Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Road to BQA Certification

If there is one thing I have learned through being an agvocate, it is that in order to be sustainable we must be socially pleasing.  Why I don't think everyone is angry with the farmers and ranchers producing their food, there are enough people upset to make me squirm in my seat.

My mind is constantly swirling with this question; how do we do it better?

How do we hire the best employees and get them to want to stay?
How do we improve our pen space?
How do we improve our bunks and water tanks?
How do we keep death loss down and sickness to a minimum?
How do we dispose of our manure in an environmentally beneficial way?

How do we do all of this on financially conservative budget?

The first thing I am going to do is start with this free tool of wading through the BQA certification program. . . 
Beef Quality Assurance is a national program that provides guidelines for beef cattle production. The program raises consumer confidence through offering proper management techniques and a commitment to quality within every segment of the beef industry.
Producers have embraced BQA because it is the right thing to do; but they have also gained through increased profitability. As an educating program, BQA helps producers identify management processes that can be improved.

We are trained and we are certified in many areas already. We are doing a lot of things right.  BUT, we are not perfect and we have some growing to do.  I am going to spend the rest of 2012 figuring out what we are doing right and what we can check of the list.  I think that will be a feel good activity for the holidays.  I am then going to analyze our list of things to improve, which I am sure will be painful to point out our flaws. Hopefully we will then spend 2013 fixing them and move into BQA certification.  

I am going to start and share with you our journey (it will be a long one, I am sure).  It will be a little longer than I thought last week.  Mostly because I had plans of winning the Power Ball (like many of you, I am sure).  If I had won I would have bought a new Silencer chute for 4+ Feeders for Christmas. 

Since that didn't happen I guess we will live in the reality of making our chute and working facility better.  If you do not own or care for any cattle, you can take the journey here on for the love of beef.  If you do have your own cattle (no matter how many) you should check out this BQA website and start your own journey.  This is going to be a fabulous New Year's Resolution. 

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