‘Fuel Greatness’ Grows School Breakfast Awareness

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FUTP60logoFuel Up to Play 60, the nation’s largest in-school health and wellness program, will launch “Fuel Greatness” to grow awareness about the importance of school breakfast to students and school leaders.

The effort aims to elevate the conversation around good nutrition and physical activity with a focus on increasing participation and access to breakfast – including dairy – to ensure students begin their day with the fuel they need. Fuel Greatness is being done during National School Breakfast Week (March 2-6) and will include nationwide school events conducted by local dairy checkoff staffs.

Fuel Up to Play 60 has contributed significantly to overall breakfast expansion in schools. More than 2 million more students participating in the program are eating breakfast since 2010. Average daily participation at breakfast increased during this time from 23 percent to 27 percent among Fuel Up to Play 60 schools.

“Starting the day off right by eating breakfast with nutritious foods such as dairy is crucial for students, but we know that many are not eating this important meal,” said Paul Rovey, Arizona dairy farmer and chair of Dairy Management Inc.™, which manages the national dairy checkoff. “Fuel Greatness helps remind all of us about the importance of breakfast to students’ success.”

Research shows that improved nutrition, including daily breakfast, and increased physical activity can lead to improved academic performance. Eating breakfast at school can help kids be more attentive, behave better and achieve higher test scores, but millions of kids are skipping it. No Kid Hungry’s annual “Hunger in Our Schools” report identified that 76 percent of educators say students come to school hungry.

The Food Research and Action Center’s (FRAC) School Breakfast Scorecard noted that 13.2 million children ate school breakfast during the 2013-14 school year. While participation is increasing, traditional breakfast programs often encounter challenges such as scheduling restrictions and cafeteria capacity.

Ag Group, Dairy Checkoff, Education, fuel up to play 60

World Dairy Expo Announces New Board Leadership

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world dairy expoWorld Dairy Expo held its annual Board of Director and Committee Meetings March 2 and 3 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wis. Major stakeholder groups from across North America provided input and policy guidance for future Expos.

World Dairy Expo is pleased to announce new leadership for its Executive Committee. Newly elected board members include Alan Deming, President; Bill Hageman Jr., 1st Vice President; Debbie Crave, 2nd Vice President; Mike Hellenbrand, Secretary/Treasurer and Finance Committee Chair; Dean Hermsdorf, Commercial Exhibitor Committee Chair; Tom Morris, Dairy Cattle Exhibitor Committee Chair; Steve Larson, At-Large Director; Mike Holschbach, At-Large Director; Jeff Lyon, Ex-Officio and Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP); and Scott Bentley, General Manager.

New members of the Board of Directors include Cliff Becker, representing Official Program publisher, Farm Journal/Dairy Today; Troy Esser, representing BouMatic and Courtney Booth, representing the Purebred Breeders of World Dairy Expo.

World Dairy Expo also announced recently elected Commercial Exhibitor Committee members, Stefanie Bradley, ANIMART, Inc.; Lori Bocher, US Dairy Forage Research Council; Taylor Weisensel, Ag-Bag; Joe Coburn, The Coburn Company; Amanda Hannes, Cooperative Resources International; and Jenny Eighmy, Y-Tex Corporation. Dean Hermsdorf, ABS Global, was re-elected Commercial Exhibitor Committee Chair while Jane Griswold, Hoard’s Dairyman, was re-elected Vice Chair.

Expo welcomed Corey Geiger, Hoard’s Dairyman, as Youth Contest Representative to the Dairy Cattle Exhibitor Committee. Tom Morris, Tom Morris, Ltd., was re-elected Dairy Cattle Exhibitor Committee Chair. Bryan Voegeli was elected again to serve as Vice Chair.

Ag Group, Cattle, Dairy, World Dairy Expo

Meat Industry Hall of Fame Seeks Candidates

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Meat Industry Hall of FameThe Meat Industry Hall of Fame is requesting nominations for Members of the Class of 2015. Eligible candidates must meet three key qualifications:

– Candidates must have spent a significant portion of their professional careers in an industry-related field (animal agriculture, food processing, government, academia, retail)
– Candidates must have contributed significant innovation, achieved notable business success or otherwise positively impacted their organization, institution or larger industry segment
– Candidates must have successfully undertaken significant community service or philanthropy

To nominate someone who’s worthy of membership in the Meat Industry Hall of Fame, simply request a nomination form by contacting Chuck Jolley at Chuck@MeatIndustryHallofFame.com or +1 913.205.3791.

A list of qualified candidates will be assembled and ballots will be sent to our Board and Members of the Meat Industry Hall of Fame on April 16. Their votes will be tallied and six new members will be announced on May 18.

Ag Group, Meat

Send In Nominations for 2015 Reproduction Awards

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DCRC-LogoThe Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council (DCRC) announces that the 2015 Reproduction Awards program, which recognizes outstanding dairy operations for reproductive efficiency and well-implemented management procedures is now open. Nominations are now being accepted for the 2015 program.

Dairy operations must be nominated by professionals who serve the dairy industry, such as veterinarians, extension agents, A.I. and pharmaceutical company representatives, plant and co-op field staff, consultants and others. Nomination forms are due by April 30 and may be completed online or mailed to the following address:

1800 S. Oak St., Suite 100
Champaign, IL 61820

Judges will review applications and select the top herds, who will be asked to provide additional information about their operation. This information will help the judges select Platinum, Gold, Silver and Bronze winners. Award recipients will be honored at the 2015 DCRC Annual Meeting in Buffalo, New York from November 11 – 13, 2015.

Ag Group, award, Cattle, Dairy

NCC Responds to McDonald’s New Antibiotic Policy

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nccThe National Chicken Council (NCC) has released the following statement on the announcement of McDonald’s new antibiotic policy attributable to Ashley Peterson, Ph.D., National Chicken Council vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs:

“The top priority of farmers and chicken companies is to raise healthy chickens, because healthy chickens are directly related to a safe food supply. Responsible, FDA-approved veterinary treatment and prevention benefits animal welfare and human health by reducing the need for increased doses of antibiotics of human importance in the event of widespread disease.

“The vast majority of these antibiotics are never used in humans. McDonald’s, veterinarians and animal scientists recognize their importance to minimize the use of those antibiotics that are important in human medicine.

“Chicken producers have a vested interest in protecting the effectiveness of antibiotics, for the welfare of their animals; as such, we’ve proactively and voluntarily taken steps toward finding alternative ways to control disease while reducing antibiotic use. For almost two years, chicken producers have been working with the FDA, farmers and veterinarians to phase out the use of antibiotics that are important in human medicine for growth promotion purposes in animals.

“While antibiotics that are important to human medicine are minimally used when raising chickens, by December 2016 under FDA guidance, these antibiotics will be labeled for use in food animals only to prevent disease and treat sick birds, and will be used exclusively under the supervision and prescription of a veterinarian.

“Chicken producers are in the business of providing choice, are committed to innovation and producing a wide range of chicken products for a wide range of consumers.”

Ag Group, Chicken, Food, Poultry

Biggest Bee Keeping Invention Since 1852

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Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 2.35.28 PMThe Flow™ Hive, a revolutionary beehive invention allowing the harvesting of honey without opening the hive and thus, limiting the stress on the bees, launched an Indiegogo campaign that has already broken records on the world’s largest crowdfunding platform. The sweet campaign raised $2.18M in the first day, breaking the record for most funds raised in the first 24 hours. It took 477 seconds for the campaign to reach its goal of $70,000.

“In this modern world of limited natural habitat, beekeepers have become vital carers of bee colonies,” said Cedar Anderson, Co-inventor of Flow Hive. “Our goal is that Flow Hive will encourage thousands more people to become advocates of bees and become more aware of the threats facing not only bees, but the matrix of life.”

The Flow Hive marks the biggest change in honey collection and beekeeping equipment in more than 150 years and has enormous implications for amateur and commercial beekeeping. The father and son design team from Australia, Stuart and Cedar Anderson, have been working on a simplified method of honey collection for a decade, and for the past three years have been field testing their Flow Hive design. The invention has been tested and proven to work by amateur and professional beekeepers alike in Australia and around the world and is now ready to manufacture on a larger scale.

Co-inventor, Stuart Anderson said, “We have been completely blown away by the support thus far on the Indiegogo platform, and we hope our invention will create awareness and a community of beekeepers around the world that will harvest in a bee friendly way.”

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Agribusiness, Animal Welfare, bees, Food

Register for A Challenge for Tomorrow Seminar by Zoetis

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zoetisRegistration is open for A Challenge for Tomorrow, a seminar offered at no charge by Zoetis. This special discussion about the future of food is taking place as a breakfast session during the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) Midwest Section meeting. The session will start at 7:00 a.m. on Wednesday, March 18, 2015, at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center in Des Moines, Iowa.

This symposium is ideal for pork industry professionals who want to be more engaged in the conversation about food safety and security.

A Challenge for Tomorrow will feature Glynn Tonsor, PhD, associate professor and Extension specialist, Department of Agricultural Economics, Kansas State University. Dr. Tonsor knows the pork industry well. He grew up on a farrow-to-finish farm in Missouri before studying agribusiness and agricultural economics at Missouri State University and Kansas State University, respectively. Dr. Tonsor has studied and speaks about a variety of food industry topics, such as the meat supply chain, economics, food safety, consumer demand and technology acceptance.

“As consumers are further removed from agriculture, we need to be fully transparent, explain what we do to provide affordable, safe food and engage with them via the communication platforms they are utilizing today,” said Gloria Basse, vice president, U.S. Pork Business, Zoetis. “Zoetis is pleased to facilitate Dr. Tonsor’s message to inspire Midwest ASAS attendees to look at their actions in a new light.”

Agribusiness, Animal Health, Swine

Vet Training, Education & Leadership

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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

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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

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Screen Shot 2015-03-04 at 9.10.48 AMThe Beef Checkoff announced the launch of a new website, at VealFoodservice.com. 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