Livestock QA Sessions for 2023-24 Program Year
All youth who plan to exhibit a food animal at the Pike County Fair or the Ohio State Fair must annually attend or complete a quality assurance program, or they may pass a test based on the appropriate skill level for their age (twelve to fourteen or fifteen to eighteen) under the supervision of Ohio State University Extension or Ohio agricultural education before exhibiting terminal or partial terminal market livestock, including Market beef, market swine, market lambs, market goats, market poultry, market rabbits, lactating dairy cattle and lactating goats in a junior livestock show. Youth who pass the test will be exempt from annual quality assurance re-certification until they move to the next age bracket or they are no longer a junior exhibitor (nineteen years of age or older on January first of their last year).
*ALL PIKE QA MUST BE COMPLETED BY JUNE ____
- December 28, 2023: IN-PERSON starting at 3:00 pm at Extension office
- More dates to be announced soon!
Quality Assurance: Test-Out Option
- Youth ages 12-14 who pass the test can test out of their annual QA program for up to 3 years. The passing of this test only exempts attendance at QA until the member reaches a 4-H age of 15. At that time, they would take the 15-18 year-old test.
- Youth ages 15-18 years of age who pass the QA test can test out of their annual QA program permanently.
- All ages are based on a member's 4-H age (the age that they are as of January 1 of the current year).
How to Prepare:
This year the test will primarily be over the Good Production Practices 1, 3, and 6 but other Good Production Practices will be included. We recommend that members study their 4-H Project Resource Book, focusing on the Quality Assurance section of the book.
You can also use the following references to study:
- Introduction to Quality Assurance
- Good Production Practice 1
- Good Production Practice 2
- Good Production Practice 3
- Good Production Practice 4
- Good Production Practice 5
- Good Production Practice 6
- Good Production Practice 7
- Good Production Practice 8
- Good Production Practice 9
- Good Production Practice 10
The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) Advisory Committee on Livestock Exhibitions voted on the following rule change for 2018. It will went into effect in late January 2018 after going through the proper procedures for changes to the Ohio Revised Code.
§ Junior fair exhibitors ages 8 to 11 shall annually participate in a face-to-face education session that is taught by an authorized instructor.
§ Junior fair exhibitors ages 12 to 19 shall either annually complete an educational session or successfully complete the test-out option.
Regardless of age, junior fair exhibitors shall successfully complete the educational program not less than 45 days prior to the opening date of the exhibition in which they will participate.
Thus, QA training and certification must be completed not less than 45 days prior to the opening day of your county fair.
WHY QUALITY ASSURANCE?
Quality assurance is a pledge or promise to
1) provide a food animal product preferred by consumers, and
2) provide a safe, wholesome food animal product. Food animals are those whose products (meat, milk, and eggs) have the potential to become part of the food chain.
Food safety is paramount to animal agriculture, assuring consumer acceptance and confidence in a market where competing proteins and other alternatives are emerging, rivaling food products of animal origin. Furthermore, issues surrounding animal welfare in agricultural livestock production have surfaced that must be addressed at all levels of food animal production, including youth participation in food animal projects.
Youth involved in food animal exhibitions, by definition, are food animal producers. Youth food animal producers, at the culmination of the project, will sell their animal(s) and food products which are intended for human consumption.
Knowledge and mastery of the science of genetics, nutrition, management, handling, and environment in relation to the youth's food animal projects plays a critical role in the success of producing safe and wholesome food products for consumers. Therefore, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) mandates that all youth exhibiting food animal projects participate annually in quality assurance programming. OSU Extension provides the leadership for implementing quality assurance programs, in partnership with agricultural education and agricultural societies.
Youth who take food animal projects, by participating in science-based experiential learning activities, learn how to ensure that the products from their 4-H food animals are safe for consumers, and that their actions inspire general public and consumer confidence in assuring well-cared-for animals and quality products.
Assuring Quality Care for Animals merges the current state-mandated Youth Food Animal Quality Assurance program with animal handling, care and welfare. It expands the scope and breadth of curriculum that is already in place to address the critical issues of quality assurance, food safety, and animal handling and welfare. Components of this program will raise public awareness of the importance of animal handling, care, and welfare in not only farm animal production, but also in the companion and performance animal industry. Furthermore, this program will build a general understanding of food safety to improve the confidence level of consumers toward a safe, wholesome food supply.