On March 9 the 2018 Illinois Cattle Feeders Meeting will be held at Sauk Valley Community College near Dixon. While this may be a bit of a drive for people in Coles County, the meeting is promised to be impactful for individuals in the cattle industry. According to Travis Meteer, University of Illinois Beef Extension Educator, “This meeting is a must-attend for Illinois cattle producers. First-hand access to this kind of knowledge in the cattle industry is rare.”
The event is free of charge due to the meeting’s sponsorship by AgriKing, the Illinois Beef Association and University of Illinois Extension. Welcome and introductions begin at 9 a.m. with the slate of speakers finishing at 2:30 p.m., and then from 2:45-4:45 p.m. an optional BQA (Beef Quality Assurance) training will be available.
The first speaker, Allison Cooke, director of governmental affairs for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, will discuss agricultural policy issues. She will give an update on the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA); electronic logging device regulations for truckers; and other issues pertinent to Illinois cattlemen.
The topic of the second presentation is “Handling Livestock Manure.” Ted Funk, U of I professor emeritus, will discuss manure handling best management practices and give an update on the Illinois Livestock Management Facilities Act. Funk will also be able to answer questions regarding building citing and environmental regulations.
Josh McCann, assistant professor in the Department of Animal Sciences at U of I, presents the last presentation prior to lunch. He will share new research concerning transitioning diets for cattle. During lunch, Jill Johnson, Interim EVP of the Illinois Beef Association, will provide an update of the Association’s activities.
Dr. Nathan Pyatt, technical consultant for Elanco Animal Health, will kick off the afternoon session. He will discuss benchmark data collected in Midwestern feedlots and explain how using technology can be a good investment for the cattle feeder.
The afternoon session will close with a market update and outlook given by Lance Zimmerman, an analyst for CattleFax. Zimmerman will give producers insight into current and future market dynamics.
Cattlemen and cattlewomen interested in becoming Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) certified can finish their day by attending the optional training from 2:45-4:45 p.m. This training, led by Travis Meteer, costs $10.