One of the many member perks with being an current member with the Nebraska Sheep and Goat Producers Association, is being able to apply for Short Courses. Ivan Rush is a currently serving on the NS&GP Board of Directors for the Western Region. He applied and was selected to attend the Lamb 300 course on November 3-5, 2016 in Laramie, Wyoming. Here’s what Ivan had to say about the course.
Lamb 300, Very Successful and Educational
Ivan G. Rush
American Lamb is a very delicious source of protein and yet consumption of lamb remains very low. Often times even producers of sheep do not consume lamb on a regular basis and in some cases have never tried lamb. To give producers and consumers a better understanding of lamb products the University of Wyoming, Washington State University and Superior Farms teamed up and with partial funding from ASI, Let’s Grow program carried out an excellent 2 ½ day program called Lamb 300. The program involved education and hands-on activities and demonstrations dealing with all aspects of producing high quality American Lamb products, starting with evaluating live sheep to processing the lambs, to enjoying many of the delicious products. To assist in the live evaluations, ultrasound was demonstrated to enhance live lamb evaluation.
The harvesting of the lamb was observed in tours of two Colorado plants, Superior Farms, Denver and Mountain States Lamb in Greeley, Colorado plus close up observation in the University of Wyoming Meat Lab. The carcasses of previously observed live lambs were evaluated, but then the participants actually processed the lamb into retail cuts which included a session on sausage making. Other topics included sheep and lamb economics, the global future of the sheep industry, nutrition of feeding lambs, wool production and grading and various cooking methods presented by a super chef from Sysco Foods, Denver, electronic grading of carcasses and taste panel evaluations. The workshop allowed time for producer interaction and to share about their own operation.
I would like to thank the NSGP for sponsoring me to this program and to ASI, Let’s Grow program for devoting funds to this very worthwhile educational program. I would be happy to visit with anyone that is interested in additional information on Lamb 300. I would encourage all producers to attend a similar program in the future.