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"Experientia docet" - Experience is the best teacher

SASAS Mission & Objectives

The objectives of the Society

The objectives of the Society are to promote animal science by:

  1. Ensuring that high standards of education, research, technology and science-based public policy are upheld with regard to animal production and animal products;
  2. Upholding professional integrity and ethical codes;
  3. Fostering the scientific interests and professional status of members;
  4. Organizing symposia on a regular basis;
  5. Publishing a scientific journal;
  6. Serving as mouthpiece on all matters relating to animal production and animal products in compliance with public welfare and general interests;

SASAS History - Summary

The South African Society for Animal Science (SASAS) was formerly known as the South African Society of Animal Production (SASAP). The Society was founded on April 28, 1961. However, the idea of establishing a South African association was conceived some years before that, when the late Wim Verbeek and Danie Joubert (both Ph.D. students at the time) met in a tea room in Petty Cury Lane, Cambridge, on September 21, 1954. With the aid of the late Drs FN Bonsma and Gideon N Louw, the foursome formulated the first objectives and statutes and prepared the way that eventually lead to the foundation meeting.

True to our slogan, Experiencia docet, our mission is to advance animal science and promote viable animal production systems, while sustaining natural resources and the environment and thereby to serve in the interests of human welfare. The emphasis and focus are on relevant issues pertaining to the southern African region. The scope of our interests includes all facets of the husbandry of farm livestock species (cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, poultry, ostriches and horses) including the products derived from them (meat, milk and dairy products, wool, mohair, leather and eggs) as well as relevant aspects of aquatic and wildlife species. The main disciplines of interest are nutrition, genetics, physiology, meat science, wool science and pasture science. Sociological and managerial aspects of well-defined livestock production and farming systems are also of interest.

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Dr FN Bonsma was the first chairman of the Society and MJ Joubert the first honorary president. In 1962 Dr Danie Joubert became the first editor of the Society’s Proceedings which, in 1971, acquired the status of a professional journal entitled the South African Journal of Animal Science.

The professional interest of Animal Scientists has been a primary concern of the Society since its foundation. SASAP members were instrumental in the establishment of the Liaison Committee for Professional Societies concerned with Agriculture and the Joint Council of Scientific Societies, as well as in the establishment of the South African Council of Natural Scientists (currently known as the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions or SACNASP). Although the latter body registered animal scientists since 1982, it wasn’t until 1993 when a group of SASAS members founded the South African Association of Professional Animal Scientists, an association whose first concern is the professional interest of animal scientists and to ensure professional service to clients.

During 2000, the name of the Society was changed to the South African Society for Animal Science. During the same year, SASAS saw the birth of its website and the first issue of the electronic version of the South African Journal of Animal Science. “Going on-line” took our Journal to the world and resulted in a dramatic increase in our readership.

Yes, our Society has gone from strength to strength, but thanks to the excellent foundation work of a few men that had a vision back in the fifties, not much has changed in terms of our objectives and constitution. We honour their memory, we learn from their experience, and our slogan remains Experientia docet!

SASAS History - Index

The history of our Society is well documented and will no doubt be dusted off and brought up-to-date in 2012 when the 50th anniversary should be celebrated. However, those of us who were founder members in 1961, are now getting long in the tooth and many have, to our sorrow, already departed to better pastures. Therefore I am taking the initiative of supplying the President with a few notes, all from memory and nothing from formal CVs, on some of the leaders who have already passed away but who made such outstanding contributions, not only to our Society but to livestock production and the agricultural industry in southern Africa.

Personalities of the Past:

The History of the Society and its leaders by F J van der Merwe.

The list of Former Presidents and Honorary Presidents of the Society

Branches & Interest Groups

Past Editors

Proceedings of the South African Society of Animal Production

1961 – 1964  D.M. Joubert
1965  G.O. Harwin
1966  P.J.S. Pieterse
1967 – 1969  H.S. Hofmeyr
1970  J.D. Skinner

South African Journal of Animal Science

1971-1974 J.D. Skinner
1975-1976 R.T. Naudé
1977-1978 W.D. Basson
1979-1981 A.W. Lishman
1982-1983 E.H. Kemm
1984-1988 R.I. Mackie
1989-1999 J.G. van der Walt
2000-2001 P.B. Cronjé
2002-2016 J.B.J. van Ryssen
Sept 2016-Feb 2018 V. Muchenje
March 2018- July’19 J.B.J van Ryssen
August 2019 – M.D. MacNeil

Popular Scientific publication SA-ANIM SCI

2000 -2007 – J.B.J. van Ryssen

Applied Animal Husbandry & Rural Development

2008-2014 – N.B. Nengovhela
2015-date – B.D Nkosi

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