Record Attendance at Area Briefings

September 6, 2018

There was a record turnout at the Area Briefings with over 360 people representing 71 UEP member companies.  A majority of Allied members also attended the meetings.  Thank you to all who came to the meetings to receive important industry updates.  UEP President and CEO, Chad Gregory started the briefings with an overview of several industry issues.

  • USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) final rule and conditions under which USDA will pay an indemnity to farms affected by highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI).   Requirements include the adoption of the biosecurity principles established by the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) and passing an audit by the NPIP official state agency for larger-sized operations.
  • Summary on the current situation with LPAI indemnity
  • Updates on CERCLA, EPCRA and WOTUS*
  • Warning and protecting farms against animal activist activities
  • The petition filed by the National Chicken Council regarding hatchery egg
  • Upcoming meetings and conferences

Area Briefings Speakers left to right: Dr. Deana Jones, Dr. Christine Alvarado, Tony Wesner

Dr. Deana Jones, Research Food Technologist at USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) reviewed the Egg Plant Sanitation Study (2005) and discussed the need for collaboration on new research in 2018-2019.  The results will assist the egg industry with data for the development of sanitation best practices.

Tony Wesner, COO of Rose Acre Farms, reviewed events before and after the April egg recall.  Wesner also provided information on the changes made to the plant and equipment to improve sanitation and new protocols that are being implemented at all Rose Acre facilities.

Dr. Christine Alvarado, Professor of Poultry Science from Texas A&M University stressed the importance of creating a culture of food safety and encouraged attendees to utilize the many resources available:  sanitation and equipment companies, university and ARS researchers and UEP staff.  Alvarado presented significant plant-related causes of food safety problems and outlined sanitation standard operating procedures (SSOPs), and good manufacturing practices (GMPs).

At the end of the presentation, briefing participants fielded questions from the expert panel.

This year was the 20th anniversary of UEP Area Briefings.  These meetings, offered in six locations throughout the country, provided an excellent opportunity for members to learn more about critical issues affecting the egg industry and network with industry experts and peers.  Those unable to attend can email Audrey Wierson,, for a copy of the meeting handouts.

* CERCLA - Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act

EPCRA - Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act

WOTUS -  Waters of the United States