Agricultural News: Upcoming Beef Quality Assurance Trainings

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   Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) is a program developed to ensure that beef and dairy cattle are managed in a manner that will result in safe and wholesome beef and milk products for the consumer. BQA is designed to enhance carcass quality by preventing drug residues and injection-site blemishes and bruises. Tennessee’s BQA Program is based on recommended national guidelines and scientific research; it aims to enable beef producers to enhance their product, maximize marketability, and strengthen consumer confidence. 

   The reason we offer BQA Certification is simple. Many buyers of feeder cattle are seeking out BQA Certified, source-verified calves. As a matter of fact, with some of the most highly regarded branded beef product lines, such as Nebraska Corn Fed Beef, the only cattle eligible for enrollment are BQA Certified calves. Tennessee BQA Certification opens up a market outlet for those who become “certified.” In addition to the certification, it enables the producer to be eligible to participate in the Tennessee Agriculture Enhancement Program (TAEP) through Tennessee Department of Agriculture (TDA), which has allowed producers to maximize farm profits, adapt to changing market situations, improve operation safety, increase farm efficiency, and make positive economic impact in our community.

   Due to COVID-10 and Social Distancing Guidelines established by CDC, class size will be limited to six (6) participants during each training to comply with social distancing guidelines. A COVID-19 screening before class will be conducted and masks are required. 

   We have several in-person BQA Trainings available in September. These trainings will be limited to Wayne County residents due to limited space.

   Upcoming in-person BQA Trainings are as follows:

•September 3rd at 9am, 1pm, or 6pm.

•September 4th at 1pm or 5:30pm

•September 5th at 9am or 12pm

•September 9th at 9 am, 12pm, or 2pm

•September 10th at 9am, 12pm, or 2pm

•September 14th at 6pm

•September 19th at 9am or 12pm

•September 21st at 6pm

   If in-person trainings do not work for your schedule or if you are uncomfortable with in-person trainings, we will be offering two virtual BQA sessions. There is not a limit on the number of participants for the virtual classes.

   Upcoming Virtual BQA Trainings are as follows:

•September 23rd at 12pm

•September 24th at 6pm

   Pre-registration for both in person and virtual trainings will be required. No walk-ins or drop-ins will be allowed for in-person or virtual trainings.

   E-mail Megan Harris at mdharris@utk.edu or call the office at 931-722-3229 in advance to confirm your attendance. 

   There is not a limit on the number of participants for the virtual classes. The online trainings will be offered via Zoom. If you’ve never used Zoom before, UT has resources to help you.  Please reach out to me if you need assistance.

   There is a fee associated with the BQA certification. You will receive those details when you call to confirm your attendance. Due to COVID-19, we can only accept checks. Checks should be made out to Tennessee Cattleman’s Association (TCA). You only have to attend one of the trainings to complete your BQA certification. You must have a current BQA to apply and qualify for TAEP Funds.

   Classes will be held at the UT Extension Wayne County Office (top floor of the courthouse). Again, please call or e-mail to reserve your spot for one of the in-person or virtual trainings.