The pilot program aims to improve beef cattle W.Va.

Cattle on pasture.

CHARLESTON, West Virginia – The West Virginia Department of Agriculture has announced a pilot project to increase the value of West Virginia cattle by improving the vigor of cattle before they enter production lines.

The project will examine the available preconditioning methods, improving the overall health of the herd, the use of electronic identification tags and the use of a unified approach with producer engagement. The project is a joint effort between the WVDA and the West Virginia University Extension Service.

The pilot project will focus on the use of established beef quality assurance standards, or BQA, and on encouraging the certification of producers and herds through educational seminars led by experts in the field. matter.

These seminars will focus on a wide range of topics related to beef cattle production, including electronic identification of cattle, the importance of improving traceability and accuracy of record keeping, testing targets for production cattle diseases, how to increase biosecurity opportunities for emergency preparedness and disease prevention and other potential herd management elements.

“The idea for the pilot project arose out of presentations and discussions at Commissioner Leonhardt’s annual livestock market meeting in May,” said State Veterinarian James Maxwell. “Stakeholders have focused a lot on how to increase consumer demand, as well as growing industry trends requiring that beef products only come from producers or herds certified by beef quality assurance. . “

Targeted sampling and seminars are scheduled to begin in July at the Jackson County Regional Livestock Market. Jackson County Regional Livestock Market owner Roger Mitchell, who is also president of the West Virginia Livestock Market Association, offered to host the pilot after discussions in May.

If the pilot is successful, it could be expanded to other approved tagging sites, livestock markets and other areas of the state.

For any questions or interest in this project, contact the Animal Health Division of the WVDA at 304-558-2214.


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