by PAT CURRIE
On the grounds that more knowledge about swine nutrition can only help swine producers understand the full impact of feed on production costs, the Ontario Pork Industry Council (OPIC) has announced details of a self-directed educational project for producers that will also include better business-management skills.
"Feed is a very expensive part of the cost of production," Greg Simpson, an Elora-based swine nutritionist with the Ontario ministry of agriculture said Friday.
Simpson worked on developing the project along with Professor Paul Luimes of the University of Guelph, Ridgetown campus.
Each learning module developed by Luimese and Simpson contains a quiz to allow users to self-assess their knowledge after completing each one, OPIC spokesperson Sue Shafer said.
OPIC managing director Lori Moser said the course will help fill "a gap in the availability of continuing education and training courses for swine producers who wish to enhance their understanding and gain greater oversight of their nutrition program as it relates to cost of production."
It might also be picked up by farmers in other provinces, Moser said.
The free learning program can lead to a certificate from OPIC and qualify participants for a second phase in the program which includes participation in a diet formulation training session, said OPUIC spokesp[erson Sue Shafer.
Phase One is now underway and participants can register for the e-training at www.opic.on.ca . For more information contact Sue Shafer, firstname.lastname@example.org , 519-993-0469. BF