News from the National Pork Board

PQA Handbook updated to meet industry's changing needs

The PORK QUALITY ASSURANCE(TM) (PQA) Program fills an important role in the United States' pork industry. Introduced in 1989 as a three-level educational program for producers, the PQA program has become a standard of excellence in the industry. Recently, the handbook for this program was revised to more accurately reflect the needs of today's pork industry.

A copy of the revised handbook was sent in December to every AASV member within the United States. For more information on the PQA program and its revisions, contact Dr Paul Sundberg, Assistant Vice President of Veterinary Issues, at the National Pork Board at 515-223-2600, or, or visit the National Pork Board's web site at

TQA Program works to ensure quality and safety in transportation

To ensure quality and safety throughout the pork production chain, attention and care must be given to all steps in the process. The National Pork Board's Trucker Quality Assurance (TQA) Program will address transportation issues and will train transporters to properly move and handle hogs.

The TQA Program will provide information about how to haul pigs in a way that reduces stress on hogs, how to safely haul hogs during extreme weather conditions, what guidelines to follow for space requirements during transport, and how to effectively handle downers and slows. Attending the program and passing a multiple choice written test will earn truckers National Pork Board TQA certification.

The National Pork Board has prepared participant and facilitator guides to be used in educational seminars. Training workshops were given in December to prepare representatives from the nation's packing plants to conduct TQA seminars. For more information on the TQA Program, contact Dr David Meisinger, Assistant Vice President of Pork Quality at the National Pork Board, at 515-223-2600 or

"Check stuffer" educates producers on avoiding drug residues

The National Pork Board recently published a flyer for packers, veterinarians, and other allied industry to place in mailings to their producer customers. This "check stuffer" focuses on the increased consequences of drug residues. It highlights new consequences the USDA is imposing on repeat residue-violators, emphasizes the importance of a veterinarian-client-patient relationship, and gives steps for producers to follow to avoid the consequences of drug residues.

If you are interested in using these "check stuffers" in your practice, please contact the National Pork Board at 515-223-2600.