October 15, 2003
Oct. 2003 -- The National Sheep Industry Improvement Center (NSIIC) board of directors met with national officers of several U.S. sheep and goat organizations on Aug. 9, 2003, in Chicago, Ill., to review NSIIC loan and grant programs.
The meeting also gave the Sheep Center an opportunity to inform participants about the benefits offered by these programs.
American Sheep Industry Association (ASI) officers, Guy Flora, president, and Burdell Johnson, secretary/treasurer, represented sheep producers, and provided positive feedback regarding the importance of NSIIC?s efforts in financing sheep-related projects.
The center also assisted with ongoing discussions between ASI and goat industry leaders. Both groups are working to identify common actions and projects that could be jointly funded, benefiting producers of both species.
The sheep and goat meeting held on Friday, Aug. 8, was the most widely attended meeting yet between leadership of the two groups, with a full day of earnest discussions centered on the common interests and needs of sheep and goats.
ASI has assisted goat producers with inclusion in federally funded programs such as the Livestock Compensation Payment programs of 2002 and 2003, as well as the Marketing Loan Deficiency Payment program for mohair in the 2002 Farm Bill. Leading officials of the goat organizations, from meat and dairy goats to breed registries, began discussions of national coordination within their industry as well as the possibility of aligning with ASI.
?We commend the Sheep Center for organizing this important meeting, which was likely the first sheep and goat meeting of this stature conducted in the United States,? stated Flora.