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Extension Education

Chris Bruynis
Associate Professor, Extension Educator & Area Leader
Ohio State University Extension


The meat processing disruption due to COVID, coupled with the desire to further educate youth exhibiting market livestock, created the perfect opportunity to provide a hands-on training for youth in Ross County.  Program delivery brought together the Ohio State University Extension Meat Specialist, OSU Meat Science graduate students, local Extension Educators, local farmers, and older market livestock exhibitors. Having the diversity of experiences and perspectives created a wide-ranging dialogue about food safety, animal harvesting, meat processing, and career opportunities for our youth.  The program consisted of three sessions, with the first being a detailed Zoom training on food safety and animal harvest. Session two was the actual harvesting and preparing the animal carcass to be chilled.  The third session was the processing of the meat cuts, packaging, and concluded with a sausage taste testing. Impact was measured with a post-event survey of participants and their parents. Students reported their knowledge was somewhat to definitely-enhanced on the following topics:  food safety, 100%; swine harvesting process, 91%; ground pork eating characteristics, 100%; industry jobs, 100%; and education options for related careers, 100%. All the parents completing the survey believed their child's knowledge was somewhat to definitely-enhanced in all the measured areas.  Youth provided many additional comments such as

  • “It was exciting get to have a professor on site teaching me and I had the option to ask her question if I had any. I also enjoyed learning about career opportunities in the Agricultural field because I never knew there were so many options.” and
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  • “My favorite part was the casual atmosphere.  I had the opportunity to ask Lyda Garcia and her team specific questions about processing and the relationship between environmental conditions, handling, and nutritional practices to the overall quality of the meat.”
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Even though there is some resistance in sub-populations to the harvesting and processing of animals, feedback from our community was very positive. Requests for adult classes were received as well as kudos from many of our volunteers and community leaders. 

Poster has NOT been presented at any previous NACAA AM/PIC

This poster is being submitted for judging. It will be displayed at the AM/PIC if not selected as a State winner. The abstract will be published in the proceedings.

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Authors: C. L. Bruynis, K Wells, L Garcia
  1. Bruynis, C. Associate Professor, Extension Educator & County Extension Director, Ohio State University Extension, Ohio, 45601
  2. Wells, K. Extension Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Ohio, 45601
  3. Garcia, L. Extension Meat Specialist, Ohio State University, Ohio, 43210