by SUSAN MANN
The veterinarians trained at the University of Guelph’s Ontario Veterinary College provide key support to Ontario’s meat, dairy, poultry and egg industries, a sector worth $20 billion annually, according to a new report on the college’s economic impact in the province.
In addition, the report outlines the broad-based value the college provides to Ontario and other jurisdictions, particularly when it comes to animal health and food production, food security, emergency preparedness and infectious diseases, University of Guelph president Franco Vaccarino says in a Sept. 9 press release.
Prepared by global consulting firm Deloitte LLP, the report was released Tuesday at the opening of Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show in Woodstock. Deloitte reviewed the 152-year-old veterinary school as part of a process to support its reaccreditation by the American Veterinary Medical Association Council on Education.
University news service officer Kevin Gonsalves says by email the college is currently in the “self-assessment phase of the reaccreditation process” and the accreditation panel will do a site visit in the fall of 2015. The economic impact study is helpful for the reaccreditation process but it isn’t required of each veterinary college.
Gonsalves says the study done on the college is helpful “in determining the future of the college. It also allows government and the public to see the impact of OVC (Ontario Veterinary College) not just on animal health but also economically and in research and human health.”
Other information in the report includes:
- OVC directly contributes $125 million to Ontario’s economy annually and generates 800 jobs each year.
- About one-third of veterinarians educated in Canada graduate from OVC and the majority of them stay in Ontario.
- The private businesses established by these graduates have an estimated annual economic impact of $1.3 billion.
- From 2008 to 2013, OVC and its graduates created 4,000 jobs in Ontario and generated more than $218 million in labour income.
- Each year, OVC gets about $34.4 million in operating funding from the Ontario government. OVC generates an additional $29 million through research, hospital revenue, endowments and donations.
- OVC is Ontario’s only veterinary school and one of five in Canada.
Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Minister Jeff Leal says by email his ministry “has a long-standing positive partnership with OVC. The OVC is an economic engine for this province and I look forward to continuing our innovative partnership.” BF