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Nutrition Research Funding Program

Dairy Farmers of Canada has been funding research for over 30 years.  One of the first food industry’s to do so, Dairy Farmers of Canada is proud to support Canadian research in the areas of nutrition, food science and health and to contribute to the development of a Canadian network of experts in those fields.  Studies are selected by a peer-review committee comprised of renowned Canadian researchers with expertise in various areas of food science, nutrition, health and medicine.  Dairy Farmers of Canada funds research in order to respond to research gaps related to the role of dairy products in nutrition, health and sustainability.  All such research is subject to the Guiding Principles for Research Funding (outlined below) in order to ensure the quality and the independence of the research.

Guiding Principles for Research Funding

  • The research must be designed objectively according to accepted principles of scientific inquiry.  The research design should be based on clearly stated apriori hypotheses and must answer the appropriate questions, rather than favour a particular outcome.
  • Prior to the commencement of the research, the Principle Investigator and Dairy Farmers of Canada will enter into a written agreement that clearly outlines the responsibilities of both parties.
  • The Principle Investigator maintains control of all aspects of the research and data and has the final decision on the design and conduct of the research; the collection, management, analysis and interpretation of the data; and the preparation and approval of the peer-reviewed manuscript.
  • The Principle Investigator should use his/her best effort to obtain publication of the research findings in a timely manner irrespective of the outcome.
  • Dairy Farmers of Canada does not offer remuneration geared to the outcome of the project.
  • Full disclosure of all financial interests in a research project is required in all publications and presentations by researchers as well as by Dairy Farmers of Canada.
  • The Principle Investigator cannot participate in undisclosed paid authorship arrangements in Dairy Farmers of Canada-funded publications or presentations.
  • Human trials should be registered in a recognized registry (eg.

Research Priorities

DFC considers those applications that have nutritional and health implications for Canadian dairy products and are relevant to Canadian dairy farmers. Of specific interest to DFC are research proposals which feature milk products in their entirety, demonstrate technological innovation and utilize a multidisciplinary approach, whenever possible, to address fundamental and applied research questions. Applied human randomized, controlled trials and mechanistic studies in humans are of particular interest. Our current research priorities and areas of interest are as follows:

Role of dairy products, especially full-fat and specific dairy food matrices (milk, yogurt and cheese), on cardiometabolic health and healthy aging including:

  • Prevention of type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, hypertension, cardiovascular disease
  • Weight and body composition, satiety
  • Risk factors: blood lipids, blood pressure, glycemic control, inflammatory markers
  • Age-related chronic diseases

Role of sugar-sweetened milk and yogurt on diet quality and cardiometabolic health including:

  • Nutrient adequacy
  • Weight and body composition
  • Type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular disease

Role of dairy products, particularly milk, in musculoskeletal health including:

  • Muscle and bone quality
  • Prevention of sarcopenia, osteoporosis, falls and osteoporosis related fractures

Role of dairy products in a healthy sustainable diet (including plant-based diets):

  • Nutrient adequacy and healthy dietary patterns
  • Connection between nutrition and health with environmental and social aspects

Deadline for the Letter of Intent: December 1st, 2020

Click here for the LOI Form


Click here for guidelines


Please note that projects that refer to or involve the potential for a health claim should ensure compliance with Health Canada’s Guidance Documents for scientific substantiation of health claims. This includes projects related to satiety and postprandial glycemic control.

For more details, please consult Health Canada’s website at: 

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