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Pennsylvania 4-H Poultry Delegation Excels at National Contest

Posted: November 30, 2012

The 4-H poultry judging team swept the National Poultry Judging contest held in Louisville, KY Nov. 14-15; others placed in top five.
Front, l-r: Phillip J. Clauer, Madeline Martin, Kaitlin Rogers, Francine Joyce-Martin, Haley Giedroc, Hannah Park, Helga Tate, Sandy Haagen. Back, l-r: Greg Martin, Phillip R. Clauer, Alayni Caprio, Alissa Woomer, Cheryl Chuba, Laura Chuba, Jacob Haagen.

Front, l-r: Phillip J. Clauer, Madeline Martin, Kaitlin Rogers, Francine Joyce-Martin, Haley Giedroc, Hannah Park, Helga Tate, Sandy Haagen. Back, l-r: Greg Martin, Phillip R. Clauer, Alayni Caprio, Alissa Woomer, Cheryl Chuba, Laura Chuba, Jacob Haagen.

The Pennsylvania 4-H poultry judging team swept the National Poultry Judging contest held as part of the 2012 National 4-H Poultry and Egg Conference, Nov. 14-15 at the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center in Louisville. They were named overall team champions after placing first in the production hens division, the market poultry division, the market egg division out of 21 teams. Individual members placed first, second, third and ninth individually out of 86 contestants.

Members of the overall champion team from Pennsylvania were Kaitlin Rogers, Howard; Alissa Woomer, Howard; Phillip R. Clauer, State College; and Alayni Caprio, Howard. Each team member received a trophy and a gold pin, and the team received the Dr. Charles Wabeck Memorial Award. Kaitlin Rogers was overall individual champion in the Poultry Judging contest with 1430 out of a possible 1500 points, and received a plaque, a gold pin and a $250 cash price. Coach was Jacob Haagen, Howard. 

Rogers was first in the market egg division, third in production hens and reasons and fourth in market poultry. Woomer was second overall, fourth in market eggs and fifth in market poultry. Clauer was third overall, second in production hens and reasons, eighth in market eggs and tenth in market poultry. Caprio was ninth overall and third in market eggs.

In the judging contest, participants are required to grade ready-to-cook chicken and turkey carcasses, place live production hens and give oral reasons explaining their placing, and grade market eggs.

Other top ranking teams were Florida (2nd), Ohio (3rd), Missouri (4th), Georgia (5th), Arkansas (6th), Maryland (7th), Indiana (8th), Virginia (9th), and Louisiana (10th).

Cheryl Chuba, Dauphin, took first place in the turkey barbecue and presentation contest, receiving a plaque, gold pin, $250 and the Robert Hogue Memorial Award. Coach was Laura Chuba. Madeline Martin, West Grove, was fifth in the chicken barbecue and presentation contest. Coach was Francine Joyce-Martin, West Grove. In the chicken and turkey barbecuing contests participants barbecued three chicken halves or two turkey fillets and gave an oral presentation on the corresponding poultry industry.

Pennsylvania placed fifth in the Avian Bowl contest with members Haley Giedroc, Howard; Hannah Park, Snow Shoe; and Helga Tate, Port Matilda, coached by Sandy Haagen, Howard. This contest is a round robin tournament in which the contestants are required to answer questions regarding poultry science, poultry meat and egg production, and information about the poultry industries.

Also accompanying the group were Phillip J. Clauer, Penn State poultry specialist and Gregory Martin, Capital Region extension educator. Clauer helped train each delegate and the teams prior to attending the national contest.

Pennsylvania has been participating in poultry judging just since 2007, and each of the five teams has placed in the top five, with three being first, one second and one fifth. A Pennsylvania 4-H'er has been high individual in three of the five years.

This annual conference allows 4-Hers from all over the country to compete in educational events that help them learn to make and defend decisions, speak publicly, and gain poultry-related skills. Major support for the state contest and for travel to the national conference is provided by the PennAg Industries Poultry Council, a 4-H endowment started by the PA poultry industry check-off program and a grant from United States Poultry and Egg Association. The United States Poultry and Egg Association is also a major supporter of the national conference.

In addition to these events, the conference includes a poultry careers workshop, providing the 4-H'ers with information from poultry food industry personnel and participants are given pertinent information about career and educational opportunities in poultry industries.

Speakers were Tracey McKinney who spoke about her job with Perdue Farms and Dr. Keith Bramwell who discussed career opportunities available in the poultry industry and how to pursue a college program that will give students diverse experiences in poultry to develop a successful career.

At the 2012 National 4-H Poultry and Egg Conference, 154 senior 4-H'ers representing 25 states participated as teams or individuals in the various events. Twenty-one teams and four independent individuals participated in the Poultry Judging contest and eleven teams competed in the Avian Bowl contest. Twelve individuals participated in the Chicken Barbecue contest and nine in the Turkey Barbecue contest.

The conference was funded through contributions of goods, finances, and services from many individuals, companies, and commodity organizations. A total of 36 donors provided financial support for awards.

The Pennsylvania program strives to provide leadership and training opportunities to 4-H leaders and members. We are always looking for 4-H'ers interested in participating in these contests in the future.  For more information about how to compete for a spot on the national delegation, contact Phillip J. Clauer, 814-863-8960 (office) or pclauer@psu.edu, or visit our web site at http://extension.psu.edu/4-h/projects/poultry/contest-events.