Co-ordination between research institutions is encouraged by Milk SA, while the research is promoted that is functional in respect of the strategic direction of the South African dairy industry and the practical application of local and international research and development by the South African industry. These actions are taken in consultation with public and private research institutions, including universities and provincial departments.
Synergy is obtained through the establishment of Co-operative Research Networks, which require that expertise and other resources of different institutions (nationally and
R&D Projects are being conducted and encouraged within the disciplines of: Feed Sources & Nutrition; Dairy Products, Nutraceuticals and Consumerism; Genetics, Physiology & Reproduction; The Environment; Management, Techno-economics and Markets; Animal Health, Bio-security & Welfare; and Food Safety & Quality.
Furthermore, individual projects have been established for animal welfare, animal health and environmental sustainability.
The Milk SA publication "Sustainability in the SA dairy industry: A status and progress report" contains the most recent principles and practices pertaining to the organized dairy industry's endeavours to support and promote a viable, competitive and ethically sound SA dairy industry - and is updated every six months. The document "What is really important to ensure sustainability in the dairy industry?" is also relevant in this respect.
As the dairy industry is often confronted with anti-cattle campaigns, the document: “Anti-cattle campaign: Arguments to refute claims" empowers industry participants with the necessary facts.
Existing research knowledge is conveyed to the industry players through scientific articles - sourced from international literature - which are posted on the Milk SA website under the title "The Research Column" as well as published in industry publications.
An inventory of ongoing and finalized research projects is updated biennially and circulated amongst researchers and other industry players. This ensures harmonization and a co-ordinated approach towards dairy research in South Africa.
Dr Heinz Meissner