OCA Young Cattlemen’s Conference provides industry learning experience


MARYSVILLE, Ohio — The 2017 Ohio Cattlemen’s Foundation Young Cattlemen’s Conference (YCC) hosted 25 cattlemen and women for a 3-day leadership development program in Columbus and the central Ohio areas, August 10-12. The conference was made possible by Farm Credit Mid-America and the Ohio Soybean Council.

YCC kicked off Thursday evening at the Legends Lane Reproductive Services in Alexandria with a beef dinner and participants were present for the 2017 Ohio State Fair Commercial Cattle Show carcass contest awards presentation. Guest speaker, Colin Woodall, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, National Cattlemen’s Association (NCBA), gave attendees a Washington, D.C. policy update on the issues that the industry is facing.

Conference attendees also participated in a spokesperson training program by Ryan Goodman, Director of Grassroots Advocacy and Spokesperson Development, NCBA. Goodman lead participants through a media training session that strengthened their communication skills, taught attendees how to tell their beef production story, and become a more effective cattle industry leader.

Ohio Beef Council staff led a discussion regarding its role in checkoff collection and beef promotional efforts in Ohio. OCA staff also discussed the value of membership and the role OCA has in legislative and regulatory issues.

Participants had the opportunity to have lunch at Cameron Mitchell’s The Pearl restaurant to learn about current checkoff funded beef promotions. Following lunch, participants traveled to the Ohio State House where they met with Representative Brian Hill (District 97). Representative Hill, who chairs the House Agricultural and Rural Development Committee, spoke about current Ohio legislation affecting the beef cattle industry and answered questions from the group.

The final day included a session with Dr. Lyda Garcia, Assistant Professor at The Ohio State University Department of Animal Sciences, for a Mini-BEEF 509 class. Dr. Garcia provided hands-on learning on how meat is graded, fabrication of wholesale and retail cuts, and other issues that can affect beef quality and pricing. Participants also viewed champion carcasses from the 2017 Ohio State Fair.

A special tour of the Ohio State University Woody Hayes Athletic Center was a highlight of the program thanks to a continuing relationship between OCA and the OSU football team. Participants learned about the history of OSU football and walked through training and practice facilities. YCC participants wrapped up their morning with a state of the beef industry update with John Grimes, OSU Extension Beef Coordinator.

The purpose of the YCC is to offer emerging Ohio beef industry leaders and young producers the opportunity to build their own leadership skills as they network with beef industry leaders, government officials, businesses and media. Young beef producers interested in attending the 2018 YCC should contact the Ohio Cattlemen’s Foundation at 614-873-6736 or email beef@ohiobeef.org.

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Staff report