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FARM Animal Care Kicks Off Version 4.0 Revision Process

July 5, 2018

The National Dairy Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) Animal Care Technical Writing Group met in June to kick off the FARM Animal Care Version 4.0 revision process.

During the first in-person meeting of the technical writing group, members reviewed the program evaluation form and started discussions on which standards or guidelines need to be updated. Accountability measures and program implementation standardization were also a focus.

There was also discussion about the FARM Program’s new Farmer Advisory Council, which will comprise dairy farmers who will share guidance and input toward the program’s ongoing and future development. Nominations to be on the council have been received and the selection committee will be convening soon to select members.

The FARM Program, the U.S. dairy industry’s animal care quality assurance program, was established in 2009 and operates on a three-year revision cycle. Each cycle, the Technical Writing Group reviews current program standards, new and relevant science, and comments provided by industry stakeholders to incorporate into the new version of the program. The group will provide recommended updates for Version 4.0 to NMPF’s Animal Health & Well-being Committee this fall.

Once approved by the committee, final approval for the updated version will be made by NMPF’s Board of Directors, with ultimate implementation slated for Jan. 1, 2020. FARM Animal Care evaluators will undergo training during the summer and fall of 2019.