2016 American Akaushi Association Convention
Fifth Annual American Akaushi Association Convention
Held in Lubbock, Texas
The 2016 American Akaushi Association Convention and Trade Show was recently held October 28-30 at the Overton Hotel and Conference Center in Lubbock, Texas. This year’s theme of “Akaushi Savvy” provided a special atmosphere for the more than 200 in attendance. Through unique information about the breed plus some “boots on the ground” tours, the popularity and profitability achieved in the industry from Certified Akaushi Beef was front and center.
Bubba Bain, Executive Director of the American Akaushi Association said, “ On Friday October 28, we carried two packed buses of breeders, educators, industry leaders, and others with all levels of interest and knowledge about Akaushi to Bovina Feeders near Farwell, Texas and Caviness Beef Packers in Hereford, Texas . They learned first hand Akaushi feedlot efficiency from Cee Arnett of Bovina Feeders and at Caviness Beef Packers, all could easily see the positive carcass results for Akaushi as described by Trevor Caviness. Akaushi substantially improves carcass quality in both grade and yield with every breed.”
Attendees on Saturday October 29th were entertained and informed by a highly diverse set of speakers during the all day convention session.
• Republican Texas State Senator, Charles Perry, gave a hearty welcome from his District 28 which covers Lubbock, San Angelo and 46 mostly rural counties.
• Colin Woodall - Government Affairs, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association discussed in-depth looks into the upcoming election and predictions for how a new president and congress will work with NCBA for cattlemen policies now and in the future.
• Jaclyn Wilson - Flying Diamond Genetics, Nebraska stepped in with a strong effort to help many in attendance understand the millennial view and their take on ranching.
•Dr. Stephen Smith - Texas A&M University presented his study, “Impact of Akaushi ground beef on risk factors in men and women”, sharing the positive results.
• AgriClear, an online marketing partner with American Akaushi Association, presented an exciting view of how their online marketplace and system can work for anyone. Dr. Nevil Speer, vice-president of U.S. operations and Carrie Lewis-Huenink, manager of business development, both with AgriClear, led the step by step presentation and answered several follow-up questions.
• Jill Ginn with Neogen/GeneSeek stressed the importance for breed associations to transition from STR’s to SNP’s. She explained that SNP’s will provide more beneficial prediction of seedstock traits. Ginn said “the new test will allow American Akaushi Association members a better path to expand the genotyping of seedstock replacements.”
• Dr. John Paterson - Neogen/GeneSeek, noted how consumer wants impact and direct ranch sustainability for today and tomorrow.
• Dr. John Michael Riley - Oklahoma State University, had plenty of attention in his discussion of “Breeding Profits in Tough Market Environments”.
Bill Fielding, CEO of HeartBrand Beef moderated the always popular panel discussion rounding out the full day of information. Joining Fielding this year was Dr. Ty Lawrence - West Texas A&M University; Dr. Brad Johnson - Texas Tech University and Akaushi Association member Phil Davis - Bar O Ranch, Idaho. Their dedication to the industry and Akaushi raised excitement with their discussion of “Maximizing Value with Integrity”.
The annual evening banquet began with American Akaushi Association Junior member, Cuatro Brown of Beeville, Texas provided the evening crowd a close up review of The Texas Youth Cattle Conference held this past June. Brown explained how youth from all over Texas came together to learn and see more of the Texas Beef industry. All who attended will continue to impact the beef industry through individual projects focusing on their specific passions within the industry.
Ross Wilson, President and CEO of Texas Cattle Feeders Association, then expressed his highly informative and inspirational keynote message to the 2016 Convention,
Also during the evening banquet, the 2016 “Securing the Legacy” award was presented to the individual, family or ranch, that has provided key leadership and marketing efforts for the American Akaushi. Receiving this prestigious award was the Bar O Ranch, owned by Phil Davis and family near Cascade, Idaho. Their involvement with Akaushi began in 2010 and not only are they very active breeders, but key players in the expansion of the breed throughout the northwest.
The first “Prime Plus” award was presented in 2015. This award highlights an individual or company that is supportive of the Akaushi breed, American Akaushi Association and its programs, promotes Beef in a positive manner, and actively markets Beef as HeartBrand or Certified Akaushi Beef. Earlier in the day, Jordan Beeman, president of HeartBrand Beef presented the 2016 Prime Plus award to JK Ha and his company SPI. Ha is a real veteran in the beef business and very active in the marketing and growth of Akaushi beef sales both in Southern California and Korea.
“We came to Lubbock anxious to share more of the Akaushi story and The American Akaushi Association vision in the Beef industry. This year we know our convention participants gained more knowledge and inspiration to utilize in today and tomorrow’s Beef industry, "Bain said.
Other convention activities held in 2016 included a well attended Trade Show, Taste of Akaushi Dining, Fun Auction and Country Church with Pastor Jerry and Cindy Stewart of Lone Star Cowboy Church.
The American Akaushi is proven for producing higher grading quality carcasses with increased profit potential in the Beef business. Since 2009, The American Akaushi Association has had positive growth every year in membership and registration numbers because of the profitability advantage and we look especially forward to a great 2017. ” Bain said.