New research chair aims to add value to feed ingredients

For Rex Newkirk, his new job at the University of Saskatchewan is a return to the place where it all began.

Newkirk received his bachelors, masters and PhD degrees at the U of S and then worked as a research associate.

He then worked at the Canadian International Grains Institute for 12 years. Newkirk is now back at the U of S as the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture Endowed Research Chair in Feed Processing Technology.

“It’s great to be back … it’s something I’m passionate about and I love to do research, I love working with customers,” Newkirk said.

In Newkirk’s new position, he is expected to teach, as well as take on research projects and serve as the scientific lead for the Canadian Feed Research Centre in North Battleford.

“My primary responsibility is to work with the industry, work with producers, work with the government agencies, work with the organizations here at the university, work with researchers to do whatever is necessary to enhance the value and bring more return back to producers and to the industry,” Newkirk said.

Newkirk sees a lot of opportunities to add value to undervalued ingredients.

“One of the things I hope to accomplish is to work with researchers and make sure they’re using the right processes in their feeding studies to make sure that the ingredients are processed in a commercially relevant way,” Newkirk said.

Newkirk was appointed chair Nov. 1 and since then he has been meeting with different agriculture groups in order to find out what work they would like to see done.

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