Conference Targets New Feedlot Regulations, Technologies

URBANA - Livestock producers face new Concentrated Animal Feedlot Operations (CAFO) regulations, passed in 2002.
calendar icon 22 January 2003
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But the good news is that there is plenty of research data, management information and financial assistance facts, which will be showcased at the Livestock Manure Management Conference this coming March in Bloomington.

This conference, sponsored by the University of Illinois Department of Agricultural Engineering, will help producers grapple with the new regulations, as well as address an array of concerns faced by livestock producers in the state of Illinois.

"We're bringing in a number of specialists, as well as experts from out of state," said Ted Funk, coordinator of the LMM Conference. "So I think there will be a high level of interest.

"For example, we have two very high-powered speakers to address the issue of good neighbor practices," Funk said. "Eldon McAfee is an attorney for the Iowa Pork Producers, representing livestock farmers in nuisance litigation. He should have a pretty interesting take on what producers can do to keep themselves out of trouble."

In addition, Ellen Hankes, a former swine producer from Illinois, will discuss the On-Farm Assessment and Environmental Review project - a free, on-site inspection of livestock production facilities. Hankes now works with America's Clean Water Foundation and Environmental Management Systems.

"McAfee and Hankes will give short presentations," said Funk, "then we're going to ask them key questions so they can address two sides of a variety of issues. It should be a very interesting exchange."

Other highlights include the following:

  • Bruce Yurdin, Watershed Manager, Bureau of Water, Illinois EPA, will discuss the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System and the new CAFO regulations.
  • To show how public funding can help producers, two resource conservationists will discuss livestock-related water quality projects in Illinois, and U of I professor Mike Ellis will give an overview of research being conducted under C-FAR.
  • Paula Hingson, Farm Bill coordinator at the state Natural Resources Conservation Service office, will explain the Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP) to conference participants. EQIP can provide significant financial assistance to producers who are willing to plan and work with agencies on conservation and manure management practices.
A new feature at the conference this year is the "Round-the-Room" session. Each speaker will have an exhibit table to showcase information, so when attendees break for lunch, they will have a chance to talk one-on-one with these speakers. Attendees will also be able to visit the tables of conference exhibitors and different state agencies.

In the afternoon, breakout sessions will give special attention to beef/dairy and swine producers.

"The feedlot runoff problems that beef and dairy producers face are often quite different than the problems of swine producers," said Funk. "So we have two sessions running concurrently, one focused on beef/dairy issues, the other on swine."

For instance, Ken Griswold, a professor at Southern Illinois University, will discuss feedlot runoff control systems for the beef/dairy producers.

"Ken has years of experience with vegetative filter strips," said Funk. "This will give our beef/dairy producers an opportunity to hear about some things that work, and a chance to discuss them."

Meanwhile, Phil Westerman, professor at North Carolina State University, will speak to swine producers about manure treatment.

"The ag engineering department at North Carolina State is working with a number of alternative manure treatment technologies," said Funk. "Phil will be able to answer producers' questions on what to expect in the near future as possibilities for manure treatment."

Gary Apgar, another professor from SIU, will speak to swine producers about feed management for controlling excretion of nitrogen and phosphorus.

Funk believes this year's conference is an excellent value.

"We're targeting some of the issues of swine producers," he said. "But we also have something special for the beef and dairy producers on the feedlot management issues. I think it's going to be a great conference."

The Livestock Manure Management Conference will be held at the Radisson Hotel and Convention Center in Bloomington, Illinois on March 11, 2003, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Participants are asked to pre-register by March 4th.

The cost for the conference is $35. To register, call the U of I College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences marketing and distribution office at 1-800-345-6087. For more information, you may email Funk at .

Source: ACES News - 22nd January 2003

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