmental, and economic advancements, are needed to meet future demand.
RECOMMENDATION 3-3: Research should be conducted to understand societal concerns regarding the adoption of these technologies and the most effective methods to respectfully engage and communicate with the public (Section 3-3 in Chapter 3).
The committee notes that understanding the nutritional requirements of the genetically or ontogenetically changing animal is crucial for
optimal productivity, efficiency, and health. Research devoted to an understanding of amino acid, energy, fiber, mineral, and vitamin nutrition has led to technological innovations such as production of individual amino acids to help provide a diet that more closely resembles the animal’s requirements, resulting in improved efficiency, animal health, and environmental gains, as well as lower costs; however, much more can be realized with additional knowledge gained from research.
RECOMMENDATION 3-4: Research should continue to develop a better understanding of nutrient metabolism and utilization in the animal and the effects of those nutrients on gene expression. A systems-based holistic approach needs to be utilized that involves ingredient preparation, understanding of ingredient digestion, nutrient metabolism and utilization through the body, hormonal controls, and regulators of nutrient utilization. Of particular importance is basic and applied research in keeping the knowledge of nutrient requirements of animals current (Section 3-4 in Chapter 3).
Potential waste products from the production of human food, biofuel, or industrial production streams can and are being converted to economical, high-value animal protein products. Alternative feed ingredients are important in completely or partially replacing high-value and unsustainable ingredients, particularly fish meal and fish oil, or ingredients that may otherwise compete directly with human consumption.
RECOMMENDATION 3-6.1: Research should continue to identify alternative feed ingredients that are inedible to humans and will notably reduce the cost of animal protein production while improving the environmental footprint. These investigations should include assessment of the possible impact of changes in the protein product on the health of the animal and the eventual human consumer, as well as the environment (Section 3-6.1 in Chapter 3).
The subtherapeutic use of medically important antibiotics in animal production is being phased out and may be eliminated in the United States. This potential elimination of subtherapeutic use of medically important antibiotics presents a major challenge.
RECOMMENDATION 3-7: There is a need to explore alternatives to the use of medically important subtherapeutic antibiotics while providing the same or greater benefits in improved feed efficiency, disease prevention, and overall animal health (Section 3-7 in Chapter 3).
Rising concern about animal welfare is a force shaping the future direction of animal agricultural production. Animal welfare research, underemphasized in the United States compared to Europe, has become a high-priority topic. Research capacity in the United States is not commensurate with respect to the level of stakeholder interest in this topic.
RECOMMENDATION 3-8: There is a need to build capacity and direct funding toward the high-priority animal welfare research areas identified by the committee. This research should be focused on current and emerging housing systems, management, and production practices for food animals in the United States. FFAR, USDA-AFRI, and USDA-ARS should carry out an animal welfare research prioritization process that incorporates relevant stakeholders and focuses on identifying key commodity-specific, system-specific, and basic research needs, as well as mechanisms for building capacity for this area of research (Section 3-8 in Chapter 3).
Although there is uncertainty regarding the degree and geographical variability, climate change will nonetheless impact animal agriculture in diverse ways, from affecting feed quality and quantity to causing environmental stress in agricultural animals. Animal agriculture affects
and is affected by these changes, in some cases significantly, and must adapt to them in order to provide the quantity and affordability of animal protein expected by society. This adaptation, in turn, has important implications for sustainable production. The committee finds that adaptive strategies will be a critical component of promoting the resilience of U.S. animal agriculture in confronting climate change and variability.
RECOMMENDATION 3-11.2: Research needs to be devoted to the development of geographically appropriate climate change adaptive strategies and their effect on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and pollutants involving biogeochemical cycling, such as that of carbon and nitrogen, from animal agriculture because adaptation and mitigation are often interrelated and should not be independently considered. Additional empirical research quantifying GHG emissions sources from animal agriculture should be conducted to fill current knowledge gaps, improve the accuracy of emissions inventories, and be useful for improving and developing mathematical models predicting GHG emissions from animal agriculture (Section 3-11.2 in Chapter 3).
Although socioeconomic research is critical to the successful adoption of new technologies in animal agriculture, insufficient attention has been directed to such research. Few animal science departments in the United States have social sciences or bioethics faculty in their departments who can carry out this kind of research.
RECOMMENDATION 3-12: Socioeconomic and animal science research should be integrated so that researchers, administrators, and decision makers can be guided and informed in conducting and funding effective, efficient, and productive research and technology transfer (Section 3-12 in Chapter 3).
Communications: The committee recognizes a broad communication gap related to animal agricultural research and objectives between the
animal science community and the consumer. This gap must be bridged if animal protein needs of 2050 are to be fulfilled.
RECOMMENDATION 3-13: There is a need to establish a strong focus on communications research as related to animal science research and animal agriculture, with the goals of enhancing knowledge dissemination, respectful stakeholder participation and engagement, and informed decision making (Section 3-13 in Chapter 3).
Recommendations for Global Animal Agriculture
Overall, the committee strongly supports an increase in funding of global animal research both by governments and the private sector. The committee also identified several recommendations directed toward global animal agriculture.
The committee notes that per capita consumption of animal protein will be increasing more quickly in developing countries than in developed countries through 2050. Animal science research priorities have been proposed by stakeholders in high-income countries, with primarily U.S. Agency for International Development, World Bank, Food and Agriculture Organization, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, and nongovernmental organizations individually providing direction for developing countries. A program such as the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) demonstrates progress toward building better planning in agricultural development in developing countries, through the composite inclusion of social, environmental, and economic pillars of sustainability.
In addition, for at least the last two decades, governments worldwide have been reducing their funding for infrastructure development and training for animal sciences research. Countries and international funding agencies should be encouraged to adapt an integrated agriculture research system to be part of a comprehensive and holistic approach to agriculture production. A system such as CAADP can be adapted for this purpose.
RECOMMENDATION 4-1: To sustainably meet increasing demands for animal protein in developing countries, stakeholders at the national level should be
The committee finds that proven technologies and innovations that are improving food security, economics, and environmental sustainability in high-income countries are not being utilized by all developed or developing countries because in some cases they may not be logistically transferrable or in other ways unable to cross political boundaries. A key barrier to technological adoption is the lack of extension to smallholder farmers about how to utilize the novel technologies for sustainable and improved production as well as to articulate smallholder concerns and needs to the research community. Research objectives to meet the challenge of global food security and sustainability should focus on the transfer of existing knowledge and technology (adoption and, importantly, adaptation where needed) to nations and populations in need, a process that may benefit from improved technologies that meet the needs of multiple, local producers. Emphasis should be placed on extension of knowledge to women in developing nations.
RECOMMENDATION 4-5.2: Research devoted to understanding and overcoming the barriers to technology adoption in developed and developing countries needs to be conducted. Focus should be on the educational and communication role of local extension and advisory personnel toward successful adoption of the technology, with particular emphasis on the training of women (Section 4-5.2 in Chapter 4).
Zoonotic diseases account for 70 percent of emerging infectious diseases. The cost of the six major outbreaks that have occurred between 1997 and 2009 was $80 billion. During the last two decades, the greatest challenge facing animal health has been the lack of resources available to combat several emerging and reemerging infectious diseases. The current level of animal production in many developing countries cannot increase and be sustained without research into the incidence and epidemiology of disease and effective training to manage disease outbreaks, including technically reliable disease investigation and case findings. Infrastructure
is lacking in developing countries to combat animal and zoonotic diseases, specifically a lack of disease specialists and diagnostic laboratory facilities that would include focus on the etiology of diseases. There is a lack of critical knowledge about zoonoses presence, prevalence, drivers, and impact. Recent advances in technology offer opportunities for improving the understanding of zoonoses epidemiology and control.
RECOMMENDATION 4-7.1: Research, education (e.g., training in biosecurity), and appropriate infrastructures should be enhanced in developing countries to alleviate the problems of animal diseases and zoonoses that result in enormous losses to animal health, animal producer livelihoods, national and regional economies, and human health (Section 4-7.1 in Chapter 4).
As discussed above, in addition to the recommendations presented in this summary, the committee identified complementary priorities for research, research support, and infrastructure which specifically address the contents of and can be found in chapters 3-5.