Dear Fellow Scientists,
The Society is celebrating 50 years of Animal Science and we have come a long way since the establishment in 1961. The mission statement however still apply “To promote animal science and viable animal production systems with due consideration of sustaining the natural resources and environment and in the process serving mankind”.
The Journal established in 1971 has strengthened the Society and has reached an impact factor of 0.687. The past 50 years was good to us, but we now have to move forward for the next 50 years. Technology innovations have not been limited to the way we practise Animal Science, but also in the way we conduct the business of the Society. SASAS will have to face several challenges and make use of new opportunities in the years to come to ensure that our Society remains relevant and viable for moving the Animal Science profession forward.
“Every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision & change” (R. Branson).
A successful congress
The 50th Congress of our Society was hosted by the Eastern Cape branch in Port Elizabeth from 18-21 September, with 360 delegates attending this great event. The theme was “Golden innovations for sustainable animal agriculture” that included plenary sessions covering important issues on animal welfare, new technologies and the challenges for sustainable livestock production. It is encouraging to note the large number of post graduate students and young animal scientists that attended the congress and presented oral or poster presentations. This year 9 highly competitive teams entered for the Veeplaas student Quiz with Prof Katho Nephawe as the Quiz Master and Mr Fans Naudé, Prof Eddie Webb and Dr Linky Makhlalela as the judging panel. The UP Tuks team won the Veeplaas Student Quiz! At the Gala dinner outstanding contributions by SA Animal Scientists was recognised and several awards were presented in the different categories (see congress highlights). On behalf of Council, I would like to congratulate the organizing committee for a successful and well organised event!
The council (attached) elected for the next term had their first meeting on the 21 September and is ready to serve the members. You have placed your trust in us and we hope to deliver on your expectations. Communication will be a high priority and be prepared to become actively involved in your Society!
As Animal Scientists we are entering a new phase with Continuing Professional Development (CPD) now part of our professional activities. You are encouraged to register and a fact sheet on the CPD process will be circulated to assist with the process.
As discussed at the AGM SASAS members need to re-think the frequency of congresses to ensure high quality science will be presented and that congresses will remain affordable. Congresses are an important part of the activities of our Society and provides opportunity for networking and collaboration. It may be time to investigate all the Animal Science events and use opportunities for closer interaction with the Animal Science industry.
Council would like to invite the different branches and members to become actively involved in the Society – the current website is due for renovations and ideas and inputs will be welcomed!
Mr J.C. (Hannes) Booysen, ex-honorary secretary of SASAS, passed away on the 7thof September 2017 at the age of 97. In 1978 Mr Booysen was seconded by his employer, Sentrachem, to take over, together with his normal duties, the secretariat of the then South African Society of Animal Production. At his retirement in 1986 Mr Booysen became the full-time secretary of the Society, a position that he held until April 1998. For these 20 years Mr Booysen was the cornerstone of stability for the Society since council members are elected for, at the most, two two-year terms. A eulogy will be placed on the SASAS website.
Continuing Professional Development
Professional animal scientists who attended the SASAS congress can request a CPD certificate for attendance. Please contact the Secretariat (email@example.com), and supply your SACNASP number and on which days you attended the congress.
Paid-up SASAS members can also request a CPD certificate (one credit) for being a member of SASAS for 2017. Please supply your SACNASP number.
Esté Van Marle-Köster
10 October 2017