New co-ordinator for Verified Beef Production program

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Shannon Argent of Cremona is the new provincial co-ordinator for the national Verified Beef Production (VBP) program in Alberta. Argent will be managing education and on-farm audit services for cow-calf and feedlot producers participating in the national beef on-farm food safety program.

Formerly an animal health technician, Argent has also worked in both the genetics and communication sectors. She, along with her family, own a cow-calf operation northwest of Calgary. The program is in the midst of adding modules for biosecurity, animal care, and environmental stewardship.

“There are interesting changes coming and VBP is important to the beef industry,” said Argent.

“Our operation was VBP registered in 2012, meaning a third-party on-farm validation audit was completed to review practices conforming with the program. We feel there is a need to keep up with new developments for beef customers and the interesting additions coming.”

The Verified Beef Production program defines industry-sanctioned practices relating to on-farm food safety and soon in other areas. The trademarked program is owned by the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association, and defines low-cost standard practices for cow-calf, backgrounding and feedlot operations. Practices and expected outcomes are outlined in the VBP Producer Manual, available at verifiedbeef.org.

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