Nearly 4,000 producers from across the country registered to become Beef Quality Assurance (BQA)-certified thanks to an offer from Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica, Inc. (BIVI). That is nearly double last year’s number, which makes nearly 10,000 producers who have made a commitment to quality over the past two years through the BIVI free-certification partnership. Through the sponsorship of the BQA certification program, BIVI provides financial support for the Beef Cattle Institute, which developed the certification module.

The checkoff-funded BQA program is important to the cattle industry as it provides producers a set of best practices for producing quality beef. It also gives consumers the assurance that the beef they eat is both safe and wholesome.

“Being BQA-certified says that as a cattlemen you’re serious about the cattle business — number one,” says Josh White, executive director of producer education, who coordinates the national BQA efforts. “All of us think in our own mind that we’re doing the right thing. BQA management practices are scientifically researched and proven by industry experts. We can be sure we’re providing our animals the best care.”

The BQA certification modules are customized to fit the specific needs of each segment of the cattle industry – cow-calf, stocker, feedyard and dairy operations. The program covers best management practices such as proper handling and administration of vaccinations and other products, eliminating injection site blemishes, and better cattle-handling principles. Although the free certification period has passed, it’s never too late to proclaim your commitment to quality and become BQA-certified through your state trainings or online at www.bqa.org/team.

Producing quality beef for consumers is the bottom line goal for the industry. “By being BQA-certified, you’re delivering that message to consumers,” says White. “You care and are committed to delivering a high-quality product.”

For more information about your beef checkoff investment, visit MyBeefCheckoff.com.