Animal Science Department

College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences

 What's New

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October 21st & 22nd: Grand Opening of the new Meat Processing Center

The new Meat Processing CenterThe grand opening and donor appreciation celebration for the J and G Lau Family Meat Processing Center will be held Friday, Oct 21, 2011, for donors of the Animal Science Department and supporters of the meat processing center. The events are scheduled for late morning, followed by lunch and tours of the new $6.5-million meat processing facility.

On Saturday, Oct. 22, the Animal Science Department will host the Cal Poly community, alumni and friends for the meat processing center open house and facility tours from 1 to 4 p.m. Please mark your calendar and plan to join us for a tour of this state-of-the-art meat facility.

The 14,500-square-foot facility will be completed in early October. The building will contain large animal and poultry harvest labs, fabrication and processing rooms, an innovation kitchen for ready-to-eat product development, a packaging development lab and a small sales room. In addition, the building will include a large conference room, three staff offices, a U.S. Department of Agriculture inspector's office, student lockers and dressing rooms, dry ingredient storage and a laboratory to support food safety research.

For more information about this new facility, visit the J and G Lau Family Meat Processing Center page. For more information about the donor appreciation celebration and open house, please email or contact the Animal Science Department at 805-756-2419.


Cal Poly is 1st University to Earn USDA PVP & HACCP Certification

Aaron Lazanoff and animal science student with USDA auditorCal Poly is the first university in the country to earn U.S. Department of Agriculture certification for its Process Verification Program (PVP). It joins about 35 other organizations, including such industry giants as Cargill, Tyson Fresh Meats and Smithfield Packing.

The USDA PVP certifies the accuracy and integrity of animal information and gives customers confidence that they are buying a consistent product supported by a documented quality control and management system.

Companies with approved PVP programs are able to make marketing claims associated with their process verified points. In Cal Poly's case, those are source and age verification, which documents where the cattle are born and how old they are. This verification makes Cal Poly cattle more marketable, especially on the international front.

Lazanoff, animal science senior Amanda Alford and recent graduate Noah Nelson have worked tirelessly for two years to earn certification. They first worked with PVP specialist Vicki Robertson to write a detailed PVP Quality Manual; then a desk audit was conducted.

In the future, Lazanoff wants to expand the university's PVP to include source and age verification for ouside cattle and wants to go for natural cerification (no hormone treated) cattle, as well.

For more information about Cal Poly's cattle, visit the Beef Program page. For more information about the PVP certification contact Aaron Lazanoff at


New Pact with U.K. Schools Saves Vet Students Time and Money and Lets Them Practice Almost Anywhere

Mark Edwards, Jaymie Noland, Joyce Wason (University of Glasgow, School of Veterinary Medicine), Andy Thulin and Neil Evans (University of Glasgow, School of Veterinary Medicine)Thanks to a new pact among Cal Poly, the University of London's Royal Veterinary College, and the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Glasgow, Scotland, Cal Poly pre-vet students can shave up to two years off a typical American veterinary degree program, save upwards of $90,000 and enjoy an extended stay in the United Kingdom.

The education system in the United Kingdom differs from that of the United States. In the U.K., high school is more like junior college, and students graduate one or two years younger than Americans. Vet schools in the U.K. differ as well. It takes five years to earn a degree, yet is equivalent to U.S. programs lasting seven or eight years (when combined with a bachelor's degree). Their programs are equivalent to our doctor of veterinary medicine degree.

A memorandum of understanding between the three universities would have students attend Cal Poly for three years, then attend a U.K. school for an additional four years. After their first year in the U.K., they would earn a Cal Poly bachelor's degree. When they complete their fourth year in the U.K., they earn a degree in veterinary medicine.

Department Head Andy Thulin and Noland traveled to the U.K. last summer to tour the universities, both of which are accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association, allowing graduates to practice almost anywhere in the world, including the United States.

For more information about this new pact, contact Jaymie Noland at


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