I was pleased to read this article. Many people believe that animals are not handled properly and that the agriculture industry is not doing enough about this problem. This is a great example of how they are rewarding producers for good handling.
The buckles were sponsored by Pfizer and included eight teams, including one from Ontario! The scoring of this competition was spilt into three categories; pen checking, chute processing and a written component. The main weighing of scores being on how low stress the teams handled their animals.
The competition was held near Picture Butte, AB at the Shooten and Sons Farms. One aspect of the competition had the handlers separate calves into groups to be treated. For a further challenge, they marked specific animals to cut out of the herd that needed further treatment.
|The winners posing with their buckles.|
(L-R) Shane Broeders, Travis Klassen, Sandy Debruin and Trevor Burks.
The winners were Acme Highway 21 Feeders Inc who won belt buckles for their low stress cattle handling.
I think this is a prime example of what the Agriculture industry is doing to promote low stress handling to their producers. It also demonstrates how far this competition is spreading, that a team from Ontario made the trek down to Alberta to compete.