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Consumers want to know where and how their food is produced. The University of Wisconsin-Extension will host the annual Dairy and Beef Well-Being Conference on March 11 at UW-Platteville and Pioneer Farm in Platteville.

Since consumer confidence is a critical piece of food production, this year's conference will focus on educating consumers and animal care practices. Dairy and beef producers, veterinarians, farm service providers, educators, emergency managers, first responders and elected officials are encouraged to attend. Youth are also encouraged to attend as this will be the first conference to offer a youth track with hands-on and interactive activities by conference speakers.

The keynote speaker will be Wanda Patsche, of Minnesota Farm Living, a blog working to connect consumers to the farmers and people who grow their food. She will be addressing how to share your story with consumers with a presentation entitled, Building Your Ag Story Through Social Media.

In addition, Ron Gill who is widely known as a pioneer in animal handling and stockmanship, will be on hand for a demonstration with live animals.

Additional speakers will include the following:

·WI Beef Council, Inc. representative discussing quality assurance

·Dr. Katy Proudfoot, animal welfare & bahvior extension specialist, The Ohio State University, covering cow comfort and transition

·Livestock Stewardship: The Puzzle of the People - Heidi Carroll, Extension Livestock Stewardship associate, South Dakota State University

·design & management of Humane Animal Handling Facilities – David Kammel, Biological Systems Engineering, UW-Madison

·Dr. Sandy Stuttgen & Dr. Sarah Mills-Lloyd, UW-Extension, discussing pain management in youngstock

The conference will be held at UW-Platteville, 1313 Markee Pioneer Student Center, Platteville. Early bird registration for both adults and youth is $45 before Feb. 19th. After Feb. 19th, general registration is $55.

This program has been approved for continuing education credits for veterinary practitioners, veterinary technicians and humane officers. Also, Beef/Dairy Beef Quality Assurance and the American Registry for Professional Animal Scientists credits will be offered.

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