June 15, 2012--The Equine Feed Oat Project appointed six leading experts on equine nutrition and oats to serve on a first-of-its-kind Advisory Board that will become the recognized, authoritative source on the nutritional benefits of equine oats. The Equine Feed Oat Project announced Thursday the members of the Equine Oat Research Advisory Board (EORAB) Executive Committee:
- Dr. Nathaniel White II, DVM, MS, DACVS, Professor of Surgery at Virginia Tech’s Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center
- Dr. Lori Warren, University of Florida, Department of Animal Sciences, Associate Professor
- Dr. Mary Beth Gordon, Land O’Lakes Purina® Director of Equine Research and New Product Development
- Dr. Emily Lamprecht, Cargill, Technology Lead-Consumer Nutrition
- Dr. Brian Rossnagel, University of Saskatchewan College of Agriculture and Bioresources Professor Emeritus
- Bill Wilton, Prairie Oat Growers Association President
“We are honored to have such a prestigious group of experts representing the oat industry and equine nutrition who have agreed to serve on the Equine Oat Research Advisory Board Executive Committee,” said Bill Wilton, President of the Prairie Oat Growers Association, a non-profit organization. “Their knowledge, expertise and credentials are unparalleled in their respective professions, and we are excited to have such an esteemed group of individuals who will be responsible for leading the Advisory Board and the future of equine oat research.”
The Equine Oat Research Advisory Board was established by the Equine Feed Oat Project, an initiative of the Prairie Oat Growers Association, which represents 20,000 hard-working Canadian oat growers. The Equine Oat Research Advisory Board will be comprised of representatives from across the equine, oat and research industries and will be comprised of: university researchers, equine nutritionists, extension specialists, equine veterinarians, feed manufacturers, oat millers, equine publication representatives, plant breeders and a member at large. The EORAB’s objectives are to:
- Provide counsel and advice on research studies that may increase the nutritional value of the oat to the equine market;
- Review research proposals and determine which equine related studies should be funded;
- Advise on further research or determine next steps based on research findings;
- Become the source one equine nutrition information for the equine industry.
“Our vision for the Equine Oat Research Advisory Board is to commission the scientific research necessary to prove the nutritional benefits of feeding oats to horses in order to better educate horse owners who are responsible for making feed-purchase decisions,” Wilton said.
The Equine Oat Research Advisory Board plans to commission at least one research project annually. The call for research pre-proposals is set for June 15th. The remainder of the Equine Oat Research Advisory Board members will be announced this summer. The Board will hold its first meeting in early 2013 to review research proposal submissions.
In March, the Equine Feed Oat Project brought together representatives from some of the top university equine programs in the country including: the University of Kentucky, Pennsylvania State University, the University of Florida, Michigan State University, Rutgers University, North Dakota State University and Texas A&M. In addition, oat millers from General Mills, PepsiCo-Quaker Oats and Viterra Oat and Specialty Grain Milling attended the meeting, along with representatives from Land O’Lakes Purina Feed, Agricultural Canada and the Prairie Oat Growers Association.
During the meeting, the group discussed the future of oat research and equine nutrition. They evaluated nutrients contained in the oat hull that benefit horses, along with beneficial nutrients in the groat (whole oat without the hull). Equine nutritionists suggested breeding an oat with a higher-fiber (higher-energy), more digestible hull. Another nutritional component discussed was starch. The equine nutrition researchers indicated there is a common misconception among many horse owners that all starch is bad for horses. They explained starch is only harmful to some horses, such as those with metabolic disorders and those that are insulin-resistant. They said for the majority of horses, however, some starch is necessary, as it provides a major source of energy for the horse. The researchers, including an extension specialist, emphasized that horse owners have expressed a desire to have access to factual, credible information about equine nutrition. Some of these topics were discussed at the EORAB’s first Executive Committee meeting as potential research topics for 2013.
“What we’ve heard from horse owners, time and time again, is that there is a tremendous lack of information on equine nutrition in the marketplace,” Wilton. “In addition, there is a vast amount of conflicting information, which understandably contributes to the confusion of horse owners. Our goal in creating the Equine Oat Research Advisory Board is to educate horse owners about equine nutrition based on factual, scientific research.”
Below is a brief biography of the individuals who have been appointed to sit on the EORAB Executive Committee:
- Dr. Nathaniel White II, DVM, MS, DACVS, Professor of Surgery at Virginia Tech’s Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center
Dr. White is a professor of surgery at Virginia Tech’s Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center. After receiving a doctor of veterinary medicine at Cornell University in 1971, he completed an internship and residency in surgery at the University of California-Davis from 1971 to 1973, and earned a master of science in pathology at Kansas State University in 1976. He is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS). Dr. White, who has served on the faculties of both Kansas State University and the University of Georgia, joined the Marion duPont Scott Equine Medical Center in 1985, and held the positions of Theodora Ayer Randolph Professor of Surgery at Virginia Tech from 1987 to 2003 and the Jean Ellen Shehan Professor and Director from 2003 to 2012. A world-renowned expert in colic, Dr. White has authored several books on the topic including Equine Acute Abdomen, and Handbook of Equine Colic as well as the surgical texts Current Techniques in Equine Surgery and Lameness, and Current Practice of Equine Surgery. He has been a director for the ACVS Veterinary Symposium since 1997, and is a past president of the ACVS and of the ACVS Research and Education Foundation. Dr. White is a former director-at-large for the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) and is an AAEP Past President. Dr. White’s research interests include pathophysiology of ischemia-reperfusion, epidemiology of colic, abdominal and orthopedic surgery, and treatment of orthopedic diseases. He is a member of the AAEP, the ACVS and the American Veterinary Medical Association.
- Lori K. Warren, Ph.D., PAS, Associate Professor at the University of Florida’s Department of Animal Sciences
Dr. Warren completed her BS at the University of Wyoming and her MS and Ph.D. at the University of Kentucky with a dual emphasis in equine nutrition and exercise physiology. She served as Alberta’s Provincial Horse Specialist from 2000-02 and the Extension Equine Specialist at Colorado State University from 2002-04 before joining the faculty at the University of Florida (UF) in 2004. At UF, she holds the rank of associate professor with a 70% research, 30% teaching appointment. Her research evaluates the effects of nutrition on athletic performance, immune function, and reproduction. She also works towards finding management and nutrition solutions to minimize the environmental impact of horse manure on water quality. In 2007-08, Warren served on the National Research Council (NRC) Committee tasked with evaluating the safety of dietary supplements for horses, dogs and cats. She currently serves on the executive committee of the Equine Science Society, is a board member of the Florida Feed Technical Council and the Horse Industry Association of Alberta, and is a member of the American Society of Animal Science and American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists.
- Dr. Mary Beth Gordon, Director of Equine Research and New Product Development at Land O’Lakes Purina®
Dr. Mary Beth Gordon is the Director of Equine Research and New Product Development for Purina® horse products. She also serves as the Director of the Purina Equine Research Facility. Dr. Gordon received her Ph.D. in Equine Nutrition and Exercise Physiology from Rutgers University. Her research focused on the effects of exercise on the hormonal regulation of appetite in horses, and her work was the first to characterize the appetite stimulating hormone, ghrelin, in equine. She is published in numerous scientific journals including The Veterinary Journal, Journal of Animal Science and Equine Comparative Exercise Physiology. She has also co-authored chapters in textbooks such as Equine Sports Medicine and Surgery, as well as the new edition of The Athletic Horse. Dr. Gordon joined Land O’Lakes Purina Feed in 2005 and has led the research, formulation and reformulation of more than 15 horse products since her inception. In addition to her work as a nutritionist and exercise physiologist, Dr. Gordon is active in the sport horse world as a competitive dressage rider.
- Dr. Emily Lamprecht, Technology Lead-Consumer Nutrition at Cargill
A Missouri native, Dr. Lamprecht earned her doctorate in Endocrinology and Animal Biosciences (with an emphasis on equine nutrition and exercise physiology) in 2009 from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. She also holds bachelor’s degrees in Animal Science and Psychology from University of Missouri, Columbia (2003, 2004). Her doctoral research focused on exercise-induced inflammation and antioxidant status of intensely exercised horses, and addressed the effectiveness of a supplemental antioxidant enzyme intended to mitigate conditions associated with the onset of chronic disease. Dr. Lamprecht is a professional member of the American Society of Animal Science and the Equine Science Society as well as the Minnesota Horse Council. She joined the Cargill Animal Nutrition Strategic Marketing and Technology team in August 2009 and currently serves in the role of Technology Lead for Consumer Nutrition. Her primary responsibilities include formulation, managing research and new product development for the equine and pet businesses within the United States and internationally, as well as providing technical support to Cargill businesses, veterinarians, feed dealers, consultants and customers. In her spare time, Dr. Lamprecht can be found volunteering with the Minnesota Search and Rescue Dog Association and continues to be an active member of the equine community. She trains and shows her horse in the sport of dressage and enjoys trail riding and hiking.
- Dr. Brian Rossnagel, Professor Emeritus at the University of Saskatchewan’s College of Agriculture and Bioresources
Dr. Brian Rossnagel is currently Professor Emeritus at the University of Saskatchewan’s Crop Development Centre. Prior to retirement on April 30, 2011, Dr. Rossnagel was a Plant Sciences Professor and the barley and oat breeder for the Crop Development Centre at the University of Saskatchewan for 34 years from 1977 until 2011. Raised on a small mixed farm in central Manitoba, he earned a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture (1973) and then a Ph.D. in Plant Breeding and Agronomy (1978) at the University of Manitoba. Over his career, he has released 90 barley and oat varieties with a wide range of specific uses from low-lignin, high-fat feed oats to two-row malting barley. Some additional keystones of his breeding and research career are the development of hulless barley for feed, food and malting and consistent regional, national and international collaboration with other researchers including cereal chemists, animal nutritionists, agronomists, plant biotechnologists and plant pathologists. Having been conferred numerous honors and awards over the last few decades, his three most recent commendations are receiving the American Oat Workers Conference Distinguished Service to Oat Improvement Award, recognition as a University of Saskatchewan Distinguished Chair and induction into the Saskatchewan Agriculture Hall of Fame. While retired, Dr. Rossnagel continues to work on some specialty oat and barley breeding projects at the Crop Development Centre assisting Dr. Aaron Beattie who is now Professor in charge of the CDC oat and barley breeding programs.
- Bill Wilton, President of the Prairie Oat Growers Association
William (Bill) Cameron Wilton has served as president of the Prairie Oat Growers Association (POGA) since 2006. Before that, he spent three years as a director of the organization. Under Wilton’s management, POGA has implemented an oat check-off system to provide sustainable funding to the organization. As a result, POGA members contribute $0.50 for every ton of oats they sell to a commercial operation. Currently, the Prairie Oat Growers Association is made up of 20,000 hard-working oat farmers from the Canadian provinces of Saskatchewan and Manitoba. The province of Alberta is expected to join the organization on August 1, 2012.
Wilton graduated from the University of Manitoba with a degree in Civil Engineering.
During the 1960s, Wilton purchased a car dealership from his father and operated it as Wilton Mercury Sales. Under Wilton’s management, the company also built a substantial vehicle leasing company known as CWD Leasing and Rentals and a separate Ford truck dealership. Wilton, along with three of his brothers, later purchased a John Deere dealership and opened a new facility in Winnipeg, Manitoba after Ford Motor Company awarded him a truck franchise. During his time in the automobile business, Wilton served as a director, and later as president, of the Manitoba Motor Dealers Association, which was recognized by Time Magazine as the “Time Quality Dealer of the Year” for Manitoba.
During the 1980s, Wilton and his brother purchased their father’s Manitoba farm and operated it for the next decade. In 1995, Wilton purchased a different piece of farmland in Manitoba where he continues to grow oats, canola and soybeans on 1,200 acres.