Mickey Latour's Main Page
Dr. Latour works with both the poultry and swine sector. A portion of is primarily involved in small poultry flocks both organic and otherwise as well as got involved in a variety of projects, which supported his expertise in poultry, lipid physiology and world wide web experience. Dr. Latour has been involved in providing and facilitating faculty interactions between individuals on the West Lafayette campus and industry leaders.
Small and Large Producer Assistance: One of the fastest growing segments of agriculture is the natural and organic sector. USDA reports that growth in retail sales has equaled 20 percent or more annually since 1990. Organic products are now available in nearly 20,000 natural foods stores, and are sold in 73 percent of all conventional grocery stores. Indiana is well represented in the poultry sector and Dr. Latour assist smaller producers in getting started (conducts poultry workshops on processing, nutrition, etc.,) and helps them in disease control. More specifically, Dr. Latour and two colleagues from Agriculture Economics are investigating the potential of small producers to spread poultry related diseases within the state and beyond the borders in a recently completed USDA grant. Dr. Latour has recently served on the USDA awards panel which distributed $28,000,000 dollars for organic farms and Dr. Latour was the principal poultry and swine person responsible for reviewing those grant applications.
Assistance to Meat Processors: Dr(s) Latour and Swartz are the technical advisors to the Indiana Meat Processors Association. Dr. Latour provides direct assistance to processors on how to best handle bellies of pigs to create the best slice of bacon and expertise on how to create the best bratwurst. In shared responsibilities, workshops on basic knife skills, and pork, beef and poultry processing will be conducted in 2009-2010. Recently, Dr. Latour worked with Farbest Foods (major Turkey processor) in Southern Indiana was experiencing blood spots in breast following stunning and in slices. The work led to new way of handling turkey breast meat using vacuum tumblers in order to extract the blood prior to slicing.