BMO's Dave Dielemn (right) and UBC's Jim Thompson unveil a plaque that will commemorate a $250

BMO's Dave Dielemn (right) and UBC's Jim Thompson unveil a plaque that will commemorate a $250

UBC Dairy and Research Centre gets huge boost from BMO

Money will directly benefit the students at Agassiz dairy program

Students at the UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre got a major boost Wednesday morning, when a major financial institution handed over an early Christmas present.

BMO Financial Group handed over a cheque for $250,000, during the centre’s advisory committee meeting in the main conference room.

As a way of commemorating the donation — one of the largest ever seen at the centre — that conference room has been named after BMO, and a plaque that was unveiled will be hung in the main hallway outside the room.

Nelson Dinn, manager of the UBC centre, said the donation was “huge and much appreciated.”

“It’s a quarter million dollars we didn’t have last week,” he said. “It’s substantial.”

The education centre is working dairy farm that provides training and education for those interested in farming. But even more than that, the centre heads up research that seeks to improve the dairy industry.

And that’s one of the main reasons BMO said they made the donation.

Dave Dieleman, BMO’s Director of agricultural markets in B.C., spoke to a crowd of about 50 people, including students, farmers and industry leaders at the Wednesday meeting.

“We’ve maintained a long standing commitment to agriculture,” he said. “Agriculture is the backbone of the community.”

And dairy farmer plays a major role in the province’s economic health.

In B.C., the dairy industry represents 18.5 per cent of total farming cash receipts, with about 525 farms producing more than 660 million litres of milk each year.  Last year, B.C.’s dairy farms spent more than $400 million in their local economies, and BMO said that translates into a $2 billion injection into the overall provincial economy.

“Since dairy farming is capital intensive, it is an important industry in rural Canada, requiring products and services from a wide range of agri-businesses, professionals and retailers in neighbouring communities,” Dieleman said.

This is not the first time BMO has invested in UBC, and last year the financial group contributed $54.3 million across Canada and the United States.

“We recognize the role UBC plays in advancing the dairy industry locally, nationally, and even internationally,” he said.

Dr. Jim Thompson met with BMO five years ago to chat about the possibility of a donation. He expressed his thanks at Wednesday’s meeting and explained  that while studies will often receive funding from outside sources, the school itself does not.

Both Thompson and Dinn said the donation will improve the overall excellence of the centre.

“The end benefit is basically, the students win,” Dinn said. The donation could result in more students having access to the centre. And more students translates into more research, which eventually would benefit the entire agricultural industry.

Some of the topics being researched in Agassiz include cattle comfort and manure management.

The UBC Dairy Education and Research Centre is the largest dairy cattle research facility in Canada, and one of the largest in the world. Their state-of-the-art equipment is designed to continuously monitor and record animal feeding animal feeding and other behaviours.

news@ahobserver.com

Related story

Girl Guides visit UBC dairy centre

 

Just Posted

Chilliwack Fire Department. (Chilliwack Progress file)
Fire crews respond to house fire on border of Chilliwack and Abbotsford

Flames, dark smoke reported coming from front of house when crews arrived

Brandon Hobbs (turquoise shirt), brother of missing Abbotsford man Adam Hobbs, gathers with other family and friends to distribute posters in Chilliwack on Thursday, June 17, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Search efforts expand to Chilliwack and beyond for missing Abbotsford man

Family, friends put up posters in Chilliwack, Agassiz, Hope for missing 22-year-old Adam Hobbs

AHL president and CEO Scott Howson believes the new Abbotsford franchise is off to a strong early start. (AHL photo)
AHL president: ‘Tremendous success’ selling season ticket deposits for Abbotsford franchise

President and CEO Scott Howson optimistic about new Vancouver Canucks affiliate in Abbotsford

Stock photo by LEEROY Agency from Pixabay
Drop-in vaccination clinics slated in Abbotsford for construction workers

Among three sites in Lower Mainland holding no-appointment clinics in June and July

A CH-149 Cormorant from 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron out of CFB Comox on a training exercise in Chilliwack on June 16, 2021. (William Snow photo)
VIDEO: Military search and rescue training in Chilliwack Wednesday

CH-149 Cormorant and CC-115 Buffalo from CFB Comox participated in downed aircraft rescue simulation

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Helen Austin performing with Trent Freeman at the 2018 Vancouver Island MusicFest. Austin is one of the many performers listed for the 2021 event.
Vancouver Island MusicFest goes virtual for 2021

Black Press to stream 25 hours of programming July 9-11

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

Most Read