History of USDA meat grading documents uncovered

Beef carcasses
USDA meat grading

USDA meat grading

USDA meat grading continues to be a topic of great interest for many, and our link on USDA beef grading has been our most viewed webpage for many years. Davey Griffin, while cleaning out a folder in his desk, found these two documents about the history of meat grading, one written by L.B. Burk in November, 1944, and one by an unknown author who we think was Charles E. Murphey, who was a former USDA Agricultural Marketing Service official and who began and ended his career at Texas A&M University.

Beef carcasses

Beef carcasses

We hope that these documents will be of interest to those who wish to know more about the advent and early days of USDA grading.

History of Meat Grading 1944 by LB Burk

History of Beef Grading – author unknown

Clay Eastwood receives ANSC Award for Outstanding PhD Graduate Student

Clay Eastwood receiving Outstanding PhD Award
Clay Eastwood receiving Outstanding PhD Award

Clay Eastwood

Clay Eastwood, a PhD candidate in the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University, received the ANSC Award for Outstanding PhD Graduate Student, at the Animal Science Awards Banquet on Thursday, April 26, 2018. This is the first year for this award with selection criteria based on evidence of excellence in academics, research, teaching, and service/outreach.

Vice Chancellor and Dean, Mark Hussey and Clay Eastwood

Vice Chancellor and Dean, Mark Hussey and Clay Eastwood

Clay Eastwood at ICoMST in Clermont-Ferrand, France

Clay Eastwood at ICoMST in Clermont-Ferrand, France

Clay has been recognized many times for her accomplishments during her graduate program. Most recently, she received the Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for Graduate Student Teaching in 2018, and she received the Dean’s Outstanding Achievement Award for Graduate Teaching in 2016. Clay was honored with the Association of Former Students Distinguished Graduate Student Award for Excellence in Teaching. In 2014, Clay received two graduate student awards: the Ronnie L. Edwards Graduate Student Teaching Award, in recognition of her important contributions as a graduate student to the undergraduate student experience, and the Z. L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science, presented annually to a graduate student who demonstrates outstanding leadership skills and has contributed significantly to the Meat Science Section’s teaching, research, and extension activities. Finally, Clay received the Gamma Sigma Delta Outstanding Graduate Student Award and was inducted into the Gamma Sigma Delta International Honor Society of Agriculture.

Z.L. Carpenter and Clay Eastwood

Z.L. Carpenter and Clay Eastwood

Dr. Karen L. Butler-Purry, Associate Provost for Graduate and Professional Studies, Clay Eastwood, and Marty Holmes, Vice President, The Association of Former Students

Dr. Karen L. Butler-Purry, Associate Provost for Graduate and Professional Studies, Clay Eastwood, and Marty Holmes, Vice President, The Association of Former Students

Ashley Corona and Clay Eastwood collecting carcass data (photo by Davey Griffin)

Ashley Corona and Clay Eastwood collecting carcass data (photo by Davey Griffin)

Clay is from New Braunfels, Texas and received both her Bachelor’s degree (2011) and Master’s degree (2014) in Animal Science from Texas A&M University. She is currently finishing her PhD focusing on fresh meat quality, food safety, and sustainability under the guidance of Dr. Jeff Savell and Dr. Kerri Gehring in the Department of Animal Science. Clay has taught ANSC 307, Meats, and has served as a graduate teaching assistant for ANSC 437, Livestock and Meat Marketing and ANSC 117, Texas Barbecue for several semesters during her graduate career. These classes provide students with intensive hands-on learning opportunities related to their field. In addition, Clay has coached the Meat Science Quiz Bowl Team, which required her to recruit and train each team to compete nationally.

Nickelson, Emily Mahalitc, and Baylee Bessire; Back row, Clay Eastwood (coach), Ty Robertson, Micki Gooch, Jordan Hevner, Dylan Tucker, and Courtney Boykin (assistant coach)

2016 Texas A&M University Meat Science Quiz Bowl Team. Front row, Catherine Guillotte, Brogan Horton, Katy Jo Nickelson, Emily Mahalitc, and Baylee Bessire; Back row, Clay Eastwood (coach), Ty Robertson, Micki Gooch, Jordan Hevner, Dylan Tucker, and Courtney Boykin (assistant coach)

Clay Eastwood

Clay Eastwood

Clay Eastwood at the International Congress of Meat Science and Technology, Cork, Ireland

Clay Eastwood at the International Congress of Meat Science and Technology, Cork, Ireland

Congratulations to Clay for her receiving this award and for her passion for teaching, research, and extension/outreach!

Jill Jobe receives ANSC Award for Outstanding MSc Graduate Student

Jill Jobe
Jill Jobe

Jill Jobe

Jill Jobe, a master of science candidate in the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University, received the ANSC Award for Outstanding MSc Graduate Student, at the Animal Science Awards Banquet on Thursday, April 26, 2018. This is the first year for this award with selection criteria based on evidence of excellence in academics, research, teaching, and service/outreach.

Jill Jobe

Jill Jobe

Jill is from Shawnee, Kansas and received her B.S. degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia before she began her graduate program at Texas A&M University working with Drs. Kerri Gehring, Jeff Savell, and Steve Smith. At the University of Missouri-Columbia, she excelled both academically and extracurricularly.

Jill Jobe

Jill Jobe

Jill has taught ANSC 307, “Meats,” laboratories and has assisted with lectures in both the regular and honors sections of the class. She has has been very active in the extension programs conducted in the department including Beef 101, Beef 706, Pork 101, Barbecue Summer Camp, Camp Brisket, Creative Sausage Making, and Youth Adventure Program. These activities require both extensive knowledge and dedication to teaching because of the wide range of experiences and interests that the people possess who attend.

Jill Jobe and Beef 101 group

Jill Jobe and Beef 101 group

Jill Jobe with Beef 101 participant

Jill Jobe with Beef 101 participant

Jill’s primary research has focused on insulin sensitivity and metabolism in bovine muscle tissue treated with beta-agonists. This research has required her to work with a wide range of activities and procedures, which has stretched her to learn more than most M.S. students are required to learn. This area is now of such interest that she wants to focus on muscle growth and fat deposition as she moves towards working on a Ph.D. after her masters.

Congratulations to Jill for receiving this wonderful award!

 

 

Harris, Laird, and Nickelson receive Carpenter Award

Z.L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science
Z.L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science, Carpenter Award

Z.L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science

McKensie Harris, Hannah Laird, and Katy Jo Nickelson received the Z.L. Carpenter Outstanding Graduate Student Award in Meat Science at the Animal Science Awards Banquet on Thursday, April 26, 2018. The Carpenter Award is named in honor of Dr. Zerle L. Carpenter who began his career at Texas A&M University as an assistant professor of animal science in 1962. Dr. Carpenter rose to become full professor of animal science in 1971, head of the Department of Animal Science in 1978, and director of the Texas Agricultural Extension Service (now the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service) in 1982. In 1988, he was named associate vice chancellor for agriculture for The Texas A&M University System. Dr. Carpenter retired in 1997 after providing leadership for the Extension Service for 15 years.

McKensie Harris leading Beef 101 group

McKensie Harris leading Beef 101 group

McKensie Harris speaking at the National Beef Quality Audit – 2016 Strategy Workshop

McKensie Harris speaking at the National Beef Quality Audit – 2016 Strategy Workshop

McKensie Harris is from Laramie, Wyoming where she received her undergraduate degree from the University of Wyoming. McKensie began her master’s work at Texas A&M University in the fall of 2015 under the direction of Jeff Savell. She served as the assistant coach of the Meat Judging Team in 2016 and as the coach of the team in 2017. McKensie led the market cow and bull phase of the National Beef Quality Audit – 2016, and conducted a study on the evaluation of postmortem aging of Texas-style beef briskets. During her time at Texas A&M University, she helped with Beef 101, Beef 706, Pork 101, Texas Aggie Processed Meats School, Barbecue Summer Camp, and various 4-H and FFA meat judging activities. McKensie served as an ANSC 307, “Meats” lab instructor and as a teaching assistant for ANSC 317. She graduated December 2017 and is now employed as a livestock extension specialist for Colorado State University.

Hannah Laird

Hannah Laird

Hannah Laird helping a participant learn to use the stuffer.

Hannah Laird helping a participant learn to use the stuffer

Hannah Laird is from Dickinson, Texas and received her undergraduate degree from Baylor University. She is working on her Ph.D. here at Texas A&M University with Rhonda Miller after receiving her M.S. degree here also. Hannah teaching activities include leading the lab for ANSC 447, “Advanced Meat Science and Technology,” and helping with lecture and labs for ANSC 487/687, “Sensory Evaluation of Foods.” She maintains, trains, and leads an experienced trained sensory panel using the Spectrum™ Descriptive Analysis Method, which conducts research on meat products such as beef, pork, lamb, and chicken, and beverages such as whiskey, coffee, and wine. Hannah also conducts research relating to color, shelf-life, and sensory effects of antimicrobial and antioxidants treatments on ground beef and chicken. She is the Sensory Society of Professionals Student Representative to the executive board, and has led various activities in Beef 101, Beef 706, Pork 101, Zoetis Beef University, Kroger Boot Camp, Texas Aggie Meat Processing School, and Creative Sausage Making. Hannah has served as a judge for the Texas Association of Meat Processors product show.

Katy Jo Nickelson discussing beef quality and yield grades for Beef 101

Katy Jo Nickelson discussing beef quality and yield grades for Beef 101

Katy Jo Nickelson working with ANSC 117, Texas Barbecue

Katy Jo Nickelson working with ANSC 117, Texas Barbecue

Katy Jo Nickelson is from Fort Worth, Texas, and she received her undergraduate degree in animal science from Texas A&M University. She began working on her M.S. degree under the direction of Kerri Gehring and Jeff Savell in the fall of 2016. Katy Jo’s teaching activities have included ANSC 307 “Meats,” ANSC 108, “General Animal Science,” and ANSC 117, “Texas Barbecue.” Katy Jo is the coach of this year’s Meat Science Quiz Bowl team, which will compete at the American Meat Science Association’s Reciprocal Meat Conference in June. Her research activities have focused on food safety/microbiology with her thesis project conducted on the presence of Salmonella in lymph nodes of cattle from the U.S. and Mexico. Katy Jo has been involved in a number of food safety and government policy activities including serving as a participant in the Domestic Crisis Strategic Response Exercise, U.S. Army War College, the research committee, MSC SCONA (Student Conference on National Affairs), and as an intern for the Agricultural and National Resources Policy Program in Washington, DC. She has been an instructor for Beef 101, Beef 706, Pork 101, Barbecue Summer Camp, Camp Brisket, and other departmental extension/outreach program throughout her program. Katy Jo will be attending the Bush School of Public Service beginning in the fall of 2018 to pursue a master’s program there.

Congratulations to McKensie, Hannah, and Katy Jo for receiving the Carpenter Award for 2017.

Scientific articles from National Beef Quality Audit – 2016

National Beef Quality Audit – 2016
National Beef Quality Audit – 2016

National Beef Quality Audit – 2016

The National Beef Quality Audit – 2016 marks the 25th year since the original National Beef Quality Audit was conducted and represents the opportunity for the beef industry to assess factors that impact the quality, quantity, and value of cattle, carcasses, and by-products. The audit is funded by the Beef Checkoff and is managed by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association through the Beef Quality Assurance program.

Josh Hasty, Colorado State University

Josh Hasty, Colorado State University

These are the scientific articles from this past audit, and they are open access so they are available to the public without cost. Click on the links associated with each article to go the website for the abstract or full article.

Ashley Corona and Clay Eastwood collecting carcass data (photo by Davey Griffin)

Ashley Corona and Clay Eastwood collecting carcass data (photo by Davey Griffin)

Larry Meadows, Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA, and Courtney Boykin

Larry Meadows, Agricultural Marketing Service, USDA, and Courtney Boykin

McKensie Harris and John Paterson

McKensie Harris and John Paterson

Scientific articles from the National Beef Quality Audit – 2016

Eastwood, L. C., C. A. Boykin, M. K. Harris, A. N. Arnold, D. S. Hale, C. R. Kerth, D. B. Griffin, J. W. Savell, K. E. Belk, D. R. Woerner, J. D. Hasty, R. J. Delmore, Jr., J. N. Martin, T. E. Lawrence, T. J. McEvers, D. L. VanOverbeke, G. G. Mafi, M. M. Pfeiffer, T. B. Schmidt, R. J. Maddock, D. D. Johnson, C. C. Carr, J. M. Scheffler, T. D. Pringle, and A. M. Stelzleni. 2017. National Beef Quality Audit-2016: Transportation, mobility, and harvest-floor assessments of targeted characteristics that affect quality and value of cattle, carcasses, and by-products. Transl. Anim. Sci. 1:229-238. doi:10.2527/tas2017.0029 [Translational Animal Science link]

Boykin, C. A., L. C. Eastwood, M. K. Harris, D. S. Hale, C. R. Kerth, D. B. Griffin, A. N. Arnold, J. D. Hasty, K. E. Belk, D. R. Woerner, R. J. Delmore, Jr., J. N. Martin, D. L. VanOverbeke, G. G. Mafi, M. M. Pfeiffer, T. E. Lawrence, T. J. McEvers, T. B. Schmidt, R. J. Maddock, D. D. Johnson, C. C. Carr, J. M. Scheffler, T. D. Pringle, A. M. Stelzleni, J. Gottlieb, and J. W. Savell. 2017. National Beef Quality Audit-2016: Survey of carcass characteristics through instrument grading assessments. J. Anim. Sci. 95:3003-3011. doi:10.2527/jas2017.1544 [PubMed] [Journal of Animal Science link]

Boykin, C. A., L. C. Eastwood, M. K. Harris, D. S. Hale, C. R. Kerth, D. B. Griffin, A. N. Arnold, J. D. Hasty, K. E. Belk, D. R. Woerner, R. J. Delmore, Jr., J. N. Martin, D. L. VanOverbeke, G. G. Mafi, M. M. Pfeiffer, T. E. Lawrence, T. J. McEvers, T. B. Schmidt, R. J. Maddock, D. D. Johnson, C. C. Carr, J. M. Scheffler, T. D. Pringle, A. M. Stelzleni, J. Gottlieb, and J. W. Savell. 2017. National Beef Quality Audit-2016: In-plant survey of carcass characteristics related to quality, quantity, and value of fed steers and heifers. J. Anim. Sci. 95:2993-3002. doi:10.2527/jas2017.1543 [PubMed] [Journal of Animal Science link]

Hasty, J. D., M. M. Pfeiffer, L. C. Eastwood, D. A. Gredell, C. L. Gifford, J. R. Levey, C. M. Cashman, D. R. Woerner, J. N. Martin, R. J. Delmore, W. B. Griffin, D. L. VanOverbeke, G. G. Mafi, C. A. Boykin, D. S. Hale, C. R. Kerth, D. B. Griffin, A. N. Arnold, J. W. Savell, D. L. Pendell, and K. E. Belk. 2017. National Beef Quality Audit 2016: Phase I, face-to-face interviews. Transl. Anim. Sci. 1:320-332. doi:10.2527/tas2017.0039 [Translational Animal Science link]

Harris, M. K., L. C. Eastwood, C. A. Boykin, A. N. Arnold, K. B. Gehring, D. S. Hale, C. R. Kerth, D. B. Griffin, J. W. Savell, K. E. Belk, D. R. Woerner, J. D. Hasty, R. J. Delmore, Jr., J. N. Martin, T. E. Lawrence, T. J. McEvers, D. L. VanOverbeke, G. G. Mafi, M. M. Pfeiffer, T. B. Schmidt, R. J. Maddock, D. D. Johnson, C. C. Carr, J. M. Scheffler, T. D. Pringle, and A. M. Stelzleni. 2018. National Beef Quality Audit – 2016:  assessment of cattle hide characteristics, offal condemnations, and carcass traits to determine the quality status of the market cow and bull beef industry. Transl. Anim. Sci. 2:37-49. doi:10.1093/tas/txx002 [Translational Animal Science link]

Harris, M. K., L. C. Eastwood, C. A. Boykin, A. N. Arnold, K. B. Gehring, D. S. Hale, C. R. Kerth, D. B. Griffin, J. W. Savell, K. E. Belk, D. R. Woerner, J. D. Hasty, R. J. Delmore, Jr., J. N. Martin, T. E. Lawrence, T. J. McEvers, D. L. VanOverbeke, G. G. Mafi, M. M. Pfeiffer, T. B. Schmidt, R. J. Maddock, D. D. Johnson, C. C. Carr, J. M. Scheffler, T. D. Pringle, and A. M. Stelzleni. 2017. National Beef Quality Audit – 2016: Transportation, mobility, live cattle, and carcass assessments of targeted producer-related characteristics that affect value of market cows and bulls, their carcasses, and associated by-products. Transl. Anim. Sci. 1:570–584. doi:10.2527/tas2017.0063 [Translational Animal Science link]

 

 

 

Center of the Plate Training®, June 5-7, 2018

AgriLife Logo
Davey Griffin talking about anatomy at the Center of the Plate Training sponsored by the North American Meat Institute

Davey Griffin talking about anatomy at the Center of the Plate Training sponsored by the North American Meat Institute

The North American Meat Institute has announced that the Center of the Plate Training® will be held at the Rosenthal Meat Center, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas, June 5-7, 2018. Center of the Plate Training® is a three-day course designed to teach the fundamentals of meat specifications by giving a first-hand look at how carcasses are converted to cuts commonly used in retail and foodservice. It is a lively learning experience that includes a detailed cutting demonstration of all the major center of the plate protein items: beef, veal, lamb, and pork, as well as sections on poultry and processed meats. Participants will come away with an increased knowledge of center of the plate items and a personal copy of the Meat Buyer’s Guide®; for over 40 years, the authoritative Guide to meat and poultry identification.

The Texas A&M University instructors include Davey Griffin, Professor and Extension Meat Specialist, and Jeff Savell, University Distinguished Professor, Regents Professor, and E.M. “Manny” Rosenthal Chairholder. Both Griffin and Savell have extensive knowledge of anatomy, grading, and cutting procedures, which adds so much to the training and the participants’ experiences.

Davey Griffin discussing beef cuts to participants at the Center of the Plate Training sponsored by the North American Meat Institute

Davey Griffin discussing beef cuts to participants at the Center of the Plate Training sponsored by the North American Meat Institute

What you will learn from this course:

  • The IMPS numbering system, purchaser specified options, and a knowledge of the meat items as described by the Meat Buyers Guide.
  • How standards keep products consistent, wholesome, and fair throughout the market.
  • Common defects or inconsistencies in meat products that you should look for to prevent dissatisfied customers.
  • How value is determined for meat products and how it is affected by quality parameters.
  • The latest meat cuts, including previously undervalued muscles, and innovative menu ideas.
Jim Murray, National Pork Board, and Davey Griffin, Texas A&M University demonstrating pork carcass cutting at the Center of the Plate workshop

Jim Murray, National Pork Board, and Davey Griffin, Texas A&M University demonstrating pork carcass cutting

Davey Griffin talking about lamb grading Center Plate

Davey Griffin talking about lamb grading

The course is being co-hosted by the American Meat Science Association, the American Association of Meat Processors, Chicago Midwest Meat Association, Canadian Meat Council, Southwest Meat Association, and Southeastern Meat Association. COP is funded in part by the Beef Checkoff, and is co-sponsored by the Pork Checkoff, Lamb Checkoff and Merck Animal Health.

For registration details, please go to Center of the Plate Training®.

Hotel Details:
Aloft College Station
3081 University Drive East
College Station, TX 77840
1-855-811-0254

For more information, contact Ann Wells, awells@meatinstitute.org or (202) 587-4252.

Upcoming Beef 101 dates scheduled for 2018

Mark Frenzel teaching beef cutting in Beef 101
Mark Frenzel teaching beef cutting in Beef 101

Mark Frenzel teaching beef cutting in Beef 101

Beef 101, the three-day intensive hands-on program conducted at Texas A&M University and designed for anyone who has an interest in expanding their knowledge of the total beef industry, has three dates scheduled for the rest of 2018:

May 15-17, 2018

August 28-30, 2018

December 5-7, 2018

Cost: $675 per person

How to Register: Register online at https://agriliferegister.tamu.edu (key word – beef 101).

For help with registration, call AgriLife Conference Services at (979) 845-2604.

For more information on Beef 101, contact Davey Griffin, professor and extension meat specialist with the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University at (979) 845-3935, dgriff@tamu.edu.

Clay Eastwood discussing beef carcass grading at Beef 101

Clay Eastwood discussing beef carcass grading at Beef 101

Beef 101 was first conducted in 1989 and is now held four times during the year. The workshop begins with evaluation of beef cattle to learn about how cattle are raised, fed and handled. Participants also estimate cattle parameters that will later be measured on beef carcasses. Later, participants learn about the procedures for beef carcass grading and the various premium programs now being applied to many carcasses. The consistently most positive rated activity associated with Beef 101 is conducted on the second day of the workshop. Participants are given a unique opportunity to team up in small numbers with an instructor to cut an entire side of beef into component parts. Beef anatomy, beef cut identification and component part yields and values are discussed at length during and after the day-long laboratory activity.

Ray Riley explaining beef harvest Beef 101

Ray Riley explaining beef harvest Beef 101

To round out the beef continuum from beef cattle to beef cuts to the plate, a thorough discussion of beef palatability including sampling various cuts will demonstrate how various cuts, grades and technologies may affect the eating experience of beef consumers.

Dr. Rhonda Miller teaching Beef 101

Dr. Rhonda Miller teaching Beef 101

Anyone interested in expanding their knowledge of the total beef industry. Former participants include representatives from state beef councils, national and international beef and meat associations, major communication/advertising groups, food companies (food service, retail, distributors, packers), and governmental agencies.

A maximum of 40 participants per session are accepted in order for maximum hands-on participation and interaction with faculty, staff and graduate student instructors.

Pork 101™ will be held at Texas A&M University, May 22-24, 2018

Pork 101™ grading exercise
Pork 101™ grading exercise

Pork 101™ grading exercise

Texas A&M University will again host one of the PORK 101™ workshops on May 22-24, 2018. PORK 101™ is a three-day, hands-on experience designed to update participants on quality and consistency issues in the pork industry. The program is hosted by the American Meat Science Association (AMSA) in cooperation with the National Pork Board and sponsored by Merck Animal Health.

PORK 101™ is co-sponsored by the American Association of Meat Processors (AAMP), American Society of Animal Science (ASAS), North American Meat Institute Foundation (NAMIF) and the Southwest Meat Association (SMA).

Jeff Savell instructing pork cutting

Jeff Savell instructing pork cutting

Pork 101™ Program Description

Pork 101™ includes insight on value differences in swine, pork carcasses, pork primals and processed pork products due to quality variation. Participants will have the chance to evaluate eight live hogs, which will be processed during the class with participants learning about grading, food safety and product processing. The class will make and sample processed product from the hogs including pumped loins, bacon, hams and sausage.

Date & Location

Tuesday, May 22 – Thursday, May 24, 2018
Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas

Daily Schedule
Tuesday: 7:30 am -6:00pm
Wednesday: 7:30am – 8:00pm
Thursday: 7:30am – noon

Registration

Registration for AMSA, AAMP, NAMI, SEMA, and SMA members is $825. Non-member registration is $975. AMSA student registration is $325. For AAMP, NAMI, SEMA, and SMA members please complete the registration form and fax the completed form to 1-888-205-5834 to receive the member discount.

Please contact Jen Persons jpersons@meatscience.org for questions or more information on additional courses.

Click here to register.

Click here to download the PDF registration brochure!

Meat Science presentation at Aggie Mom Camp

Davey Griffin addressing the Aggie Mom Camp participants
Davey Griffin addressing the Aggie Mom Camp participants

Davey Griffin addressing the Aggie Mom Camp participants

Meat Science faculty, Davey Griffin, Ray Riley, and Jeff Savell, and undergraduate students, Libby Schneider and Jazmin Guerra, gave a presentation and demonstration about the Meat Science program to the Aggie Mom Camp on Saturday, February 3, 2018 at the AgriLife Center at Texas A&M University. Topics covered included the history of meat science, the teaching activities including the meat judging program, ANSC 307, Meats, and ANSC 117, Texas Barbecue, research activities including graduate student training, the Extension activities including programs such as Beef 101, Pork 101, Camp Brisket, Barbecue Summer Camp, and the Rosenthal Meat Center, especially highlighting the retail sales area, the nationally renowned Texas Aggie Beef Jerky, and the Texas Aggie Prime Rib. In addition to the update on the Meat Science program, the participants had two other presentations, which focused on the horticulture and coffee research programs.

Here is an excerpt about Aggie Mom Camp:

Every year since 1994, the Federation of TAMU Mothers’ Clubs has held Aggie Mom Camp in Aggieland. The goal of the event is similar to that of the camps for our Aggies. The Federation hopes to have experienced Aggie Moms help new Aggie Moms with the transition as their child leaves home to attend Texas A&M University and to introduce them to the wonderful traditions of A&M. Aggie Mom Camp is also a great weekend for the experienced Aggie Mom.

Aggie Mom Club welcome

Aggie Mom Club welcome

Dr. Mark Hussey, Vice Chancellor and Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, welcoming Aggie Mom Camp to AgriLife Center

Dr. Mark Hussey, Vice Chancellor and Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, welcoming Aggie Mom Camp to AgriLife Center

The 200 Aggie Moms were welcomed to the AgriLife Center by Dr. Mark Hussey, Vice Chancellor and Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. The Aggie Moms were divided into three groups for the rotations to learn about the programs.

Jeff Savell talking about the Meat Science program at Texas A&M University

Jeff Savell talking about the Meat Science program at Texas A&M University

Aggie Mom Camp participants

Aggie Mom Camp participants

Davey Griffin talking about the major high priced cuts of beef

Davey Griffin talking about the major high priced cuts of beef

Ray Riley answering questions

Ray Riley answering questions

Davey Griffin fielding questions with Ray Riley, Libby Schneider, and Jazmin Guerra

Davey Griffin fielding questions with Ray Riley, Libby Schneider, and Jazmin Guerra

In addition to a slide presentation about the Meat Science program, Davey Griffin led the discussion about the major cuts of beef and where they came from. But the real star of the show was the Texas Aggie Prime Rib. Prime rib was prepared at the Rosenthal Meat Center and brought to the AgriLife Center for the Aggie Mom’s to sample. Without question, the prime rib was a hit.

Aggie Mom Camp participants lining up for prime rib

Aggie Mom Camp participants lining up for prime rib

Jazmin Guerra and Libby Schneider serving prime rib to the Aggie Mom Camp participants

Jazmin Guerra and Libby Schneider serving prime rib to the Aggie Mom Camp participants

Grad students provide leadership to Beef 101 program

Chandler Steele

Beef 101 began in 1989, and from the start, graduate students have played an important role in the success of this program. This is especially evident on day 2 where the participants are assigned to cutting groups, and the grad students lead these groups describing where the cuts are to be made, answering questions about where certain cuts come from, and guidance is given to help preserve the value of the cuts while ensuring the safety of everyone involved when knives and saws are being used. Hundreds of graduate students have worked with Beef 101 over all of these years, and their leadership  is so appreciated by the participants and the Texas A&M University faculty and staff.

These are photos of the graduate students who were leading the cutting groups from the Beef 101 program in January, 2018. Here they are working with their groups talking about beef carcass grading and discussing the factors involved in quality and yield grading. Thanks to the current students for being so good at what they do.

Clay Eastwood at Beef 101

Clay Eastwood

Chandler Steele

Chandler Steele

Baylee Bessire

Baylee Bessire

Jill Jobe

Jill Jobe

Spencer Tindel talking about beef yield grading at Beef 101

Spencer Tindel talking about beef yield grading

Becca Kirkpatrick and Baylee Bessire

Becca Kirkpatrick and Baylee Bessire

Katy Jo Nickelson determining the size of a beef ribeye

Katy Jo Nickelson determining the size of a beef ribeye

Brogan Horton

Brogan Horton

Clay Eastwood discussing beef carcass grading

Clay Eastwood discussing beef carcass grading

Becca Kirkpatrick

Becca Kirkpatrick