Texas FFA News  
Veribest FFA Member Directly Contributes to Food Supply Through Diversified Livestock Production    
Thursday, August 24, 2023 | Author: Texas FFA News

Veribest FFA member, Connor Pence, produces multiple livestock species, including swine, goats, sheep, and cattle, to equip his diversified livestock business.

Pence contributes to yielding and procuring high-quality livestock for the agriculture industry. 

"The goal of my projects has increasingly been producing high-quality livestock," said Pence. "The genetics of my herds must continue to improve."

In addition, exceptional nutrition is vital for all species; the nutrient most in need is water. He ensures that all animals have a constant supply of clean drinking water as he analyzes the additional nutritional needs. 

"For example, with the breeding goat project, I have to adjust the rations that I feed them based on their reproductive cycle," said Pence. "I have to take into account whether they are lactating or gestating and adjust their ration accordingly. My market animals are also checked for an average weekly gain, leading to my ability to raise my market lambs' average daily gain from 0.3 to 0.7 pounds per day."

The FFA member also understands that his actions taken with his livestock can affect the consumer industry. 

"Due to the fact that the animals that I am raising are, for the most part, intended to go into the food supply, I ensure that all of my animals are safe for consumption at the time of slaughter," said Pence. "I keep a record of all medications given to my animals as well as keep track of withdrawal dates so that I can ensure that there are no residues in the meat when the animal is slaughtered."

Pence's successful SAE project was recognized as a National Proficiency winner in Diversified Livestock Production at the 2022 National FFA Convention.

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