Helena, Mont. – The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) has been awarded $52,158 from USDA’s Quality Samples Program (QSP) to further develop the market for U.S. beef genetics in Nicaragua. Through January 2020, MDA will use the funds to send semen and embryos from Montana ranches to Nicaragua.
“This is great news for Montana seedstock producers,” said MDA Director Ben Thomas. “Our beef genetics are known worldwide for their high quality, and with Nicaragua being the largest cattle producing country in Central America, we feel this will become an important and fruitful relationship for Montana.”
The award comes on the heels of a series of successful MDA trade missions with Nicaragua. In March 2017, MDA staff accompanied Montana ranchers on an outbound trade mission to Nicaragua. The trip included visits with feedlot owners, slaughterhouse operators, and ranchers, who discussed the need for higher quality meat and faster processing times. Then, in October 2017, MDA hosted Nicaraguan cattlemen for visits to several Montana ranches and a stop at the NILE livestock show, where they viewed the high quality genetics first-hand.
Montana is recognized on a national and international level for exceptional genetics, and has been referred to as the “seedstock capitol of the world”, due in large part to the hard work and foresight of the state’s producers in perfecting their herds.
The QSP enables potential customers around the world to discover the quality and benefits of U.S. agricultural products. For more information on the program, visit: https://www.fas.usda.gov/programs/quality-samples-program-qsp
The Montana Department of Agriculture’s mission is to protect producers and consumers, and to enhance and develop agriculture and allied industries.