Food, Global Health 3 min

Galactinnov: creation of an international research network for high-quality and sustainable dairy production

PRESS RELEASE - The GALACTINNOV International Research Network (Réseau de recherche à l’international or 2RI) agreement was signed on Friday 7 May, during an online meeting hosted by Marie-Josée Hébert, Vice-Rector for Research, Discovery, Creation and Innovation at the University of Montreal, and Philippe Mauguin, Chair and CEO of INRAE. The launch event was attended by representatives and scientists from the eight partners of the Franco-Canadian network: INRAE, Institut Agro, the National Veterinary School of Toulouse (ENVT), the University of Tours in France, and the University of Montreal, Université Laval, the University of Sherbrooke and McGill University in Quebec, Canada. Their common objective is to structure their collaboration based on high-quality dairy production while respecting the environment as well as animal health and welfare.

Published on 10 May 2021

illustration Galactinnov: creation of an international research network for high-quality and sustainable dairy production
© Galactinnov

The GALACTINNOV network helps shape a fruitful collaboration between ten research units under the supervision of French partner institutions, as well as four Quebec universities, grouped together in the « Op+lait » consortium.

Scientific priorities and shared activities

The common objective of the network is to reflect the scientific priorities of all the partners as well as of the Fonds de Recherche du Québec - Nature et Technologies.

GALACTINNOV network activities will focus on the quality of milk and dairy products, the health and welfare of dairy cows, breeding practices and microbiota associated with milk and dairy products. The GALACTINNOV network aims to:

  • share knowledge, expertise and training
  • organise symposia,
  • develop mobility and exchanges between laboratories,
  • implement common communication tools.

Systemic and multidisciplinary approaches

The approaches developed within the network are consistent with the systemic and multidisciplinary approaches of French institutions. At INRAE, this network involves several scientific divisions in the fields of animal breeding, microbiology, social sciences, food quality, and animal genetics and health. Moreover, the multidisciplinary approaches at work in this network dynamic are in line with the scientific objectives of certain INRAE Metaprogrammes, which are scientific coordination and programming mechanisms that require systemic and interdisciplinary approaches. Three metaprogrammes can be cited as examples: Farm animal health and welfare, Holobionts and microbial flux within agrifood systems, and Scaling-up organic agriculture.

The theme of the network is also in line with ENVT major research areas, which focus on livestock farming which is healthy, respectful of the environment and of animal and human health.

In the case of AgroCampus Ouest, as an internal school of the Institut Agro, the issues of sustainable dairy production and high-quality processed products covered by the Galactinnov network project correspond to both the scientific and innovation priorities share  with socio-economic partners (e.g. as part of the Bba MILK VALLEY consortium) of the institution, located in the heart of France's leading agrifood production area.

For the University of Tours, this project is fully consistent with the strong partnership developed with INRAE around three joint research units that bring together over 450 people for research on infectiology, physiology and the development of sustainable breeding systems. Galactinnov is at the intersection of these three research fields and part an integrated study of the determinants and methods for improving milk quality.

In the long term, the GALACTINNOV network will increase the scope and visibility of the research carried out within the partner institutions and develop new international collaborations by stimulating multidisciplinary approaches.

INRAE Op+lait meeting in November 2019 in Montréal

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