Date: 4/3/2014 12:00:00 AM

Title: Summer Policy Conference will feature animal handling, Carcass Challenge awards

The Summer Policy Conference will be held in Ames, June 5-6, 2014. Activities at the event will be held at the new Hansen Agriculture Student Learning Center that opened in January.

On Thursday, June 5, the focus will squarely be on cattle. An animal handling demonstration and discussion will kick-off the meeting at 1 p.m. At 5 p.m., the ICA Steer Carcass Challenge reception and awards banquet will begin.

There are 68 steers in the Carcass Challenge, and the winners of several different awards will be announced that night. This is the third year of the contest, and this year’s contest features an expansion of awards.
There will be five top awards in a category that looks at Retail Value per Days on Feed (RVDoF). Carcass contest will be based on a carcass value per day on feed formula, with cash prizes of 1st - $750; 2nd - $500; and 3rd through 5th each $250. All five places will receive a jacket and hats.

Carcass Merit awards will also be given. These will rank the steers on grid price per pound, with discount allowances for small ribeye areas, low average daily gain, and excessive trimming. The top five entries in this area receive cash prizes of 1st- $750; 2nd - $500; and 3rd through 5th, each $250. Jackets and hats will also be awarded to this group.

In addition, individual awards will be given to the steers with the highest ADG (average daily gain) , largest REA (ribeye area), the top marbling score, and the chef award, which is for a 12-14” ribeye with the highest marbling score. Each of these winners will receive $250 and a jacket.

On Friday, June 6, the day will be filled educational sessions and policy development discussions. ICA’s policy development is a grassroots effort that begins with the Summer Policy Conference. There, ideas will be vetted and discussed before they are offered to members at the December ICA annual meeting.

“Your attendance at the Summer Policy Conference is important for full member engagement on policy discussions and development,” said Justine Stevenson, ICA Director of Government Relations and Public Policy. “I encourage ICA members to attend this event if they are interested in policy issues that impact Iowa cattle producers.

ICA has reserved blocks of rooms for June 5 at the Best Western Hotel and the Gateway Hotel, both in Ames. (Members must make their reservations soon since the World Pork Expo is being held on those same dates, and Ames hotels are in high demand at that time.)

The rate at the Best Western is $99 for a King, and $109 for two Queens. Rates only apply if reservation are made by May 5. Call 515-296-2500 and reference ICA Summer Policy Conference.

The rate at the Gateway Hotel & Conference Center is $109 for two Queens. That rate only applies is the reservation is made by May 15. Call 515-292-8600 and, again, reference ICA Summer Policy Conference.