The 2019 Allen D. Leman Swine Conference offered science-based solutions to swine producers and veterinarians

The 2019 edition of the Allen D. Leman swine conference held in St. Paul, MN continued to offer a wide range of high-quality, science-driven presentations while innovating on several aspects of its program.

Zack Talbert received the Morrison Swine Innovator Prize from Dr. Perle Zhitnitskiy

This year marked the second year that a student received the Morrison Swine Innovator Prize. Zack Talbert, a student from the University of Illinois was truly honored to be the second recipient of this prestigious recognition. Zack received a $7,500 scholarship in addition to participating in an exclusive workshop with the other DVM students-presenters. The quality of the students’ presentations was excellent but the innovation with which Zack tackled the issue of fumigation set him apart for the jury.

Sunday afternoon, the second edition of Beer and Bacon conversation hosted Dr. Luke Minion from Pipestone Veterinary Services, interviewed by Dr. Marie Culhane. This session was extremely well-attended and we plan to continue the series next year. Stay tuned for the 

The conference opened on a tribute to Dr. Mike Murtaugh given by Dr. Tom Gillespie, a collaborator and long-time friend of Mike. Mike passed away on the last day of the conference last year from his battle against pancreatic cancer. The University of Minnesota has created a fellowship to honor his legacy in high quality research.

Dr. Nate Winkelman with Dr. Montse Torremorell, UMN (left) and Dr. Lucina Galina, Zoetis (right)

We celebrated Dr. Nate Winkelman for his well-deserved recognition as the Science in Practice awardee of the year. Currently the AASV president, Dr. Winkelman is an expert on swine ileitis control and has had an extensive career as a field researcher. He continues to be an inspiration for his peers. The reception held in the Science museum in St Paul was sponsored by Zoetis.

The 2019 Allen D. Leman conference continued to propose high quality keynote speakers.

Dr. Terry Coffey from Smithfield’s Foods gave the Morrison lecture and presented how research is part of the production model in the company and how they apply the results down the pork chain to increase value for all key actors, from the producer to the consumer. 

Dr. Connie Gebhart and her PhD student April Estrada

Dr. Connie Gebhart gave the Pijoan lecture and second keynote presentation of the conference. She shared the advances her research program made in understanding the genome of Streptococcus suis and how it influences the pathogenicity of the strains seen on the farm.

On the second day, Dr. Jerry Torrison chaired the keynote addresses. Christine McCracken from Rabobank highlighted the impact of African Swine Fever on the protein markets.She reminded us that 75% of the world’s pigs are at risk and that it may take years for China to rebuild their pork industry.

Dr. Mike Ellis from the University of Illinois discussed issues and opportunities in managing piglet preweaning mortality. For Ellis, preweaning mortality is a complex, multifactorial issue and we may need to change our paradigm. 

Lastly, we concluded our program with a live carcass-cutting demonstration sponsored by Hormel Foods, in collaboration with the Meat Laboratory from the University of Minnesota, a fun way to discuss pork products while enjoying lunch. 

As always, we would like to thank all of you for your continuing support. The Allen D. Leman swine conference would not exist without you and we hope to see you next year: September 19-22, 2020.

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