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Fairfield Ledger   Mt. Pleasant News
Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 20, 2017

Beef feedlot assessment field days scheduled in Eastern Iowa

Jun 27, 2017

Vinton -- Beef producers in eastern Iowa are invited to learn about the process of completing the BQA Feedyard Assessment at one of three field days offered through Iowa State University Extension and Outreach this summer. The feedyard assessment is a review of employee training, standard operating procedures (SOP), record keeping, animal health protocols, handling practices, and equipment/facility maintenance, plus a tool to identify areas of potential risk or opportunities for improvement. It is also the foundation of the third-party audits required by Tyson Fresh Meats’ FarmCheck program. Cargill has announced it will require a similar audit system in 2018.

“The purpose of these field days is to educate feedlot operators on how to complete the Beef Quality Assurance feedyard self-assessment,” said Denise Schwab, ISU Extension & Outreach beef specialist. “At each location, we’ll score the processing area for working cattle, bunk and water management, animal and pen cleanliness, and discuss the importance of a veterinary-client-patient relationship.” Participants will also be certified in the Beef Quality Assurance program.

Doug Bear, director of industry relations for the Iowa Beef Industry Council, tells beef producers “By participating in the Iowa Beef Quality Assurance Feedyard Assessment, you are positioning your business to take advantage of the opportunities that lie ahead to ensure a safe, wholesome and quality beef and beef products for consumers. You are taking positive action to demonstrate that cattle producers are concerned about the product they produce as well as the live animals in their care.“

Each field day begins at 10 a.m. and lasts for an hour. Schwab encouraged people to preregister by calling the Benton County Extension office at 319-472-4739 to ensure adequate supplies for all attendees.

Field day dates and locations are: July 11, Ron Carpenter feedlot, 2424 10th St, Lamont, with Dr. Jeremy Johnson and Tom Robinson; July 12, Justin Reiter feedlot, 28598 9th Ave., Bernard, with Dr. Phil Reemtsma and Dave Rueber; and July 25, Ryan Jargo feedlot, 4201 120th St. Clinton, with Dr. Mike Slattery and Dave Rueber.

ISU Extension and Outreach beef program specialist Denise Schwab said these Beef Feedlot Assessment Field Days are provided in partnership with the Iowa Beef Industry Council, and local veterinarians and beef nutritionists.

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