February 2022

The official newsletter of Kentucky's Beef Industry.

The Kentucky Beef Network and University of Kentucky Extension are pleased to announce that they will be extending the free Beef Quality and Care Assurance (BQCA) certifications through February 28, 2022.
The Kentucky BQCA program takes national BQA practices one step further to provide a holistic program for Kentucky producers, by adding cattle handling and animal care component to the training models. Educational modules provide the best management practices for handling cattle and providing for their well-being, in addition to training on the core principles of BQA.

After February 28, 2022 the cost of BQCA enrollment will be $5 for in person training through local county extension offices with online training increasing to $10. The National BQA online training program at www.bqa.org also offers free enrollment.

Producers interested in taking advantage of this opportunity can visit www.kybeefnetwork.com before February 28, 2022 can access to the online training platform or contact their county extension office for training opportunities. “We are very excited for this partnership for our Kentucky cattlemen to continue to tell their story to consumers through sound management practices,” says Kevin Laurent University of Kentucky Co-BQCA Coordinator. 
The 2022 Mid-South Stocker Conference will challenge producers to take a broad view of their operations from the comfort of their homes. Due to the pandemic, the conference is taking place online with the theme “Grass to Cash: Forage Opportunities for Stocker Cattle.”

The conference is an annual event, a partnership of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment and the University of Tennessee. This year, the free conference is 12 to 2:45 p.m. EST Feb. 23.

Interested individuals can find more information and register at https://midsouthstockerconference.utk.edu/. After registration, participants will receive instructions for how to connect to the event. The Mid-South Stocker Conference helps operators explore ideas for efficient and healthy cattle production and helps define stocker production’s role in a rapidly evolving cattle industry to effectively meet consumer expectations.

Baleage can help forage producers preserve the quality of all forages better than harvesting them as hay. This includes high quality alfalfa. During the upcoming 41st Kentucky Alfalfa and Stored Forage Conference, University of Kentucky forage specialists, Kentucky farmers and featured industry speaker Jessica Williamson will share how more forage producers can begin incorporating baleage into their operation. 

Educational presentations will include information on silage fermentation and additives, species and variety options, harvest timing and moisture determination, mowing and conditioning, insects, bale density and time of wrapping, and Kentucky farmer results using round baled silage. During a panel discussion, Williamson and Warren County producer Craig Cohron, will share their experiences making high quality baleage. 

Individuals may preregister for the conference at http://www.kyalfalfa2022.eventbrite.com. Those who register before Feb. 17 may receive a discounted rate of $35. After Feb. 17, registration increases to $45. For an additional $15, participants can join the Kentucky Forage and Grassland Council. Those without internet access may mail registration and a check made payable to KFGC to Jimmy Henning, N-222D Agricultural Science Center North, University of Kentucky, Lexington, KY 40546-0091.  

The UK Forages website, https://forages.ca.uky.edu/ has additional information about the event. 
Jimmy Henning, jimmy.henning@uky.edu; Ray Smith, raysmith1@uky.edu; Chris Teutschchris.teutsch@uky.edu
Checkin' on the Checkoff
One of our goals is to reach consumers in such a way that promotes greater beef consumption. Here's a glimpse at one of our digital ads used leading up to the Super Bowl game!
Happening at Eden Shale Farm

"This month I want to showcase one of the winter feeding structures that we use at the farm. The Barn Alley Feeder is a self feeding hay storage facility that was created by renovating an old tobacco barn. After tobacco production left Eden Shale, the barn was primarily used for extra storage. This barn is located on a 25-acre endophyte free fescue hay field, just around the corner from another winter feeding area which contains the Large Bale Feeder. Unfortunately, there is not enough space at the large bale feeder to accommodate the entire herd..." (excerpt from 2/15 blog post)
Youth Activities

Scholarship Requirements:
  • You must be a graduate from a Kentucky public, private, charter or homeschools in the year of application.
  • Be enrolled and attending an institute of higher education after graduation.
  • Planning to major in Agriculture or an Agriculturally-related subject.
  • Applicant or their parent or guardian must be a member of the Kentucky Cattlemen's Association.
For more information contact Nikki Whitaker at the KCA office:
859-278-0899 or 176 Pasadena Drive, Lexington, KY 40503
The Grayson County Junior Cattlemen’s Association invited KJCA Advisor Bradon Burks to speak at their meeting. Bradon discussed the importance of being a beef advocate, how to showcase that to others, as well as some leadership skills that members would benefit from. He also discussed his background and how being involved in youth development programs, like the KJCA, would benefit them greatly in the future. If you know of a County KJCA that would like to have a guest speaker, feel free to contact Bradon via email at bburks@kycattle.com.

If interested in joining KJCA, please call the office at 859-278-0899. Stay up to date with all things KJCA via Social Media @kyjuniorcattlemen on Facebook and @kyjrcattlemen on Instagram.
The YARDS Classroom
The YARDS Classroom has started to book more groups in the past few weeks, and we are excited to host more. A visit is at zero cost to participants, which includes a lesson on various beef topics, such as the Basics of Beef, and the Kentucky Beef Industry. No matter if attendees have a beef background or not, lessons are designed to reach all participants. The visit also includes a tour of Blue Grass Stockyards. Contact Bradon Burks for more information on what a trip to the YARDS might look like for your group via email at bburks@kycattle.com.
In The News
The YARDS Visitors
What's happening with Beef at Retail? These monthly articles leverage scanner data and other sources to inform retailers and other channel audiences on key beef industry trends and measures at retail. The topics may vary by month. We welcome your feedback, and if you are interested in a specific topic, please let us know by contacting BeefNewsNow@beef.org
Pictured above: The Shelby County Family and Consumer Science Classes visited The YARDS Classroom this month at the Bluegrass Stockyards.
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