Iowa State receives $2 million for turkey research

The Iowa State University Department of Animal Science has received commitments of more than $2 million in private donations for Iowa State University’s new Turkey Teaching and Research Facility.

A groundbreaking was recently held for the facility, which will be constructed north of the Robert T. Hamilton Poultry Teaching and Research Farm, located south of the Iowa State campus on 520th Avenue.

The Turkey Teaching and Research Facility will provide a living classroom for students to experience hands-on learning in modern production practices, and flexible space and state-of-the-art equipment for research that addresses current challenges facing the turkey industry. It will also offer benefits beyond Iowa State, from outreach, continuing education and peer-to-peer opportunities for professionals in the industry, to observation areas where visitors, including schoolchildren, can see first-hand examples of turkey production systems and learn about turkey production. When complete, the facility will be the only one of its kind focused on turkey production at a major university.

The turkey facility is a university-industry partnership that will be fully funded through contributions from industry partners and private donors.

Iowa’s turkey industry is one of the largest in the United States, ranking seventh in turkey production and raising approximately 12 million turkeys annually. The industry supports over 38,000 total jobs and is responsible for more than $10 billion annually in economic activity throughout Iowa. Iowa State University plays a critical role in preparing professionals for Iowa’s poultry industries. Poultry science has been part of the university’s curriculum for over a century, and the university has one of the world’s strongest research programs in poultry genetics, breeding, nutrition and management.