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URBANA -- The Illinois Pork Producers Association (IPPA) and University of Illinois Extension are teaming up again to offer a training opportunity for individuals wanting to become Pork Quality Assurance (PQA) Plus Version 3 advisors, or those needing re-certification.

The training will be held on Feb. 12 from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the IPPA office at 6411 S. 6th St., Springfield. The cost is $20 per person and includes lunch and all training materials. Registration can be paid the day of the training. Space is limited, so register early if possible.

In 1989, pork producers developed the PQA program, a producer education and certification program, to reduce the risk of violative animal health product residues in pork. In 2007, the program was enhanced and became known as PQA Plus®. This entirely volunteer program has trained over 71,000 farmers and farm personnel.

An application is required for those interested in advisor certification. Acceptance into the program requires that applicants meet the criteria to qualify. Applicants should download, complete, and submit the two-page application form available online at www.ilpork.com. Click on “Producers” and select “Certifications” and then “PQA 3 Advisor Training.” The application deadline is Feb. 8.

To be eligible as a PQA Plus® advisor, applicants must meet the following qualifications:

  1. Be a veterinarian, extension specialist, or ag educator (defined for this program as a person who spends full time in adult education or at least half time in production training), AND
  2. Have a D.V.M. or B.S. in animal science, or an equivalent combination of education and swine production experience as determined by the PQA Plus trainer reviewing the application, AND
  3. Have two years of recent documentable swine production experience.

For questions regarding qualification and the training program, email Rob Knox at rknox@illinois.edu or call 217-244-5177.

For more information on the training or application form, please contact Mike Borgic at 217-529-3100 or mike@ilpork.com.

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