AnSci Connection - March 2015

♦ Notes from the Department Head ♦

Dr. Bill DaytonWelcome to the March issue of AnSci Connection. As usual in Minnesota we have had some cold weather in February but significantly less snow than normal for the year. With classes in full swing it is a busy time of year for faculty, staff and students in the department.

The recent Stronger Together: Minnesota Dairy Growth Summit held on February 9 in the Continuing Education and Conference Center on the St. Paul campus of the University of Minnesota and co-hosted by Midwest Dairy, the University of Minnesota and Minnesota Milk was a success. This summit brought together dairy leaders from industry, academics and production to discuss ways to advance the dairy production in Minnesota. The summit was well attended and provided a first step towards developing a plan for growing a vibrant dairy industry in Minnesota.

As our lives, jobs and learning become more global, study abroad opportunities are becoming an increasingly important part of educating our students and ourselves so the Department is making an effort to include these courses in our curriculum. For several years, Dr. Mike White has offered a course entitled “Sustainable Food Systems of Italy (Sicily and Rome)” during May term. The main objective of this course is to examine sustainable food systems in Italy to better understand the ethical considerations of food production and consumption, the environmental impacts of food production and the socioeconomic supports necessary for such systems to develop and survive. Italy was chosen as the destination for this course because of its very strong food culture that focuses on quality and prizes regionally produced foods. These food systems have remained sustainable and have maintained their unique character of high quality and sustainability even in this modern age of globalization and homogenization.

Additionally, for the first time this coming May term, Dr. Melissa Palmer is offering a wildlife medicine and conservation course in Belize. This course is an intensive introduction to key topics in wildlife medicine. Students will learn medical issues and approaches, the role of the veterinarian in wildlife conservation, zoo medicine, and wildlife rescue and rehabilitation. This program is held at the Belize Wildlife and Referral Clinic’s (BWRC) teaching facility with BWRC’s founder and wildlife veterinarian, Dr. Isabelle Paquet-Durand. Students will also learn general principles in marine animal zoology and physiology on the coastal waters of Belize. A certified master diver will give them instruction on how to snorkel and dive.

Both of these courses have been extremely popular with our students and we are hoping that their success will encourage other faculty members to consider developing study abroad courses to increase our offering in this increasingly important area.


Dr. William R. Dayton
Department Head

♦ Faculty Highlights ♦

Dr. Ryan Cox

Dr. Ryan Cox currently serves as Extension Meats Specialist and Associate Professor in the Department of Animal Science and the Department of Food Science and Nutrition. His appointment is 60% extension and 40% research. In addition to his roles in extension and research, Ryan serves as the faculty coordinator of the Meat Science Laboratory. 

Before joining the faculty at the U of M in 2008, Ryan received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Animal Science from Auburn University and his Ph.D. in Animal and Food Science from the University of Kentucky. He served as the Intercollegiate Meats Judging Coach during his time at both schools. 

Ryan’s research focus includes adding value and safety to meat products and evaluating the emergence of novel production and processing practices. A substantial portion of his research has been devoted to the effects of feeding cattle and swine byproducts from the ethanol and biodiesel industry on meat quality, more specifically on fat quality. Additionally, a number of projects have evaluated meat processing effects on the physico-chemical characteristics of meat fats, and consequently, sensory quality. Moreover, Ryan has worked with a number of projects evaluating the prevalence of viruses and pathogenic bacteria in beef and pork products throughout the production chain.

Ryan concentrates his extension efforts in providing Minnesota meat processors and livestock producers with opportunities to add value and alternatively market safe and wholesome meat products to an informed consumer. In targeting efforts to this purpose, flagship programs that Ryan has developed during his 6 years at the U of M are categorized as Meat Science for Meat Processors, Livestock Producers, or Consumers and Youth. These programs include the Value-Added Meat Processing Workshop, the Minnesota State Fair Processed Meats Championship, the HACCP, Sanitation and Auditing Workshop, Beef U, the Deer Processing Workshop, the Meat Science 101 Evening Course, and the BBQ Spring Training Workshop. Additionally, Ryan consults with processors and producers to ensure compliance with state and federal regulations, while also meeting the demands of the modern consumer 

Working closely with Tristan McNamara and Dallas Dornink in the Meat Laboratory, he continues to seek strategies to provide extension, research and teaching entities within and outside of the university with opportunities and access to animal derived products. Whether through classroom interaction, project development or access to the salesroom, Ryan hopes that all users of the laboratory understand that it is a critical component of animal and food science education. Major accomplishments in the laboratory have included the overhaul of the physical facility, as well as the long term on-site partnership with Jack Link’s Beef Jerky, the largest meat snack company in the world.

Ryan and his wife, Mercedes (M.S. from the U of M), live in Falcon Heights and enjoy spending time with friends and family. They also enjoy traveling, volunteer work and opportunities to show their two dogs all of the great outdoor opportunities in the Twin Cities.

Ryan Cox with Tristan McNamara

Above: Ryan Cox (right) with Tristan McNamara.

♦ News & Announcements ♦

March 5 is Deadline to Apply for Nelson Scholarship

The Minnesota Association of Meat Processors (MAMP) offers two $500 Nelson Scholarships to students currently enrolled as either an undergraduate or graduate student at the U of M in the Department of Animal Science or the Department of Food Science and Nutrition. The Nelson Scholarship is named in honor Pete Nelson who served as Supervisor of the U of M's Andrew Boss Laboratory of Meat Science from 2007 to 2013.

Applicants must provide a copy of their U of M student transcript (unofficial copies also accepted), and an essay (1,000 words or less) discussing their education and academic activity, their professional goals, and their future role in the meat and/or food industry. All application materials must be received by 11:59pm (CST) on March 5, 2015, and must be sent electronically by email to

Awards will be presented to recipients at the MAMP Annual Convention Awards Banquet on March 14th. The convention is March 13 and 14 at the River's Edge Convention Center, St. Cloud, MN. A Pre-Convention Workshop will be held on March 12 (1:00-5:00 p.m.) at St. Joseph Meat Market, St. Joseph, MN. "Value-Added Meat Processing: Focused on Fresh" is hosted by St. Joseph Meat Market, and provided by U of M Meat Science, cooperating universities and industry professionals.

Read more about Pete Nelson and the Nelson Scholarship here. For more information, please contact Ryan Cox at or 612-624-3063. Details about the MAMP Annual Convention can be found here.

Meat Science Roasts Pig for COCHON 555

U of M Meat Science is excited to partner with Scott Pampuch, Executive Chef for Aramark and University Dining Services to provide products and expertise for the COCHON 555 event to be held March 1 in Minneapolis. The culinary competition evaluates 5 chefs, using 5 different pigs, and 5 wine makers as a weekend long event culminating on Sunday. 

In addition to processing and preparing a unique roasted pig, sourced from the Department of Animal Science and processed in the Andrew Boss Laboratory of Meat Science, Ryan Cox and Scott Pampuch will join celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern in judging the products submitted by the competition chefs.

For more information and to buy tickets to the event, please visit the COCHON 555 website.

Two Animal Science Students Accepted to Center of Excellence

The Midwest Poultry Consortium accepted two U of M students to the Center of Excellence program. Chou Chang is working on a degree in Animal Science with a Production Emphasis in Poultry. Michaela Olson is working on a degree in Animal Science and Pre-Veterinary Medicine. 

Chou and Michaela will be taking summer courses focusing on Poultry Science at UW-Madison starting May 18 and will also be completing internships with poultry companies. Their scholarships include tuition, housing and coordination of paid summer internships. Classes are accelerated with each student earning 9 credits over 6 weeks taking courses in Avian Physiology, Breeder Flock and Hatchery Management, and Poultry Products Technology.

In total, the Midwest Poultry Consortium awarded 28 scholarships to students from 14 different Universities.

Gopher Dairy Students Actively Engage at Midwest Gathering of Dairy Science Clubs

Forty-three members of the Gopher Dairy Club traveled to Wisconsin Dells for the Midwest regional meeting of dairy science clubs on January 30-31. The event was hosted by the Pioneer Dairy Club from UW-Platteville. The regional gathering included dairy industry speakers, a dairy breeds roundtable, knowledge bowls, and many opportunities to network with representatives from other dairy science clubs. Dr. Les Hansen accompanied the U of M students. 

The yearbook of the Gopher Dairy Club, The Topline, placed 1st in regional competition (both the printed and electronic versions). During the business meeting, Kelsey Mussman served as the 2014-15 Secretary-Treasurer, and Mary Liebenstein was elected as the 2015-16 Officer at Large.

Nearly 400 representatives attended from the following universities: Illinois, Iowa State, Kansas State, Michigan State, Minnesota, North Dakota State, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Purdue, South Dakota State, UW-Madison, UW-Platteville, and UW-River Falls.

Gopher Dairy Club members at 2015 Regional ADSA

Students Represent U of M at Midwest Dairy Challenge

The U of M was well-represented at the 11th annual Midwest Dairy Challenge held February 11-13 in Sioux Center, IA. The event was hosted by Dordt College, with 80 student participants from 20 collegiate dairy programs in Midwestern states. Participants from the U of M included CFANS students Matthew Hanson, Allison Pieper, Alyson Schwartau and Justin Siewert. Dr. Marcia Endres coached the team.

Dairy Challenge® is an innovative dairy analysis competition, developed by industry and university professionals, that exposes students to opportunities in a vibrant dairy industry. Working in four- or five-person, mixed-university teams, students at the Midwest Dairy Challenge assessed all aspects of a working dairy farm and presented recommendations for improvement to a panel of judges and participating farm families.

Day 1 of this year's Dairy Challenge began with educational seminars by Molly Sloan, Alta Genetics and Tom Olberg, Diamond V Mills. Next, students were assigned to teams with each team receiving production, financial and farm management data from a working dairy.

On Day 2, student teams inspected the dairy and interviewed farm owners. Each team developed a farm analysis with recommendations for nutrition, reproduction, milking procedures, animal health, housing and financial management. The ultimate goal of providing recommendations is to help improve farm performance and operation profitability.

Day 3 was presentation day. Team members presented recommendations and then fielded questions from a panel of judges. These official judges included dairy producers and industry experts in dairy finances, reproduction/genetics, nutrition and animal health. Presentations were evaluated for accuracy of analysis and recommendations, with awards presented at the end of the day.

Matthew Hanson was a member of the team that placed 2nd on Farm 1 division. Congratulations to all of the U of M students; they gave a very professional presentation. Our students described the contest as an excellent learning and networking opportunity.

Thank you to all the industry sponsors that make the Dairy Challenge possible!

Midwest Dairy Challenge Team 2015

2015 U of M Midwest Dairy Challenge Team
Front row (L-R): Allison Pieper, coach Marcia Endres, and Alyson Schwartau
Back row (L-R): Matthew Hanson and Justin Siewert

The North American Intercollegiate Dairy Challenge (NAIDC) was established as a management contest to incorporate all phases of a dairy business. Its mission is to facilitate education, communication and an exchange of ideas among students, agribusiness, dairy producers and universities that enhances the development of the dairy industry and its leaders. In its 13-year history, Dairy Challenge has helped train over 4,500 students through one national and four regional contests and more recently the Dairy Academy conducted annually. NAIDC is supported through generous donations by 140 agribusinesses and dairy producers, and coordinated by a volunteer board of directors. Dr. Marcia Endres has served on the board of directors since 2009.

Forage for "U" Workshop

The last of three Forages for "U" workshops, offered by U of M Extension, is being held at the McLeod County Fairgrounds in Hutchinson, MN (map) on March 2. The Forages for "U" workshops are designed to deliver high-quality research-based educational programming to forage producers, grazers, crop consultants, industry representatives and the general public on the importance of forage production systems both from economic and environmental perspectives. The cost of the workshop is $30.

Workshop topics and speakers are:

  • Corn Silage Forage Analysis and Variety Selection - Jim Paulson, Extension Educator-Dairy
  • Alfalfa/Grass Hay Production: Planting to Harvest - Doug Holen, Extension Educator-Crops
  • Alfalfa Variety Trial Update and Alfalfa Establishment Strategies: A Pathway to Increase Yield - Dr. Scott Wells, Extension Forage & Cropping Systems Specialist
  • Soil Fertility and its Impact on Forage Quality - Dr. Dan Kaiser, Extension Soil Scientist
Forages for "U" workshop graphic

For more information, please contact Nathan Winter at or 320-484-4303.

MLBA to Honor 2015 Hall of Fame Inductees

The 119th Annual Banquet of the Minnesota Livestock Breeders' Association (MLBA) will be held at noon on March 19, 2015 in the North Star Ballroom, St. Paul Campus Student Center (map). Immediately following the banquet, the MLBA will honor the 2015 Hall of Fame inductees.

In recognition of his exceptional service to livestock producers, Dr. Les Hansen, Morse Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professor, Department of Animal Science, U of M, will be presented with the MLBA Service Award.

Holstein breeders Mark and Al Schmitt from Royalton, MN, and Joe and Evelyn Stransky from Owatonna, MN, will receive Breeder Awards for excellence as livestock breeders.

This year's Pioneer Award honors Russ Seath, former Steele County Ag Extension Agent (1924-1930), for his leadership in the development of the A.I. industry for dairy cattle in southern Minnesota.

Banquet tickets are $25 per person. Please register by March 15 via email to Steve Pooch at

The Minnesota Livestock Breeders' Association is the united front organization representing the best long-term interests of its 20 purebred livestock member associations.  Each of these respective associations is automatically a member of MLBA. It is hoped that each association will be represented at this annual meeting. Everyone interested in livestock is welcome.

Mandatory Safety Training

Anyone at the U of M who transports livesotck, feed and research plot equipment must attend the "Trailering and Load Securement Safety" seminar. This mandatory training seminar will be held on Wednesday, March 4, 10:00-11:30 a.m., in Room 172 of the Plant Growth Facility on the U of M St. Paul Campus. The seminar will be presented by Steven Krueger of the Minnesota State Patrol.

Please RSVP Tom Warnke via email ( Email or call (612-625-1228) Tom with any questions.

Enterprise Financial System Upgrade

The upgrade of our PeopleSoft systems is planned for April. Systems interruption, or cutover period, is expected to being April 10 and last for approximately 10 days. During this time PeopleSoft and related systems will be unavailable or view-only. This means that no UMarket orders can be placed, no reimbursements will be processed, and there will be shorter time frames for turning in P-Cards for reconciliation.

Please plan accordingly.

GradFest 15 graphicNo Hassle for a Tassle at GradFest '15

Save time and take care of all your graduation planning needs while exploring dozens of graduation-related exhibits at GradFest '15! GradFest is the U of M's one-stop source for graduation information, services and products. Pick up a cap and gown, order graduation announcements, have a commencement portrait taken, have your resume evaluated, learn about health care options, and more

GradFest '15 will be held at Great Hall in Coffman Union on March 25 (10:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.) and March 26 (10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.). Visit the GradFest website here.

Classes Without Quizzes logoTake a Class; Skip the Test!

Classes Without Quizzes is a unique way to learn about the work of CFANS faculty and how it affects the daily lives of Minnesotans. This year attendees can learn about Minnesota commodity prices and trends, track a tomato from farm to fast food, gain practical knowledge about integrating more renewable energy into your home, and hear the latest research on crop drones, antropogenic impacts on birds, new perennial wheatgrass, and more!

Keynote speaker Brian Horgan, professor and extension specialist in the Department of Horticultural Sciences, will present Science of (the) Green, a renovation, demonstration and research initiative addressing the golf industry’s need for long-term agronomic, economic and environmental sustainability.

The Kids' Edition, for grades K-6, offers hands-on, fun and educational activities led by youth educators.

Classes Without Quizzes will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2015, starting at 8:00 a.m. More information and a link to registration can be found online here.

Midwest Farm Energy Conference to be Held at WCROC in June

2015 Midwest Farm Energy Conference graphicThe 2015 Midwest Farm Energy Conference is for producers, industry leaders, educators, and energy conservationists – anyone interested in learning more about energy optimized systems for dairy production, energy conservation and generation in swine facilities, and optimized and cost-effective crop production.

The 2015 Midwest Farm Energy Conference, hosted by the West Central Research and Outreach Center (WCROC), will be held June 17-19, 2015. Network with energy experts and professionals. Take a bus tour of the WCROC dairy facilities, the WCROC swine facilities including a solar photovoltaic system, and the WCROC Renewable Hydrogen and Ammonia Pilot Plant, as well as other energy systems in the region.

Further details will be posted on the conference website.

Recognition for Work in Equity and Diversity

Each year, the Office for Equity and Diversity (OED) sponsors numerous awards in support of equity and diversity work and achievements at the U of M. Consider nominating an individual for the Josie R. Johnson Human Rights and Social Justice Award and/or apply for an Equity and Diversity Transformation Award. Both awards are wonderful opportunities to recognize passionate individuals who are engaged in the work of equity and diversity.

Josie R. Johnson Human Rights and Social Justice Award: This award honors faculty, staff, and students who, through their work at the University or in their community, exemplify Dr. Johnson's standard of excellence in creating respectful and inclusive living, learning and working environments, and who demonstrate unusual commitment and passion in the areas of human rights and social justice. The award is given to two individuals each year – one current faculty or staff member and one current undergraduate or graduate student. Nominations are due March 16, 2015. For a full description of the nomination guidelines and procedures, visit:

Equity and Diversity Transformation Awards: These awards fund creative yet pragmatic proposals for projects that support equity and diversity initiatives. They also provide a platform for cooperative efforts that will not only advance the institution's transformation, but also help ensure that all resources devoted to equity and diversity are used to ensure maximum impact. The focus for this year's awards is on advancement of the action steps identified by the Campus Climate Workgroup in its January 2015 report. Applications are due April 3, 2015. For a full description of the application guidelines and procedures, visit:

Science Discovery Day Camps at Bell Museum

Science Discovery Day Camps offered by the Bell Museum deliver science to youth in a fun and enriching environment with hands-on, inquiry-based classroom and laboratory activities led by Bell Museum education staff. Opportunities for campers include visiting the ExploraDome planetarium, meeting with University scientists, outdoor exploration and recreation, and more. The camps run in June, July and August. See the list of camps, camp descriptions, dates, prices, and registration information on the Bell Museum's website for Science Discovery Day Camps.

Bell Museum Science Discover Day Camp graphic

♦ Graduate Student Profile ♦

Katie Cottingim

Katie CottingimKatie Cottingim is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Animal Science under the direction of Dr. Jerry Shurson and Dr. Pedro Urriola with collaboration from Dr. Sagar Goyal (CVM). Katie’s M.S. research program is focused on understanding survivability and transmission of Swine Delta Corona virus (SDCv) in feed, feed ingredients (including DDGS). Similar to Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv), SDCv is having devastating effects on health and mortality of pigs in the U.S. pork industry, but very little is known about its control and prevention. The major route of PEDV and SDCv transmission is fecal-oral, and contaminated feed and feed ingredients have been demonstrated as sources of virus transmission between and within herds. Management of risk of virus transmission has resulted in a paradigm shift in feed delivery, formulation, and ingredient purchasing decisions in the swine industry. However, no data are available that describe virus survival in feed matrixes, storage conditions, and processing. Therefore, Katie’s research will measure the time that takes to inactivate SDCv in feces, slurry, feed, plasma, facility and equipment surfaces (plastic, stainless steel, galvanized steel, and aluminum), drinking water, and recycled water. In addition, to mitigate the risk of virus transmission, the use of commercial feed additives and irradiation to inactivate SDCv are being evaluated. Katie has used a combination of in vitro (cell culture) and in vivo (bioassay) procedures to measure virus viability.

Katie grew up on a small hobby farm in Camden, OH where she raised and showed swine, cattle, sheep and goats. After graduating high school in 2009, she attended Morehead State University where she pursued a B.S. degree in Animal Science. While at Morehead State, Katie was involved in many student organizations such as Collegiate FFA, Livestock Judging Team, Agriculture Ambassador, and the Delta Tau Alpha honor society. Prior to beginning her M.S. degree program at the University of Minnesota, she decided to obtain more research and feed industry experience by working on a dairy calf and poultry research farm, as well as serving as a swine nutrition assistant formulating diets for customers with Provimi North America, which is owned by Cargill.

Katie’s career goal is to complete her research and M.S. degree program in swine nutrition and return back home to work with Cargill or another feed company.

♦ Condolences ♦

Roger Drinkwalter, U of M Graduate (Dairy Industry)

Roger Drinkwalter, WWII B-17 pilot, POW, businessman, loving husband, proud father and grandfather, died on January 13, 2014, with his family at his side. Roger was born April 15, 1922 in Zumbro Falls, MN, and raised on a farm. As WWII broke out, like many young men his age, he signed up for duty. The USAF (Army Air Corp at the time) was the place for him. He reported for Active Duty to Jefferson Barracks, MO, February 19, 1943. After pilot training he was transferred to the 390th Bomb Group, Framlingham, England (13th wing) where he picked up his plane, the Belle of the Brawl. On his 10th mission he was shot down, found by the enemy and was a POW in Stalag Luft #1, Barth, Germany from January 5, 1945 until he was liberated by the Russian Army April 29, 1945. His USAF career ended as a Lt. Col. (Ret) 20 years later, but the Air Force and love of planes never left his heart. He was active in his POW group, touring with them and joining the 390th Bomb Group Museum in Arizona.

After the war, Roger earned his B.S. in Dairy Industry from the U of M, married his college sweetheart, Ann, and on a snowy spring day in 1947 they embarked on the beginning of their life's adventure. Starting in San Francisco with Golden State Foods (later Foremost Dairies) his career opportunities led them to Fort Bragg, CA, then San Luis Obispo, and eventually San Diego, where they settled. After retirement from the dairy industry, his sales skills, gregarious nature and ever present smile were put to great use in the commercial and home mortgage industry. After one more retirement, he and Ann traveled the world with one adventure after another seeing South America, Russia, Scandinavia, China, Europe, New Zealand and Australia. They were active in the U of M Alumni Association, and in particular in his fraternity AGR, Scottish Rite Masonic Lodge, Daedalians, MOAA, Rotary Club, and Toastmasters. They remember family camping trips under the stars at Lake Tahoe, beach breakfast picnics with the Coleman stove and all the abalone and fresh crab you could eat in Northern California.

Roger is survived by his wife of nearly 67 years Ann, daughters Julie (husband Dennis) Ritter and Jane Drinkwalter, grandson Brice Ritter, sister Jean Levandowski, and numerous cousins, nephews, nieces throughout the country. Services were held at First United Methodist Church, 2111 Camino del Rio S, San Diego, on January 23, 2014. In lieu of flowers, the family suggested donations to the San Diego USO and the Alzheimer's Association.

♦ Congratulations ♦

Ahnna (Ag Industries & Marketing, 2008) and Kyle Compart (Animal Science, 2008) welcomed their first child, a girl, into the world on January 13, 2015. Korie Lauren Compart weighed in at 8 lb, 10 oz at birth (see photo).

♦ Calendar of Events ♦

- March -

2 - Forages for "U" (10:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m.), McLeod County Fairgrounds, Hutchinson, MN. Contact: Nathan Winter, or 320-484-4303.

3 - Strategies to Manage Phosphorus on Livestock Farms, Fillmore County Office Building, Preston, MN. Registration 10:00 a.m.; Program 10:30-2:00. Contact: Kristi Ruesink, 507-765-3896.

4 - Certification Classes: PQA Plus (9:00 a.m.-Noon) / TQA Training (1:00-4:00 p.m.), AmericInn, Marshall, MN. Classes are free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

4 - SowBridge "Swine ID Plan Update - Supporting Swine with PINs and PIN Tags" - Patrick Webb, National Pork Board. Look for more information on the U of M Swine Extension website: Contact: Sarah Schieck, 320-589-1711 or

4 - Strategies to Manage Phosphorus on Livestock Farms, Murray County Courts Building, Slayton, MN. Registration 10:00 a.m.; Program 10:30-2:00. Contact: Melissa Runck, 507-836-6927.

5 - Strategies to Manage Phosphorus on Livestock Farms, McLeod County Fairgrounds, Hutchinson, MN. Registration 10:30 a.m.; Program 11:00-2:00. Contact: Nathan Winter, 320-484-4334.

9 - Dairy Producer Series: Calf Management, State Bank of New Prague, New Prague, MN.

10 - Emerging Professionals Network: Surly Taproom (5:30-7:30 p.m.), Surly Brewing Beer Hall, Minneapolis, MN. Contact: Masha Finn, 612-624-9957,

11 - Dairy Producer Series: Beginning the Process of Farm Transition, Sibley County Service Center, Gaylord, MN.

12 - MAMP Pre-Convention Workshop: "Value-Added Meat Processing" (1:00-5:00 p.m.), St. Joseph Meat Market, St. Joseph, MN.

13-14 - Minnesota Association of Meat Processors (MAMP) Convention, River's Edge Convention Center, St. Cloud, MN.

16-18 - ADSA/ASAS Midwest Section Meetings, Des Moines, IA

16-20 - Spring Break.

17-19 - Midwest Poultry Federation Convention, Saint Paul RiverCentre, St. Paul, MN.

19 - Minnesota Livestock Breeders Association (MBLA) Annual Luncheon, North Star Ballroom, U of M St. Paul Campus. Contact: Steve Pooch,

19 - Strategies to Manage Phosphorus on Livestock Farms, MN West, Pipestone, MN. Registration 10:00 a.m.; Program 10:30-2:00. Contact: Melissa Runck, 507-836-6927.

24-26 - Central Plains Dairy Expo, Convention Center, Sioux Falls, SD.

25 - Certification Classes: PQA Plus (9:00 a.m.-Noon) / TQA Training (1:00-4:00 p.m.), West Central ROC, Morris, MN. Classes are free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

25-26 - GradFest '15, Great Hall, Coffman Union.

26 - Strategies to Manage Phosphorus on Livestock Farms, Houston County Justice Center, Caledonia, MN. Registration 10:00 a.m.; Program 10:30-2:00. Contact: Steve Richette, 507-725-5807.

- April -

1 - Certification Classes: PQA Plus (9:00 a.m.-Noon) / TQA Training (1:00-4:00 p.m.), Rice Lions Bldg, Rice, MN. Classes are free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

1 - SowBridge "PEDv: What is New and What Have We Learned" - Bob Morrison, U of M. Look for more information on the U of M Swine Extension website: Contact: Sarah Schieck, 320-589-1711 or

2 - PorkBridge "Controlling Pests - Insects & Rodents" - Roger Moon, U of M; John Beller, Beller Biosecurity Strategies, Inc. Look for more information on the U of M Swine Extension website: Contact: Sarah Schieck, 320-589-1711 or

6 - Dairy Producer Series: Emergency/Disaster Preparedness at the Dairy, State Bank of New Prague, New Prague, MN.

9 - Dairy Producer Series: Dairy by the Numbers, McLeod County Fairgrounds, Hutchinson, MN.

13-18 - 99th Minnesota Royal, U of M St. Paul Campus. Follow Minnesota Royal on Facebook.

22 - Certification Classes: PQA Plus (9:00 a.m.-Noon) / TQA Training (1:00-4:00 p.m.), Nobles County Government Center, Farmers Room, Worthington, MN. Classes are free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

22 - Borealis Night of Excellence. Contact: Holly Klinger, 612-624-0822 or

- May -

6 - SowBridge "Five Things You Wanted to Know About Pen Gestation but Were Afraid to Ask" - Tom Parsons, U of PA. Look for more information on the U of M Swine Extension website: Contact: Sarah Schieck, 320-589-1711 or

6-8 - Minnesota Dairy Health Conference, Crowne Plaza Hotel & Suites PSO Airport -Mall of America, Bloomington, MN.

20 - Certification Classes: PQA Plus (9:00 a.m.-Noon) / TQA Training (1:00-4:00 p.m.), McLeod County Fairgrounds, Commercial Bldg, Hutchinson, MN. Classes are free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

- June -

4 - PorkBridge "Effective Procedures for Cleaning Up After PED, PRRS, etc." - Rebecca Robbins, Seaboard Foods Corp. Look for more information on the U of M Swine Extension website: Contact: Sarah Schieck, 320-589-1711 or

10 - SowBridge "Temperature Management for Sows and Piglets" - Jay Harmon, ISU. Look for more information on the U of M Swine Extension website: Contact: Sarah Schieck, 320-589-1711 or

10 - Certification Classes: PQA Plus (9:00 a.m.-Noon) / TQA Training (1:00-4:00 p.m.), Minnesota Pork Board Office, Mankato, MN. Classes are free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

17-19 - Midwest Farm Energy Conference, West Central ROC, Morris, MN. Contact: Michael Reese, 320-589-1711 or

24 - Certification Class: PQA Plus (6:00 p.m.), Saint Olaf College, Valhalla Room, Northfield, MN. Class is free but pre-registration is requested; email or call 1-800-537-7675.

24-25 - Precision Dairy Conference & Expo, Mayo Civic Center, Rochester, MN.

- July -

12-16 -ADSA/ASAS Joint Annual Meeting, Orlando, FL