AGF Names New Board Members

on Dec 17 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News, News, News Releases

  ANNOUNCEMENT      December 17, 2013                                            


AGF Board of Directors Election – The American Goat Federation just concluded the 2013 election of new members to the board of directors.  Two new directors will be seated on the board at the Annual Meeting in Charleston, South Carolina on January 25, 2014.

Becky Sauder, from Carlsbad, Texas will be an at large director on the board.  She is employed by the USDA Livestock Market News Service in San Angelo, Texas, where she covers the market reports for the sheep and goat sale there, which is the largest sheep and goat sale in the United States.  She was initially involved in the research and development of the live guidelines that USDA has used for describing goats in market reports.  She also assisted in the IMPS developed for goat carcasses.  Becky has been involved in raising goats for almost thirty years, first commercial meat goats and then registered Boer goats. Along with her sister, she ran a fitting service and showed Boer goats all over the US.  They currently have a small herd of dairy goats in addition to Boer goats.  From 1993 to 1994 Becky served on the board of the American Meat Goat Association.

Vicki Stich, from New Albin, Iowa will be representing the American Boer Goat Association (ABGA) on the AGF Board.  She has been active in the ABGA for several years and is currently in her second term as a director on the ABGA Board. During her tenure on the ABGA Board she chaired the Breed Standards Committee and also assists the ABGA staff with the National Show every year.  In addition, she attended the National Goat Expo in 2012 and 2013 as a representative of the ABGA. In addition to serving on the ABGA board, Vicki raised and showed Boer goats for several years.

Returning AGF Directors are:  Linda Campbell from Virginia, Anita Dahnke from Indiana, Sam Abney from Alabama, Thomas Boyer from Utah, Bob Buchholz from Texas, Jan Carlson from California, Terry Hankins from Mississippi, and Dr. An Peischel from Tennessee.  The American Goat Federation is a national organization whose mission is to represent, unify, improve and advance the American goat industry and assist producers to achieve maximum success.    The AGF collects and makes available news of interest to all segments of the industry.  The AGF Facebook page contains up to the minute information about what the AGF is doing for the goat industry as well as what other agencies are engaged in that affect producers.

More information is available at



AGF Seeking Board Nominations

on Sep 11 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News, News, News Releases



For more information, contact:
Steve Lee:  202-350-9065

Linda Campbell:

September 10, 2013:  The American Goat Federation (AGF) is seeking nominations to fill as many as three directors positions on the AGF Board.   Directors serve three year terms and may run for reelection as many times as they desire.  Click Here for Nomination Form

The deadline for submitting information is September 30, 2013.    We ask that anyone considering running for one of these positions be willing and able to attend most meetings and actively participate as a member of the Board.

The current Board Members are:

Bob Buchholz, Texas [representing TX Goat & Sheep Producers]  . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2013

Dr. Will Getz (Vice President), Georgia   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  Term Expires 12-31-2013

Robin Saum (Treasurer), Ohio [representing ADGA]   . . . . . . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2013

Sam Abney, Alabama [representing ABGA]     . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2014

Linda Campbell (President), Virginia [representing ADGA]   . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2014

Anita Teel Dahnke (Secretary), Indiana [representing ABGA]   . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2014

Thomas Boyer, Utah   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2015

Jan Carlson, California    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2015

Terry Hankins, Mississippi   . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2015

Dr. An Peischel, Tennessee    . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Term Expires 12-31-2015

APHIS provides Guidance Document on RFID implants in goats

on May 29 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News, News, News Releases

Provided by:

Diane L. Sutton

National Scrapie Program Coordinator

National Center for Animal Health Programs

Veterinary Services

It has come to our attention that some goat registries are allowing the use of RFID implants for registry purposes that are not compliant with ISO standards 11784 and 11785. These standards require RFID implants for animals to be 15 digits including a 3 digit country or manufacturer code and to read at 134.2 kHz. While APHIS does not regulate what registries may use to identify goats for registration, it does determine what devices can be used for official identification. In order for a registered goat identified with an RFID to move in commerce without any other form of official identification, such as an eartag, guidance provided by APHIS in 2011 specified that:

1. Implants need to comply with the above ISO standards in order to be used as official identification,

2. Animals officially identified with implants must be accompanied by a copy of their registration certificate on which the RFID number is recorded, and a reader that can read the implant in the animal.


This guidance has been updated and is attached. It is also available online at:

Rather than disrupt stakeholder activities, APHIS has elected not to enforce the requirement that an implant be ISO compliant in order to be used as official identification until March 11,2014. This decision is consistent with the new traceability rule requirements for horses.

This means that any implant applied after this date not compliant with ISO standards 11784 and 11785 (15 digits includ ing a 3 digit country or manufacturer code and readable at 134.2 kHz) will not be acceptable as official identification. Further, any implants applied after March 11, 2015 will have to have the 840 country code, rather than a manufacturer code, in order to be used as official identification and will have to be approved by APHIS for use in goats.

Implants applied before these dates will be acceptable as official identification for the life of the animal as long as the other requirements are met.  A list of approved 840 implant and official eartag manufacturers is maintained at:

Animal Agriculture Coalition Makes Recommendations For 2013 Farm Bill

on Mar 05 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News, Legislative, News, News Releases

Animal Agriculture Coalition Makes Recommendations For 2013 Farm Bill


WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 1, 2013) – The Animal Agriculture Coalition (AAC) on Feb. 28 submitted its recommendations for the farm bill to the House and Senate Agriculture Committees.


“This past year Congress grappled to pass a farm bill that benefits all agriculture interests,” said Damon Wells, chairman of the Animal Agriculture Coalition. “It is critical that farm policy bolsters the long-term ability of U.S. animal agriculture to be competitive in the global marketplace and provides consumers around the world with safe, wholesome, affordable food that is produced in a sustainable manner. AAC’s recommendations will go a long way to achieving this objective.”


Congress needs to invest more resources on animal health, livestock, poultry, and aquaculture production, as well as in new animal products research. Expenditures for animal health are just 7 percent of those which are designated for human health research. Investment in animal health and production innovation for the world’s 25 billion chickens and turkeys, more than 1 billion cattle and sheep, 750 million pigs and goats, and more than 1 billion companion animals is grossly insufficient. To that end, the AAC believes that research and education productivity is hampered by insufficient funding for both the Agricultural Research Service and the National Institute for Food and Agriculture’s Agriculture, Food and Research Institute. To help bolster research, AAC supports establishing a Foundation for Food and Agricultural Research to supplement the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s basic and applied research activities.


AAC recommends reauthorizing several existing programs, namely the Market Access Program, Foreign Market Development Program, the National Poultry Improvement Plan, the Food Animal Residue Avoidance Databank, the Animal Health and Disease Research Program, the Trichinae Certification Program, and the National Aquatic Health Plan. The Coalition supports new authorizations to develop, implement, and sustain veterinary services; a new program to support research on animal drug needs in minor species; as well as a sheep production and marketing grant to strengthen and enhance the production and marketing of sheep and sheep products. AAC also supports a pilot study to assess the nature and extent of damage caused by feral swine.


AAC recommends that Congress optimize surveillance and surge capacity of the National Animal Health Laboratory Network by increasing the authorized funding needed to support the network. Obsolete individual surveillance labs need to be modernized to bring about diagnostic capabilities to conduct surveillance of the U.S. livestock population for all major foreign animal diseases of concern on a species by species basis.


“It is necessary for Congress and the federal government to renew its commitment to animal agriculture research and extension programs that translate into an affordable, high-quality food supply for consumers, said Wells. “The AAC urges Congress to pass a comprehensive five-year farm bill this year, as the agriculture industry cannot weather another temporary extension.”

The Animal Agriculture Coalition is comprised of most major animal and animal-related commodity organizations as well as allied organizations representing veterinary medicine, animal science and various livestock sectors or animal agriculture interests in the United States. It looks forward to working with you to ensure that farm policy benefits all agriculture interests.




OR: AGF Listening Session

on Feb 18 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News, News, News Releases


February 18, 2013

Steve Lee: 202-350-9065
Campbell: 540-743-4628

Clackamas, OR

– Jan Carlson, American Goat Federation (AGF) Director from Davis, California, will represent the AGF at the Northwest Oregon Dairy Goat Association Goat Education Conference on February 23. She has managed the University of California Davis Goat Facility for the past 13 years, in addition to teaching animal science/goat husbandry classes. Ms. Carlson will provide information to the expected 500 attendees about the AGF, who we are, who our members are, and what we have been doing and are planning to do in the future on behalf of goat owners nationwide. She will be at the AGF Booth during the event, and will collect information from producers about their needs and concerns regarding the goat industry.

This activity is being funded by the proceeds of a grant AGF received to conduct “Listening Sessions” and surveys at major goat industry events across the United States. AGF is soliciting feedback from producers about what their major concerns are, what factors will enhance their business, and how AGF can best represent them as members. The information being collected will assist AGF to develop strategic planning focus areas and provide information to the USDA and other government agencies about our industry.

The mission of the American Goat Federation includes the provision of educational information and resources to individual AGF members and member organizations. The mission extends to goat producers throughout the nation. We continue to conduct a membership drive, recruiting new members to increase our membership and give us an even stronger voice when representing all facets of the goat industry. The AGF Facebook page contains up to the minute information about what the AGF is doing for the goat industry as well as the activities of other agencies engaged in supporting animal agriculture.

More information is available at


AGF Board Meets in San Antonio

on Jan 30 in AGF Newsletters

The AGF Board held a very successful meeting in San Antonio on January 30, 2013.

Newly elected officers are: Linda Campbell, President; Will Getz, Vice President; Anita Dahnke, Secretary; Robin Saum, Treasurer.

American Goat Federation Annual Meeting
Hyatt Regency San Antonio, Texas
Saturday – January 26, 2013

The meeting was called to order by Linda Campbell, Vice President at 8:04 AM Central Standard Time. Linda welcomed all Board Members and visitors present.

Directors Will Getz, Treasurer, Sam Abney, Bob Buchholz, Jan Carlson, Anita Dahnke, Terry Hankins, and Robin Saum were Present. A Quorum was present.

Directors Tom Boyer, President, May Pryde, Secretary, and An Peischel were unable to be in attendance.

Steve Lee, Executive Secretary, was also present to facilitate the meeting.

Guests included Frank Pinkerton, Ervin Chavana, Joe David Ross, Diana Preiss, Christa Preiss, Becky Sauder, Nina Baucus, John Edwards, Brenda Seidensticker, Karen Stieler, John Kane, Lee Bloodworth, Gordon Shelangosh, Jackie Edwards, and Fred Vandermartin.

The Board reviewed the agenda and chose to change discussion and business until the afternoon session.

INFORMATION and UPDATES PRESENTATIONS: Scharee Atchison – NLPA Sheep and Goat Fund; Diane L. Sutton – APHIS – Update on Scrapie; Katherine Marshall – APHIS – Q-Fever update; Bryan Sayre – Virginia State University Overview and summary of Goat Genomics in US; Lawrence Yates – AMS – Update on official goat standards and grades; Judy Malone – ASI – FMD Cross Species Working Group; Frank Pinkerton – The Goat Man – How AGF can best serve the goat industry; Will Getz – AGF – The Goat Scene in Myanmar – Opportunities.

Business Meeting: 1:30 pm

Election of Officers: Sam Abney nominated Linda Campbell as Chairman. Anita Dahnke made the motion and Jan Carlson seconded that nominations cease and Linda Campbell be elected Chair. Motion carried.
Jan Carlson nominated Will Getz as Vice Chairman. Bob Buchholz made the motion and Terry Hankins seconded that nominations cease and Will Getz be elected Vice Chair. Motion carried.
Bob Buchholz made the motion and Sam Abney seconded that the position of Secretary and Treasurer be combined. Motion Carried.
After Board deliberation Bob Buchholz made the motion and Jan Carlson seconded that the previous motion be reconsidered. Motion carried.
Jan Carlson nominated Anita Dahnke as Secretary. Bob Buchholz made the motion and Terry Hankins seconded that nominations cease and Anita Dahnke be elected as Secretary. Motion carried.
Anita Dahnke nominated Robin Saum as Treasurer. Bob Buchholz made the motion and Sam Abney seconded that nominations cease and Robin Saum be elected as Treasurer. Motion carried.

Minutes of December 27, 2012 Conference Call Meeting: Sam Abney made the motion and Robin Saum seconded that the minutes of the December 27 Conference Call meeting be approved. Motion Carried.

Financial Status Report & Budget: Bob Buchholz made the motion and Anita seconded that the financial report as presented be approved. Motion carried. Jan Carlson made the motion and Bob Buchholz seconded that the budget prepared and amended by the Board be approved. Motion carried.

Review and update Strategic Plan: The Board reached a consensus that the new members of the Board need to be afforded an opportunity to provide input to the Strategic Plan for this year and discussion would be delayed until the next conference call Board Meeting. Steve Lee will send out the Plan arrived at by the Board at the Louisville meeting.

Plan execution dates for Grant Project: The Board discussed various meetings and dates for inclusion in the Grant Project education and listening sessions. Anita will get together a
calendar and propose Board members to be in charge of that particular session.

Committee reports and assignments: Tom Boyer’s report as president in 2012 was read. The Board discussed communications, news releases, and possible changes to the Membership Directory for better identification of segments of the industry as well as increased outreach within the industry to gain support from individual producers. The Board will be considering who will be assigned to the Task Force for Goat Grading as requested by USDA.

Adjourn: There being no further business at this time, Bob Buchholz made the motion and Sam Abney seconded that the meeting be adjourned. Motion carried. Meeting adjourned at 5:25 pm. Central Standard Time.

Respectfully submitted,
Anita Dahnke, Secretary
American Goat Federation

Thanks to all who attended the meeting.

San Antonio: AGF 2013 Meeting

on Jan 11 in AGF Newsletters, Events, Industry News, News Releases

AGF2013Annual Meeting Announcement

January 7, 2013


Tom Boyer: 801.376.4685

SanAntonio, TX

– The American Goat Federation (AGF) will hold its annual Board of Directors and membership meeting on January 26 in San Antonio, TX. The meeting will convene at 8:00 AM Saturday morning in the Blanco Room of the Hyatt Regency. The morning session will consist of presentations by various speakers. There will be a break for lunch and the afternoon session will begin at 1:30 PM. All members of AGF and members of AGF member organizations are invited to attend.

Schedule for the Annual Meeting

8:00 AM Brief Opening Business Meeting

8:20 AM Presentation by Scharee Atchison from the NLPA Sheep and Goat Fund

8:30 AM Presentation by Diane L Sutton from APHIS. Dr. Sutton will provide an

update on the scrapie program.

8:45 AM Presentation by Katherine Marshall from APHIS. Dr. Marshall will provide

an update on Q-fever.

9:00 AM Presentation by Dr. Bryan Sayre from Virginia Tech University. Dr. Sayer

will give an overview and summary of Goat Genomics in the United States.

9:45 AM Break

10:00 AM Dr. Lawrence Yates, Livestock Marketing Specialist of AMS will provide an

update on the official goat standards and grades.

10:30 AM Dr. Will Getz, AGF Director will provide information about opportunities in

the Goat Scene in Myanmar.

11:00 AM Judy Malone from ASI will provide information about the FMD Cross

Species Working Group.

1:30 PM Dr. Frank Pinkerton, the Goat Man, will discuss how AGF can best serve the goat industry.

2:00 PM Business Meeting

The American Goat Federation is a national organization that represents all segments of the goat industry, including meat, dairy and fiber. More information is available at #


2012 AGF Membership Drive

on Apr 10 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News, News Releases

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE    April 9, 2012                                               

Steve Lee:  202-350-9065 

Tom Boyer: 801-376-4685 

Tom Boyer, President of the Board of the American Goat Federation (AGF) announced today the kick off of the 2012 AGF Membership Drive.  Since the first of the year the AGF has revamped the website and redesigned their Facebook page with announcements of current activity and information of interest to all segments of the goat industry being posted weekly.  An Executive Secretary, Steve Lee, has been hired to serve the needs of the federation and its members.  Membership renewal packets have been sent to existing members and a system is now in place whereby members of the Board of Directors can make themselves available as time permits to speak to organizations interested in learning more about what the AGF can do for their members.

The members of the AGF Board represent a cross section of the American goat industry and bring a varied set of strengths and backgrounds into play in serving all segments of the industry:  dairy, fiber and meat as well as vegetation management.

Tom Boyer, President of AGF, is a third generation sheep and goat seed stock rancher from Utah and owner/operator of TVB Management Company, a leading management, consulting and appraisal firm serving agriculture around the world.  Linda Campbell, Vice President of AGF, is a goat producer and active exporter of goats, having shipped goats to over thirty-two countries.   She has been involved with dairy and meat goats for over forty years at her organic farming operation that is also an Agri-Tourism business in Virginia, as well as having owned and operated a commercial goat dairy for twenty five years.  Mary Pryde, Secretary of AGF, and her husband own and manage Prydelands Ranch Alpine and Boer Goats in Redding, California, as well as Enterprise Health Foods and Enterprise Feed in Northern California.  Dr. Will Getz, Treasurer of AGF, is an Extension Specialist and Professor of Animal Science at Fort Valley State University in Georgia.  He advises university staff on meat goat herd and sheep flock management and works with dairy goat owners in the state, and has worked professionally in international animal agriculture development for over twenty years, including work with goat and sheep programs in more than thirty countries.

The remainder of the Board of Directors of the AGF is made up of the following people.

Sam Abney, who serves on the AGF Membership/Marketing committee, raises Boer goats with his wife on their 40 acre farm in Alabama. He was instrumental in helping develop a handbook for goat producers, copies of which are distributed at shows, auctions, seminars and personal contact with prospective producers.   Jan Carlson, Chair of the AGF Education/Research committee, is from Davis, California and has managed the University of California Davis Goat Facility for the past twelve years, maintaining breeding-teaching-research herds of 150 goats (45 dairy, 45 Boer, and the rest transgenic research goats).    She also teaches goat husbandry/animal science classes both in the classroom and at the goat facility.   Anita Dahnke, Chair of the AGF Communications committee, is a partner in S&A Farms specializing in Boer goat breeding stock and meat goat show wethers and seed stock for commercial goat producers since 2000.   She is a professional writer who also co-owns Wabash Valley Feed & Western Wear in Indiana.   Dr.  Gil Engdahl, who serves on the AGF Education/Research committee, is head of the Agriculture Department and professor of Animal Science, as well as director of the Management, Instruction and Research Center at Angelo State University.  He currently oversees the sheep, goat, and cattle operations of the Angelo State University ranch.  Robin Saum is a partner with her husband in the Saum family farm, which is a diversified sustainable farm producing field crops, hogs, goats, and seasonal produce and Christmas trees.  She continues the use of her grandmother’s Snowflake herd name prefix in a small select herd of fifteen to twenty Saanen dairy goats that she also shows.

The Board includes representation from all sectors of the goat industry as well as from major goat associations who are founding members of the AGF.   Sam Abney, and Anita Dahnke were nominated by the American Boer Goat Association (ABGA).  Linda Campbell and Robin Saum were nominated by the American Dairy Goat Association (ADGA) and are both past presidents of ADGA.  Dr. Gil Engdahl was nominated by the Texas Sheep and Goat Raisers Association.    The other board members were nominated and elected by the AGF membership.

If you would like to have a representative of the American Goat Federation speak to your group or association, please feel free to contact the director closest to your region, or you can get in touch with our President or Executive Secretary.   Detailed biographical information on each Director of the AGF can be found on the American Goat Federation website.  There is also a calendar page that shows where AGF representatives will be during the 2012 year.  Anyone interested in joining AGF is invited to contact any of the board members, or our office.  There is a membership application form available on the website to download, as well as an electronic application form that can be filed out and paid for online.

The American Goat Federation is a national organization developed to represent and speak with one voice for all segments of the goat industry, including meat, dairy and fiber.   There are more than 200 organizations and thousands of producers engaged in the sustainable production and marketing of goat milk, meat, fiber and grazing services across the United States. The Federation seeks to enhance growth of the industry by not only representing all areas of production within the industry, but also by being a central clearinghouse for reliable information about the industry and all issues affecting its members.

More information is available at

Report from AGF President Tom Boyer on ARS/NIFA Conference

on Jul 25 in AGF Newsletters, Industry News

Summary of ARS/NIFA Stakeholder Meeting

Baltimore, MD

March 28-30, 2011

The meeting included three stakeholder groups, Scientists, Universities and Producers.  The producer group was the smallest of the three.  The keynote speeches were based on the recent history and present situation of both ARS and NIFA.  As you might guess, animal agriculture receives only a small portion of the total dollars [20%] versus the plant sector which receives 80%.

The introductory session included warnings of the dire economic situation and shrinking budgets for agricultural research and grants.  Thus priorities will be required to allot the funds available.  Priorities will include Biofuels, Climate Change, Childhood Obesity, Food Safety & Education for Frontline Production.  Strategies will include New Products, Enhancement of Productivity and Health, Feed Efficiency, Greenhouse Emissions, Market Performance & Minority Producers including Women.  Growing fields in agriculture include Veterinary Entomology [Insects and Ticks etc.], Vaccine Development, Foreign Animal Disease Control, Nutrient Utilization and Animal Informatics.  There is a disconnect between seed stock and commercial sectors.

The first breakout session resulted in both Sheep and Goats being in one group for initial discussions regarding industry assessment of needs and direction for the future.  The sheep portion of the meeting was under the direction of Paul Rodgers and the goat section was under the direction of Sandra Solaiman.  I started the discussion with my thoughts regarding the need for Genomic research, as I see that as being the major tool to advance the industry forward in a major way.  Other topics included the need for research on the digestive processes and functions about which very little is currently known.  The goat group was then split off from the sheep into another room where we continued our discussions.  There were only 4 of us in the goat group, Gary Newton from Prairie View A&M in Texas, an ARS researcher from Washington DC, the group leader Dr Souilman and me.  Again we started with the need for Genomic Research in Goats as very little has been done either nationally or internationally.  Our next topic was the need to evaluate our industry including

  1. Production Systems – Sustainable Production Systems including Targeted Grazing, Co-grazing, Natural and Organic Production and Natural Resource Utilization and Improvement, Genomics to Phenomics, Domestic versus International Production Systems
  2. Marketing Channels and Processes – Direct Marketing, Food Safety,
  3. Transportation
  4. Animal Well Being
  5. Housing and Handling Systems

These ideas were recorded and I made the presentation to the group.  There was consensus that AGF should begin planning and sponsor a National Goat meeting in 2012.

The second breakout sessions then began and I chose to attend the Forage Session.  Where the major points of future direction centered on:

  1. Digestive Processes and Capabilities of Plant utilization – Microbial Host Interaction in Digestion
  2. Increasing Plant utilization and palatability – Delayed Maturity of Plants is needed – Phenology of Plants to keep them in the vegetative state and improve plant persistence.
  3. Grazing Strategies for maximum plant utilization – Rangeland Ecology
  4. Research of animal genetics for complete finishing on forage

The third breakout session I attended was on Genomics.  I was most anxious to attend this session as I desired to know of the current status of this research and potential future contributions to the animal industry.  It was a rather discouraging session as I learned that while cattle and pigs are now genetically mapped and the sheep is in the process, There is not a viable way to utilize the genetic information as there is not a data base large enough to store and provide access to the tremendous amount of information needed to implement the genetic tools into management.  Further, there is very little programming that has been done to solicit the genetic information from the data base.  After lengthy discussions, I asked what I could tell US Goat Producers to expect in the near future regarding Genomic Research… the answer was probably not a great deal.  The one piece of good news is the price of genetic mapping is coming down in a major way which will likely result in the goat getting mapped at some point in the near future.  As the software and data bases are developed, it is likely the goat industry will benefit from the pioneering work the other species are now doing and the work that has been going on in the plant world for the past decade.  Again the downside is that both Sheep and Goats will not benefit from genomic research as soon as desired.

I made the following contacts at this meeting:

  • Gary Newton – Gary is a researcher and instructor at Prairie View A&M in Texas who is very interested in AGF and being part of both our membership as well as the research team.  His associate Lou Nutti is also very interested and would like to be put on the research team.  Both of these individuals will be very valuable to us as we move forward.  I do not have contact information on Lou yet but Gary’s contact information is Phone – 936-261-5036 and his email is
  • Charlotte Kirk Bauer – Charlotte is a great contact for us at NIFA.  She knew about us as Larry Hill has visited with her about our needs for grants to get us established as the industry organization.  She is very helpful and offered numerous ideas for us to move forward.  She will be a very valuable contact for the Grant Team as well as the Research Group.  Contact information is office phone – 202-720-5280, Cell: 240-691-7320 and email is
  • John Weldon Finley – My first impression of this guy was that he was a scientist that kept taking us off course in our break out session.  Finally, I came to understand that his vision was coming from his background as a scientist who knows what will have a chance of getting funded and that which has no chance.  I came to appreciate his insight and wisdom and again he will make a valuable resource for us as we move forward.  Contact Information – Phone – 301-504-5381, Email –
  • Kreg  Leymaster – Kreg is a scientist at MARC center in Nebraska.  I have known Kreg for several years and have found him to be a very capable and production oriented researcher.  He could well be a front line person for research projects on production issues.  Phone – 402-762-4172.
  • Michael Brown – Mike is a research scientist that does some work with sheep in Oklahoma and does work in China with sheep and goats.  He will make a good resource for research projects both nationally and internationally.  Phone – 405-262-5291, email

The American Goat Federation is gaining recognition and respect throughout the animal world as a result of you folks on the Board.  You are well known and well respected and it is gratifying to both work with you and move the organization forward.  There was continued talk at this meeting about the price of corn.  We were continually reminded of the impact that is likely to impact animal production in the coming years from the food-fuel –animal production balancing act in grains.  I reminded them, that setting aside the dairy goat milk production systems… goats do well on forage based production systems.  Surely this is a theme we can use to our benefit.  It is important that we utilize the resources identified in this meeting to assist us as we move forward.  I am happy to make contacts and connect any of these folks to your committees.  Just keep me informed as to how I can help you.

AGF President Tom Boyer Attends NIAA Conference

on Jul 25 in AGF Newsletters

NIAA Meeting – San Antonio

Consumers’ Stake in Today’s Food Production

AGF again received good reviews from involvement in this meeting.    Several new contacts were made and our involvement in a council has been requested.

The meeting centered on feeding the world safely today as well as in 2050 when we will need to double food production from 2010.  Dr. Robert Southgate from Ohio State University indicated world population growth has moved from 2.5 B in 1950 to 6 B in 2000 and is projected to be 9 B in 2050.  Historically food and crop production has increased faster than the population growth so there has been no problem.  Now the problem starts to become more dire as there is very little increase in crop land acreage available, leaving the increases to come through production per acre.  Competing for acreage currently are biofuels and crops for livestock and human consumption.  Water will become a major limiting factor in production increases.

The Sheep and Goat Session included presentations from Kirk Braedon, Angelo State University on the current lamb industry and lamb consumption.  Lamb will need to be made available in table ready packaging to increase per capita consumption and utilization of lower quality cuts is imperative to provide maximum consumption in main stream America.  The new consumer is not averse to Lamb as they have grown up in a home where lamb was not consumed and they are looking for a new red meat.  Both Lamb and Goat provide good opportunity for this consumer.  Currently 37% of lamb consumed is channeled through the Food Service Industry.  Other presentations included Food Safety by Loree Branham of Angelo State University regarding the importance of keeping lamb and goat meat safe and free from food borne illness problems associated with some other food products.  Dr. Joe Garrett talked about the Scrapie Program and the good progress that has been made in reducing the disease.  The current plan is for complete eradication in 2017.  The Small Ruminant Business meeting followed where we talked about the critical need to keep Scrapie Disease funding in place through 2017 in order to not lose the gains resulting from the millions of dollars of research and program administration expended to this point.  A resolution was passed reflecting this serious need.

I received a call from Allan Huddleston with APHIS right after this meeting indicating the recent budget resolution will eliminate a portion of the Scrapie Budget resulting in the need to either eliminate the Complete Monitored Level of the Volunteer Program or the movement of the annual inspection from the Federal and State levels to the private level with the producer covering this annual expense.  It may well be that both will result as the budget cuts continue to be made.

Other presentations included Animal Welfare and Carbon Footprint issues for the future.  Presenters included Charlie Arnot with the Center for Food Integrity [Great Presenter], Rod Smith from Feedstuffs Magazine [Investigations of HSUS Investigations – another great presentation] and Carrie Lee [Anchor FiOS1 News, Long Island, New York]  She gave a very interesting presentation including interviews with New York Consumers on the Street who have zero understanding as to where their food comes from.  There were numerous other speakers and breakout sessions covering a variety of issues related to Food Safety, Animal Welfare, Emerging Diseases, Animal ID, Traceability, FMD Outbreak Potential, Elements of a Stable Food Supply.

Contacts made included Dr Lenard Bull – Len was instrumental in early efforts to start a national goat industry organization.  We called an exploratory meeting a decade ago that Len hosted at the University of North Carolina.  We called a second meeting in Dallas with such poor attendance that we abandoned the effort.  We did not have the right folks on the team.  Dr. Bull has strong interest in seeing that we are successful.  Other contacts included Cindy Wolf DVM that many of you know.  She is a leading sheep and goat vet in Minnesota.  Travis Hoffman is a sheep producer who works at Colorado State University who has interest in assisting us where he can.  Paul Rodgers is also a good advocate for both sheep and goats and related issues.

This venue is a great channel for interaction with other livestock groups and to get our message out to the animal production sector.  This is a meeting we should continue to support and attend.