La Vernia FFA brings home national title
La Vernia FFA advisor Kevin Sells (from left) congratulates the National FFA Milk Quality and Products Career Development Event team of Kasey Reinen, Jordan Bailey, Jaelyn Kotzur, and Braden Recker.
The Milk Quality and Products Team from La Vernia High School recently competed and won first place at the National Contest in Louisville, Ky. The team consists of seniors Jordan Bailey and Kasey Reinen, junior Braden Recker, and sophomore Jaelyn Kotzur. This is the 10th national title that La Vernia has received.
The contest consists of eight different factors. The contestants have to complete the following as individuals: determine the off flavors of milk, determine the fat contents of different milks, identify cheese and cheese characteristics, perform a California Mastitis Test, complete a problem-solving test, and take both a production and marketing exam involving the dairy industry.
In addition to the individual part of the contest, as a group they must complete a team activity and give a presentation based upon their results. The team activity consists of the following: perform a titratable acidity test, read the results of a antibiotic snap test, determine the somatic cell count of the milk, determine the standard plate count of the milk, use their knowledge of milk to decide whether or not the freezing point of the milk is too high, and determine whether or not the overall temperature of the load of milk is too high.
The team from La Vernia received first place in the national contest out of 37 other state teams. Kasey placed first as an individual; Jordan, fourth; and Braden, seventh. Jaelyn was a gold emblem candidate, placing in the top one-third of all participants. Kasey also placed second in the fat content identification portion of the contest as well as third in the problem-solving portion. Jordan also placed second in the off flavors of milk portion of the contest. As a group, the team won the team activity as well.
Kasey received a $2,000 scholarship; Jordan, a $1,700 scholarship; Braden, a $1,400 scholarship; and Jaelyn, a $1,000 scholarship for their individual efforts as well as their championship placing.
This year’s national team was coached by Kevin Sells and other chapter advisors, including Jennifer Kotzur and Eric Davis.