2013 is a landmark year as we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the Agricultural Technology Research Program (ATRP) here at Georgia Tech. As I have reflected back on 40 years of ATRP research activities, it is remarkable to see how much technology has changed and how the poultry industry has adapted. Early research efforts in noise abatement, energy efficiency, automation, information technology, worker safety, and sensing all contributed to the remarkable growth of the industry. ATRP’s role in supporting the poultry industry was also highlighted by Gary Black, commissioner of the Georgia Department of Agriculture, and Abit Massey, president emeritus of the Georgia Poultry Federation, in remarks made during the recent 40th Anniversary Celebration (see article on page 1). Both of them made the case that ATRP is an investment in agriculture, and as we look toward the future, there are significant challenges on the horizon that will require continued deposits in research and development. The true strength of this industry-focused program over the past 40 years has been the unwavering support of and true collaboration with our industry stakeholders and university and agency partners. The next 40 years will require a rededication to further integrate efforts between the engineering and science disciplines from multiple institutions as we jointly tackle the complex challenges that will lead to a resilient future for the poultry industry and agriculture. Here’s to another 40 years of excitement and adventure for ATRP!
Doug Britton, Ph.D.
ATRP Program Manager