AMES, Iowa -- Veterinarians and others in Iowa’s pork industry can become Pork Quality Assurance Plus™ Advisors under the National Pork Board's PQA Plus™ program. The certification process requires attending a daylong training session and passing an exam at the conclusion of that session. The Iowa Pork Industry Center (IPIC) at Iowa State University (ISU) will hold one such training Aug. 21.
James McKean, IPIC associate director and ISU Extension swine veterinarian, is coordinating the training in the Ensminger Room in Kildee Hall on the Iowa State campus. The session instructors will be ISU animal science and veterinary medicine faculty members who are certified PQA Plus™ trainers.
McKean said those who qualify and are interested in the program should download, complete and submit the two-page application form available online at http://www.ipic.iastate.edu/PQAPapp82109.doc The form also is available by fax by calling Jane Runneals at IPIC at (515) 294-4103.
“If you’re interested in attending, please let us know by submitting an application as soon as possible," McKean said. "The application deadline is Aug. 7, with the $75 due from approved applicants by Aug. 14.”
To be eligible to submit an application, people 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.
PQA Plus™ was developed by the Pork Industry Animal Care Coalition, as a continuous improvement program. The coalition, made up of pork producers, packers/processors, restaurants and food retailers, dedicated itself to finding a food-industry solution that would give confidence to consumers that U.S. pork is produced in a way that respects animal well-being. PQA Plus™ merges the food safety and animal well-being concepts of the original PQA program into three steps: individual certification through education, farm site assessment, and the opportunity for audit that gives customer credibility. For more information on PQA Plus™ contact the National Pork Board at 800-456-PORK, or go to http://www.pork.org/Producers/PQAP.aspx?c=About