Genetics workshop helps farmers improve beef production

BRYANTOWN, Md. - The Southern Maryland Meats program of the Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission (SMADC) is partnering with the University of Maryland Extension (UME) to offer a series of workshops on beef genetics, estrus synchronization and artificial insemination (AI). Both workshops will be held at Zekiah Farms, 5235 Bryantown Road, Waldorf, Maryland on Saturday, March 24 and Saturday, April 7, beginning at 10 a.m.

These workshops are developed specifically for regional beef producers in order to enhance the livestock genetic base in Southern Maryland, increase potential for productivity and improve the quality of meat products sold in the region. Topics include essential genetic and reproductive education for increased pregnancy success rates and quality meat production, as well as hands-on body condition scoring and chute-side protocols demonstrations.

As an added value to the workshops, farmers will have the opportunity to join a mutually coordinated synchronized ‘group’ breeding season, led by UME Livestock specialist Jeff Semler, and benefit from a professionally administered AI service from a leading genetic company. Producers will be reimbursed for semen/genetics, arm service and hormone costs (CIDR, prostaglandins, and/or gonadotropin), squeeze chute rental (as needed) up to $500 per producer. A full refund of the workshop registration fees applies to farmers enrolling in and completing the full breeding series.

It is imperative for any producer who wants to enroll in the elective group breeding series to immediately separate their breeding stock from their bulls in anticipation of hormonal synchronization for May/early June breeding in order to maximize successful outcomes. While SMM cannot guarantee success rates, every effort will be made to achieve the highest levels of impregnation. Producers who register for the series will be required to complete a brief survey in order to assess their goals so that these workshops can be tailored to individual needs.

Genetics and AI Workshops are available to all Southern Maryland Beef producers. Registration fees of $60 per person, per workshop, or $100 for the series, include a catered lunch (limit two representatives per producer). Registration must be received by March 19, 2018. To register, visit the "News and Announcements" page "Current News" on the SMADC website at to find the Registration Form.

For questions about the Genetics and AI Workshops contact Craig Sewell, SMM Marketing and Livestock Specialist at (301) 274-1922, extension 1, or by email at These workshops are made possible in part by a Rural Maryland Prosperity Investment Fund Grant (RMPIF) award to SMADC, a division of the Tri-County Council for Southern Maryland.

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