Last week the artisanal butchery task force submitted its recommendations to the legislature in efforts to address workforce challenges in meat lockers in Iowa. The task force was created during the 2021 legislative session and was charged with exploring the feasibility of establishing an artisanal butchery program in a community college or regent institution.

The task force recommends that there be a one-year artisanal butchery certificate program offered to the state's community college systems and encourages those community colleges to take advantage of programs and services that are offered by Iowa State University meat lab.

The task force also recommends other measures be taken to help with workforce and regulatory challenges including;

  • Establishing a toolkit for meat processing businesses to find resources and training;
  • Create a talent pipeline by generating interest at a high school level;
  • Exploring opportunities to reduce regulatory hurdles;
  • Help add value to products
Photo by MK Digital Products on Unsplash
Photo by MK Digital Products on Unsplash

IA Department of Ag Expands Online Pesticide Testing

The Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig announced that the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship Pesticide Bureau has expanded online testing to all commercial and private pesticide applicator category exams. Pesticide applicators are also encouraged to apply for certification now to avoid delays in the spring.

All commercial pesticide exams are available online. These exams are monitored, reported, and reviewed by third-party proctoring service tests are also administered in person.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship has partnered with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach to host these sessions. Dubuque and Blackhawk counties are among the locations with in-person tests.


10 Myths About Iowa That Even Some Natives Believe

Iowa is an ag state with more heads of hog than human, but there's a lot more to us than crops and critters. How many people actually know that, however?

Our Freedom Story mural - downtown Waterloo

Take a walk along the Cedar River in downtown Waterloo to view this 3,000-square-foot mural of the city's civil rights history shown abstractly through lines, shapes, and colors. Located behind the Waterloo Center for the Arts (near the Highway 63 bridge). Created by the Waterloo Youth Art Team.


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