– Garth Ruff, ANR Extension Educator, OSU Henry County Extension
Q: What is BQA?
A: 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.
Q: I’ve Never Been BQA Certified, Why do it Now?
A: By 2019 Wendy’s has committed to sourcing beef from only BQA Certified producers and Tyson has pledged to follow suit, also by January 1, 2019. We expect other retailers and packers will do the same. Being BQA Certified will be a producer’s ticket to market access, much like the pork industry.
Q: Who Needs to be BQA Certified?
A: Anyone selling beef animals to be harvested for meat. This includes producers of fed beef, dairy beef, cull cows and bulls including dairy cull cows.
Q: What Do I Need to Do to Become BQA Certified?
A: 1) Attend a training session hosted by OSU Extension. Training dates and times are posted under EVENTS/PROGRAMS at beef.osu.edu. 2) Complete online BQA training at BQA.org. Either format will require a couple of hours’ time.
Q: How Long is My Certification Good For?
A: 3 years
Q: How Will the Cattle Buyer Know I am BQA Certified?
A: Upon completion of BQA you will receive a confirmation that you completed the certification. It is up to you to share that information with your local stockyards to relay to the cattle buyer or you can share with the buyer when in a direct marketing scenario.
Q: Where Can I Check My Certification Status?
A: A data base with all certified producers will be housed at the state beef council and maintained by the state BQA coordinators.