CSU Meat Judging Team hopes to bring home another championship

Delaney Allen

Colorado State University’s animal science students have been outstanding in their field, and the Meat Judging Team has a place in securing their reputation.

For the 2017-2018 school year, the Meat Judging Team traveled to Wagga Wagga, New South Wales, Australia to show their skills and represent the United States at the 2018 Intercollegiate Meat Judging Contest. CSU placed first overall, bringing home the winning title.


Now, as the 2018-2019 championship approaches, the team prepares to develop the skills they will need to move along and win once again.

Joanna Swenson, a master’s student in the Meat Science Department, will be the 2019 judging team coach.

“We check quality grade, which has a lot to do with marbling,” Swenson said. “Marbling is the eating experience, that’s what they’re looking for in a good cut. The USDA has standards for grading, so we teach them what their standards are and they have to evaluate it on their own and are judged based on how close they are to USDA standards.”

The Meat Judging Team is also a good opportunity for animal and food science students to get involved with hands-on experience.

Savannah Millburn, a junior double majoring in animal science and economics, says that the Meat Judging Team is a good program to bridge the gap between college and a future career in animal science.

“Meat judging is a really unique experience within the college of agriculture and the University as a whole,” Millburn said.

If students are interested in being a part of the Meat Judging Team, they must take ANEQ361, which is only available in fall semesters. This course will help future meat judging students to meet the USDA’s expectations.

Wool judging and livestock judging are also available to CSU students who want to participate in the industry.

“Not only is it a competitive event where you can make friends, you also get a lot of good industry experience and make connections with people across the country,” Millburn said.

Delaney Allen can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @DelaneyAllen0.