Animal nutrition company Alltech announced that it is awarding its 2010 Medal of Excellence to University of Illinois researcher Jim Pettigrew for his groundbreaking research in the area of food production. The award will be presented at Alltech’s 26th International Animal Health and Nutrition Symposium, which takes place at the Lexington Convention Center May 16-19, 2010.

 Pettigrew has a doctorate in animal nutrition from the University of Illinois. During seventeen years as a faculty member in animal nutrition at the University of Minnesota, he researched the connections between nutrition and reproduction, leading the development of the first mathematical model of pig metabolism, with a focus on the lactating sow.

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He joined the University of Illinois faculty in 2001. His current research emphasizes connections between diet and health, with special attention to gut bacteria. “Professor Pettigrew has produced pioneering solutions looking at how the food producing industry can reduce its dependence on grains, corn and soya diets and instead utilize alternative materials as a viable diet for protein production,” said Pearse Lyons, Alltech’s president.

 Pettigrew has served as president of the Midwest section of the American Society of Animal Science, and was a member of the National Research Council subcommittee that produced the 10th Edition of Nutrient Requirements of Pigs. He served on a World Health Organization panel to evaluate the termination of antimicrobial growth promoters in Denmark. He supports the National Pork Board through membership on the Pork Safety Committee, the Non-Antibiotic Production Enhancers Committee and the Antibiotic Use Decision-Tree Group.