WYOMING – Beef Quality Assurance is a nationally coordinated, state-implemented program that provides systematic information to U.S. beef producers and beef consumers of how common-sense husbandry techniques can be coupled with accepted scientific knowledge to raise cattle under optimum management and environmental conditions.
BQA guidelines are designed to make certain all beef consumers can take pride in what they purchase – and can trust and have confidence in the entire beef industry.
Recently the U.S. Department of Agriculture reviewed and certified that the BQA program complies with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) Animal Welfare Management/General Requirements and Guidance for Organizations in the Food Supply Chain. The ISO specification was developed in 2016 to provide a path for programs to show they are aligned with the principles of the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE) Terrestrial Animal Health Code and ensures the welfare of farm animals across the supply chain.
In Wyoming the BQA program has thrived and state coordinator Dr. Steve Paisley says the program continues to gain momentum.
“We have a steady stream of interest in the certification,” says Paisley. “Producers see a value in educating themselves and often encourage their employees to get certified as well. As direct marketing becomes more and more prevalent, BQA certification is another way to assure consumers they’re receiving a quality wholesome product.”
“Raising cattle in the very best of environmental and management settings is a hallmark of Wyoming producers,” says Wyoming Beef Council's Ann Wittmann. “The Beef Quality Assurance program has found a natural home in our state.”
BQA is funded by the Beef Checkoff and is managed by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. For more information, visit bqa.org.