Vet Training, Education & Leadership

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

bivi-shs-15-30-editedA look into veterinary training, education and leadership development was another topic discussed at the recent Boehringer Ingelheim Swine Health Seminar held in Orlando, FL. Dr. Jim Lowe, Lowe Consulting, headlined that conversation as he shared insights into making the animal health profession stronger for the future.

“I really need to credit my co-authors on this, Dr. Aldridge and Dr. Ferkins. We think we have to think about learning over a lifetime, not learning over while we are in school or in a given class. How do we create an education continuum? How do we create a different ecosystem to learn in? How do we create different teachers, different classes, different student thinkings so they come together.”

Dr. Lowe said there are three key elements to this methodology moving forward. They are: time, teaching and technology. One example of this is a flip classroom. They actually watch the lecture before they come to class via video and then come to class ready for discussion and do homework with the instructor. Student directive learning is also an important aspect to this learning process. Dr. Lowe added that a goal is to deliver education across a large time and space, drive cost down while keeping it easily available and relevant.

“As a consumer of education, we have to start to demand classes that teach us differently. How do they give us the skills we need, the competencies we need? We need to be able to think, problem solve and lead teams. Not just remember facts and regurgitate them.”

Listen to my complete interview with Dr. Lowe here: Interview with Dr. Jim Lowe, Lowe Consulting

Find all the photos from the event here: 2015 BIVI Swine Health Seminar Photo Album

Agribusiness, Animal Health, Audio, Boehringer Ingelheim, Education, Swine, Veterinary

Tyson Foods Donates Truckload of Chicken to Food Bank

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 9.25.12 AMTyson Foods, Inc., in conjunction with the Animal Agriculture Alliance’s College Aggies Online scholarship competition (CAO) and the University of Georgia Dairy Science Club, donated a load of protein to the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia, located in Athens, Georgia.

The 30,400 pound load of chicken, which will provide more than 120,000 servings of protein, arrived at the food bank. Representatives from Tyson Foods, the Alliance and the University of Georgia Dairy Club were present to help deliver the chicken.

The donation was the result of a challenge posed to this fall’s participants in the Alliance’s CAO program.

“We’re always looking for ways to raise awareness about the seriousness of hunger across the country,” said Tyson Foods’ director of social media Jack Pate. “And this is one of those events that does that, while meeting the immediate need of hunger that so many face.”

This past fall, participating student organizations were assigned a variety of challenges, including hosting a food drive on their college campuses. The University of Georgia’s Dairy Science Club collected over 250 pounds of food to win this year’s food drive challenge, earning a donation in their honor from CAO program sponsor Tyson Foods.

“Tyson Foods has a rich history of supporting hunger relief efforts nationwide,” said Kay Johnson Smith, Alliance president and CEO. “We are so proud that we were able to inspire this year’s CAO participants to give back to their local communities through Tyson’s sponsorship and involvement in the program.”

“We were grateful for the food that University of Georgia’s Dairy Science Club collected through their food drive, and are even more excited to receive this truckload of chicken from Tyson,” said John Becker, president and CEO of the Food Bank of Northeast Georgia. “We appreciate the club’s dedication to fighting hunger in our community and are very thankful to Tyson for their significant contribution.”

Ag Group, Animal Ag Alliance, Food

Beef Checkoff Unveils Veal Marketing Website

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 9.10.48 AMThe Beef Checkoff announced the launch of a new website, at The site is a mobile-friendly digital hub for all of the checkoff’s veal-foodservice marketing efforts. Visitors can search recipes by cuisine, cuts and/or menu and discover up-to-date nutrition information, cooking methods, seasonings/companions and featured chefs.

The site currently is hosting the “Win a Free Trip to the Center of Plate Training” Sweepstakes. The winner will receive a three-day trip to the Center of the Plate Training® Conference. The conference will be conducted in College Station, Texas on June 2–4, 2015, and will provide participants with detailed instruction in meat-cut specifications by demonstrating how carcasses are converted to cuts commonly used in retail and foodservice.

Ag Group, Beef, Beef Checkoff, Food, veal

Texas A&M Extension Conduct Sorghum Trials

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Silage-Field-Day Agronomists at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service have been conducting research trials on sorghum silage revealing the importance of identifying forage type and variety to optimize quantity and quality.

Dr. Jourdan Bell, AgriLife Extension agronomist in Amarillo, said the 2014 trials in Potter County under center pivot irrigation evaluated 90 forage sorghum silage varieties for optimal yield and quality.

Bell said because silage is in high demand by both feedyards and dairies in the High Plains, she and Dr. Ted McCollum, AgriLife Extension beef cattle specialist of Amarillo, are taking a closer look at what makes a difference in production outcomes, especially on sorghum silage.

“In many areas with declining well capacities, sorghum silages are a great alternative to corn silage,” Bell said. “Producers can achieve very good sorghum silage yields with about half the irrigation water requirement of corn silages.”

But, she said, not all sorghum silage varieties are created alike. There is great variability in yield and quality between varieties, which is why the AgriLife Extension variety trials are used by many producers as they make their variety selections.

“Variety selection is really key to achieving optimum yield and quality,” she said. “It is important to evaluate the different sorghums used for forage and silage production. When we discuss types, there are forage sorghums, sudangrasses and sorghum-sudangrasses.”

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Ag Group, Forage, sorghum

Enter New Holland’s Voice of the Next Gen Contest

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

nh-fglCountry music fans are invited to fire up their creativity and submit a 30-second video of a portion of FGL’s #1, PLATINUM smash “Dirt” for one of five chances to win an all-expense-paid trip for two to the award-winning duo’s concert at the Giant Center in Hershey, Pa. on May 2, 2015. The contest winners and their guests will also take part in an exclusive meet and greet with FGL’s Tyler Hubbard at New Holland’s Pennsylvania headquarters.

The Voice of the Next Gen contest is part of New Holland’s year-long 120th Anniversary bash, celebrating not just the accomplishments of the past, but looking forward with excitement to the next generation of New Holland SMART products, customers and dealers.

“The song ‘Dirt’ was selected for the contest because its lyrics reflect New Holland’s roots in agriculture and our strong ties to those who work the land,” says Mark Hooper, New Holland’s Director of Marketing in North America.

The Voice of the Next Gen contest is open to adults age 18 and older in the United States and Canada. Contestants are asked to submit a 30-second video of themselves performing a portion of FGL’s hit song “Dirt,” either a cappella or with the accompaniment of their own music.

The contest begins March 1, 2015 and all eligible entries must be submitted by midnight Eastern Time, March 22, 2015. The five Grand Prize winners will be selected from among the top 20 videos, as determined by the public through likes from March 23-30, 2015. Criteria for selecting the five winners will be based on originality, creativity, entertainment value and interpretation of New Holland’s Voice of the Next Gen theme. One winner from among the five Grand Prize winners will be awarded the “New Holland Voice of the Next Gen” title.

Agribusiness, contest, New Holland

Doing What is Right for the Pig

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

bivi-shs-15-25-editedAnimal welfare continues to be at the forefront of discussion throughout the swine community. And Dr. Angela Baysinger’s talk at Boehringer Ingleheim’s Swine Health Seminar hit on just that. Pig welfare and doing what is right for the pig centered discussion on crates and pain mitigation in castration and tail docking. I had a chance to speak with Dr. Baysinger following her presentation and before we got to the nitty gritty, we quickly bonded over our home state…Missouri.

“The swine industry has been changing since the time I started raising pigs in the 70’s. The pendulum has swung from outdoors to pen gestation to crates and now it is swinging back. Everything in life changes over time and we as a swine industry are just going to change and adapt to what we need to do, but it is what’s best for the pig that we need to keep focus on.”

Dr. Baysinger said many of the issues on the farm include getting the message to the barn and remembering changing doesn’t mean caving. She also said that people are the most important thing we tend to forget. People are the foundation for care of the pigs. People should feel empowered to speak when they see something wrong. Training and education are key and she adds that we need to remember that they aren’t simply hired hands anymore. The key is to have a better understanding of the world in which we operate.

Listen to my complete interview where she touches on the future and discusses some conversations she has had along the way to providing a better understanding of pig welfare to producers, vets and the consumer. Interview with Dr. Angela Baysinger, PIC

Find all the photos from the event here: 2015 BIVI Swine Health Seminar Photo Album

Agribusiness, Animal Health, Animal Welfare, Audio, Boehringer Ingelheim, Swine

U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef Formed

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Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 12.59.11 PMA group of U.S. beef value chain participants including producers, processors, retailers, foodservice operators, packers, allied industry and non-governmental organizations announced the launch of the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (USRSB). The multi-stakeholder roundtable will identify sustainability indicators, establish verification methodologies, and generate field project data to test and confirm sustainability concepts for use throughout the United States. The USRSB adopts an approach whereby social, economic and environmental considerations are balanced to achieve sustainable outcomes.

“Research tells us American consumers are increasingly interested in the social, economic and environmental impacts of the beef they purchase,” said Nicole Johnson-Hoffman, vice president of Cargill Value Added Meats and interim chair of USRSB. “For the first time, the entire U.S. beef value chain, including representatives who raise cattle and produce, market and sell beef, in addition to representatives from the NGO community and allied businesses, are coming together to establish metrics and criteria that will be used to benchmark the present and help measure improvements in the sustainability of American beef going forward.”

USRSB’s mission is to advance, support and communicate continuous improvement in U.S. beef sustainability through leadership, innovation, multi-stakeholder engagement and collaboration. Utilizing the definition for sustainable beef recently released by the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (GRSB), the USRSB will develop sustainability indicators relevant to the various beef systems in the United States, as well as a means to verify sustainable progress in a transparent manner that can be shared. Similar to GRSB, the USRSB will not mandate standards or verify the performance of individual beef value chain participants.

The USRSB is being directed by an interim board of directors that includes representatives from Cargill, Beef Marketing Group, Texas Cattle Feeders Association, Micro Technologies, Merck Animal Health, JBS USA, McDonald’s, Walmart, World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, Noble Foundation and the King Ranch® Institute for Ranch Management. Participation will be open to individual producers, producer associations, processors, retailers, foodservice operators, allied industry and civil society.

A complete list of members can be found here. Membership will be open to additional founding members until June 1, 2015.

Ag Group, Animal Health, Animal Welfare, Beef, sustainability

2015 BIVI PRRS Research Awards Announced

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

BIVI_288_logo.212131245_stdThe threat from new or evolving swine diseases reminds producers and veterinarians of the critical role ongoing research plays in helping find solutions to problems that reduce production and profitability. When it comes to porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS), time has proven there are no easy, simple or quick solutions.

For the past 12 years, the Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. (BIVI), Advancement in PRRS Research Awards has recognized and supported those who provide practical approaches to manage the disease.

Recently at the American Association of Swine Veterinarians (AASV) Conference in Orlando, BIVI announced the three recipients of its 2015 PRRS Research Awards. Including the three research awards for this year, the company has contributed nearly $1 million to fund 40 separate PRRS research projects.

This year, BIVI awarded a total of $75,000 to support three separate projects by independent swine disease researchers and practitioners.

From the many PRRS research proposals submitted for the 2015 awards consideration, the three following award recipients were selected and recognized at the March AASV Conference in Orlando:

Dr. Robert Morrison, DVM, Ph.D., University of Minnesota – A research project to evaluate the impact of PRRSv immune status at time of infection on time to stability (TTS) and time to baseline production (TTBP) in infected sow herds.

Dr. Beatriz Martinez Lopez, DVM, Ph.D., University of California, Davis – A study to evaluate the role of direct (i.e. animal contact) and indirect (i.e. airborne) transmission of different PRRSv genotypes within and between different swine production systems in the US.

Dr. Laura Greiner, Ph.D., M.S., Carthage Innovative Swine Solutions – A study to understand the actions and implications of people during unloading at lairage on PRRS/PEDV contamination of swine transportation equipment.

The three research proposals were selected based on established criteria that included potential for economic impact to the swine industry; originality and scientific quality; and probability of success in completing the study.

Agribusiness, Animal Health, award, Boehringer Ingelheim, PRRS, Research, Swine

EggLand’s Best Overhauls Website

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 8.45.14 AMEggland’s Best recently tapped New Jersey-based digital marketing agency Revolution Digital to rejuvenate their website. After winning a competitive RFP process by staying true to Eggland’s Best goals and values, the agency was asked to bring a bright and fresh look to their site that highlights the eggs as better tasting and nutritionally superior than ordinary eggs.

The Revolution Digital team did an end-to-end overhaul of the existing website using research gathered through targeted focus groups to create an interface that evokes feelings of classic Americana, food, family, and fun. The agency used a clean white background to underscore the premium quality and freshness of each Eggland’s Best egg, and prominently featured the brand’s social media outlets on the home page to set the tone for consumer engagement.

Agribusiness, Eggs, Poultry

Gelbvieh Association Elects 2015 Board of Directors

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 8.18.57 AMMembers of the American Gelbvieh Association (AGA) elected five candidates to serve three-year terms on the AGA Board of Directors. The election was held during the annual membership meeting at the AGA Annual Convention Impacting the Beef Business™ with Maternal Influence, Saturday, January 10, 2015.

Newly elected board members are Dustin Rippe, Hubbell, Nebraska and Lowell Rogers, Seminary, Mississippi. Re-elected to serve second terms were Andy LeDoux, Agenda, Kansas; Neal Pearson, Lake City, South Dakota; and Duane Strider, Asheboro, North Carolina.

The Board of Directors then elected individuals to serve in leadership positions on the 2015 AGA Executive Committee. Neal Pearson was selected to be the 30th president of the American Gelbvieh Association. He succeeds Past President Rob Arnold, Minot, North Dakota.

Elected as vice president was Dan Warner, Beaver City, Nebraska. Duane Strider was elected as secretary and Grant Thayer, Ramah, Colorado, will serve as treasurer.

The other members of the AGA Board of Directors are: Brian Dunn, St. John, Kansas; Emily Griffiths, Kendallville, Indiana; Bob Hart, Kansas City, Kansas; David Martin, Judsonia, Arkansas; Ronnie Rogers, Mendon, Missouri; Scott Starr, Stapleton, Nebraska; Walter Teeter, Mt. Ulla, North Carolina and Gary Tilghman, Glasgow, Kentucky.

Retiring members of the 2014 AGA Board of Directors were Rob Arnold, Minot, North Dakota and Bob Prosser, Winslow, Arizona. Arnold and Prosser each served two consecutive three year terms and their dedication and service to the association is appreciated by many.

Ag Group, Beef, Breeds, Gelbvieh