BQA Awards

The National BQA Award recognizes outstanding beef and dairy producers, marketers, and educators that best demonstrate animal care and handling principles as part of the day-to-day activities on their respective operations.  A common trait among all contest entrants must be a strong desire to continually improve BQA on their operations while encouraging others to implement the producer education program.

National BQA award winners are selected by a committee of representatives from universities, state beef councils and affiliated groups.  Nominations can be submitted by any organization, group, or individual on behalf of a U.S. beef producer.  Individuals and families may not nominate themselves, however, the nominees are expected to be involved in the preparation of the application. 

Four National BQA Awards (Beef Cow-Calf and Feedyard, Dairy, and Marketer) are funded in part by The Beef Checkoff program with additional financial support provided by Cargill Meat Solutions.  The program promotes beef quality assurance in all segments of the industry, including commercial cow-calf, seedstock, stocker operators, feedlots and dairy operations.

The BQA Educator Award is sponsored in part by The Beef Checkoff program with additional financial support provided by Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica. 

2019 Cow Calf Award Matador Cattle Co., Kansas, Texas, & Montana

Matador Cattle Company is the recipient of the 2019 BQA Cow-Calf Award. Founded in 1952, the Matador Cattle Company raises more than 12,000 head of cattle on three ranches that are located in Kansas, Texas and Montana. On each ranch, employees are BQA certified and understand proper animal handling. Matador Cattle Company works closely with veterinarians to keep detailed records and is one of the first cow-calf operations to bring in a third party BQA evaluator to determine areas for continuous improvement.

2019 Feedyard Award Buffalo Feeders, Oklahoma

The winner of the 2019 Feedyard BQA Award is Buffalo Feeders, located in Buffalo, Okla. Part of the Pratt Feeders Group, Buffalo Feeders is a 30,000 head custom feedyard that focuses on individual animal care. The feedyard incorporates comprehensive animal identification and a complete record keeping system to track the health and progress of each animal from their arrival to the yard to when they are loaded out. Every employee is trained and certified in the care and handling principles of the BQA program.

2019 Dairy Award Scattered Acres, Inc., Pennsylvania

Scattered Acres Inc., located in Bedford, Pa., is the winner of the 2019 BQA – FARM Dairy Award. Each day, the Hartman family focuses on the care of their 1,100 cows at their two locations. Knowing that their dairy cows will eventually become part of the beef supply, employees are trained to follow BQA guidelines to ensure high quality milk as well as beef. With use of technology, intensive record keeping and employee training on BQA principles, Scattered Acres is committed to delivering safe, wholesome dairy and beef products.

2019 Marketer Award Equity Livestock Sales Cooperative Association, Wisconsin

The Equity Cooperative Livestock Sales Association (Equity Coop) is the winner of the 2019 BQA Marketer Award and has served the needs of Wisconsin producers since 1922. As the state’s largest livestock marketer, Equity Cooperative Livestock has 14 locations, more than 300 employees and a focus on BQA best practices. With every employee trained and following BQA principles, the team at Equity is building consumer confidence in Wisconsin’s beef industry.

2019 Educator Award Dr. Temple Grandin, Colorado

Dr. Temple Grandin is the winner of the 2019 Educator of the year BQA Award. For more than four decades, Dr. Grandin has been leading the effort for better treatment of livestock. Throughout her career, she has conducted valuable research into the welfare and handling of cattle. She has worked with ranchers, feedlots and packers to identify and prevent challenges in animal care. She has also taught college courses for several decades, shaping the future minds of the cattle industry. Dr. Grandin’s research topics helped shape the BQA program from the beginning and are key components of today’s BQA training initiatives.