Had a great time at the New York Beef Producers’ Association‘s (“NYBPA”) annual meeting in Syracuse, New York. It was so wonderful to meet several cattle producers here in this beautiful state and I look forward to making some farm visits this spring and summer. I was overwhelmed by the welcoming spirit of New York cattle producers. It’s part of what I love most about the agriculture industry: no matter where you decide to hang your hat, there are always farmers and ranchers who will welcome other fellow agriculturalists.
It was a pleasure to finally meet Rich Brown in person. Rich is the President of the NYBPA and we have been in coorespondence about the new NYBPA Legislative Committeee. I am very excited about getting involved with policy issues here in New York State that affect agriculture producers, particularly cattlemen and women.
There was several great speakers discussing hot topics in the cattle industry. It was especially interesting to hear about the latest research with genetic DNA marbling markers. When I was in graduate school, there were only about 9 genes that were identifed as influencing genetic aptancy for marbling. Now there are thousands and new genetic tests for feed efficiency, fertility traits, and other carcases characteristics. Even though my thesis work was several years ago, I still believe that genetic DNA markers only tell a snapshot of the entire story and that cattle producers can more greatly affect marbing by nutrition and management.
I particularly enjoyed the presentation given by Kathy Finnerty regarding livestock welfare issues. It complemented my talk, blog posts and article about livestock animal welfare laws in New York. Kathy gave a general overview of federal animal welfare laws and spoke about the New York State Cattle Health Insurance Program (“NYSCHAP”). For more information on NYSCHAP, you can contact Kathy at email@example.com.
It was also wonderful to participate in the New York Simmental Association‘s (“NYSA”) annual meeting. For those of you that know me, you that the Simmental cattle breed is very near to my heart. NYSA has some great fundraisers planned for this next year to help raise money for its junior program. I am now a Director for the NYSA and am looking forward to getting involved however I can. It would be great for an American Junior Simmental Association (“AJSA”) regional to be back in New York State. Next summer’s Eastern Simmental Regional is in Meadville, PA.
If you are a New York beef producer and were unable to attend this year, I would definitely put it on your calendar for next year. It was a lot of fun meeting cattle industry folks from the Empire State and I look forward to representing New York next week at the Annual National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (“NCBA”) Convention and Trade Show in San Anton’.