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PQA Plus workshops for extension, veterinarians, ag educators

June 6, 2013 | 0 comments

The University of Wisconsin-Extension and the Wisconsin Pork Association will be hosting a series of workshops for Extension agents, veterinarians and ag educators to become PQA Plus Advisors.

Advisors are individuals who can certify pork producers in PQA Plus, and to assist producers in achieving site status in the program.

To become a PQA Plus advisor, individuals must first complete training in the program to obtain advisor status.

The national pork board will be rolling out their revised PQA Plus material at World Pork Expo in early June. All advisors will need to be certified at this time.

New material includes public health, environmental stewardship, worker safety, and tools for continual improvement.

The meeting dates and locations are as follows:

• Tuesday, June 25, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Room 103 Ag Center, UW-Extension Office, Eau Claire County, 227 1st Street West, Altoona; and

• Thursday, June 27, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Room 8-9 UW-Extension Office, Jefferson County, 864 Collins Road, Jefferson.

PQA Plus™ is the pork industry's on-farm quality assurance program encompassing food safety and animal well-being.

The program is the result of an industry coalition that sought to develop a workable, credible and affordable solution to assure food safety and animal care and at the same time meet the needs of customers including restaurants, food retailers and, ultimately, consumers.

With PQA Plus, pork producers have another tool to demonstrate that they are socially responsible.

To qualify to become a PQA Plus™ Advisor individuals must:

• Be a veterinarian, Extension specialist or ag educator (An ag educator is defined as a person who is a full-time adult educator or spends at least 50 percent of the time in production training);

• Have a B.S. or equivalent in Animal Science or associated field; and

• Have two years of recent, documentable swine production experience. (A combination of education and swine production experience may be considered satisfactory by the PQA Plus Trainer reviewing applications.)

PQA Plus™ Advisors must attend a PQA Plus™ Advisor training session and successfully pass an examination. QA Plus™ Advisor certification is good for three years.

More details about the PQA Plus program are available on the National Pork Board's Web site at www.pork.org or by calling Zen Miller at the Outagamie County UW-Extension at 920-832-5119.

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