The first day of the Iowa Cattlemen's Association 2012 Annual Convention will be jam-packed with information Iowa cattle producers can take home and put to use immediately. The convention, which is set for December 10-12 at the Prairie Meadows Events Center in Altoona, starts off with Cattlemen's College on Monday, December 10. Anyone who is interested in cattle production is encouraged to attend.
The centerpiece of the Cattlemen's College is a workshop that will serve both the feedyard cattle producer, as well as those producers who are in the cow-calf business. Low-stress cattle handling is an important part in both production systems because it assures consumers that cattle are being well-treated while they are being handled in a manner that produces the best quality beef from that animal.
Curt Pate, an internationally known stocksmanship clinician, will conduct the workshop twice. One session will be specifically targeted to cow-calf producers, and the other for feedyard cattle operators. All cattlemen and cattle women participating in the workshop will receive Beef Quality Assurance Certification.
Insight and future opportunities cattle producers can gain through BQA program
Another session for all producers will be lunchtime speaker Dr. Dan Thomson of Doc Talk on RFD-TV. Thomson will discuss the interpretations of the Beef Quality Assurance Program practices by consumers. He'll provide insight into current and future opportunities cattle producers can gain through enhancements to the BQA program.
Cattlemen's College, which is sponsored by Pfizer Animal Health, has two separate tracks. Feedyard operators will hear speakers address bottom line feedlot efficiencies, and how various strategies can maximize growth and performance of not only the cattle currently at the bunk, but those placed in the future, too. Another session in this track will look at verification programs that can add more value to cattle, especially when looking at the global market.
Pasture improvement information will be offered for cow-calf producers
Pasture quality will certainly be a concern for those beef producers in the cow-calf track. In cooperation with the Iowa Forage and Grasslands Council, Professor Rob Kallenbach, a University of Missouri agronomist, will speak on pasture management and forage procurement options for producers interested in managing their pastures to maximize cows per acre. In the second session of the track, the discussion will turn to advances in gene marker technology that will help producers concentrate on improving their breeding program to attract the best prices from the feeder calf market.
ICA is "Kickin' It Cowboy Style!" while celebrating its 40th Anniversary at its 2012 Convention and Annual Meeting. Early registration paid before Dec. 1 is just $75 per person and covers all events and meals during the three-day event. Full registrations after that time will be $125 per person. For those who want to attend the meeting at a lower cost, a registration level that doesn't include any meals is available at $25.
More information and conference and hotel registration information can be found online or with the registration form included in the October, November and December issues of the Iowa Cattleman magazine.