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Youth for the Quality Care of Animal


Youth for the Quality Care of Animals (YQCA) program

Quality Assurance programs are a great way to ensure our youth producers are creating a product we can be proud to consume.  We are excited that we have the opportunity to offer this critical educational piece to our youth. This program will allow the 4-H member to learn about the importance of animal-well being, quality assurance practices, and their part in the food production system. Quality Assurance programs are a great way to ensure our youth producers are creating a product we can be proud to consume. Continuing in 2021, any Indiana youth wishing to exhibit Beef, Goat, Poultry, Rabbit, Sheep, Starter Calf, and/or Swine at a county or state fair must have completed a YQCA Certification. 

Please read on to get all of the information for completing YQCA Quality Assurance Program for you and making sure you have met all of your needs. 

What is YQCA?

The Youth for the Quality Care of Animals Program (YQCA) is a program that will provide quality assurance education on all livestock species. YQCA is a national quality assurance program for youth ages 8 to 21 with a focus on three core pillars: food safety, animal well-being, and character development. YQCA includes information for youth exhibiting Beef, Goat, Poultry, Rabbit, Sheep, Starter Calf, and/or Swine.

This is an annual program that can be completed via online modules ($12) or in-person trainings ($3). In-person trainings in Starke County will be free with a coupon for all Starke County 4-H members. Read below to learn how to obtain your coupon code from the Extension Office.  The newest change comes in the form of the online test out option for youth in the intermediate and senior categories. This program is ensuring 4-H members learn about quality assurance and best management with their animals. In-person trainings in Starke County will be free with a coupon for all Starke County 4-H members. Read below to learn how to obtain your coupon code from the Extension Office.

YQCA Objectives

This is an important educational opportunity for 4-H livestock members. Making this an exhibition rule is how Indiana 4-H is ensuring that 4-H members learn about quality assurance. Indiana 4-H is requiring this program so youth learn best management practices with their animals. The YQCA program will: 

  • Ensure that youth livestock exhibitors are better prepared to be ambassadors for animal agriculture.
  • Ensure that animals from youth livestock programs are treated with the utmost care.
  • Ensure that 4-H members are contributing to a safe, wholesome food supply for consumers.
  • Enhance the future of the livestock industry so that today’s youth producers can become more informed producers, consumers, and/or employees of the agriculture and food industry.

More information about YQCA is available at

The Requirements:

Certification in YQCA is a requirement (and it is very good practice) for youth planning to exhibit an animal (Beef, Goat, Poultry, Rabbit, Sheep, Starter Calf, and Swine) in the Starke County 4-H Fair (all other county fairs) and the Indiana State Fair. Our Handbook reads under the General 4-H Livestock Rules and each animal section who is complete the training:

"All livestock 4-H members exhibiting animals in the Beef, Dairy Goat, Meat Goat, Poultry, Rabbit, Sheep, Starter Calf, or Swine projects will annually complete the Youth for Quality of Care of Animals (YQCA) Training."


Dates for Instructor Led Trainings in Starke County:

Date: Saturday, April 17, 2021

Time: 10:00 AM

Location: Starke County Fairgrounds, 4-H Exhibit Building


Date: Thursday, April 22, 2021

Time: 6:00 PM

Location: Starke County Fairgrounds, 4-H Exhibit Building


Date: Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Time: 6:00 PM

Location: Starke County Fairgrounds, 4-H Exhibit Building


Note about Instructor Led Training:

  • You must be preregistered to participate. Sign up early because classes will fill up.
  • Payment with coupon has to be completed online before you can come to training.
  • Please show up early for check in.
  • Classes are limited in size due to space and COVID-19 guidelines.
    • Masks will be worn by everyone.
    • Parents are asked to leave after registration due to meeting capacity guidelines.

How to get certified:

  • There are two ways to complete:
    • Online -  $12.00
    • In-person training - $3.00
    • Test-Out Option (See information below)
    • The cost of these trainings will need to be paid online (for an online training or an instructor led training) to the YQCA Company. The fee covers the cost of the training materials, which are updated each year and the maintenance of the database.
    • All Starke County 4-H members can complete the in-person training ($3) for free. Coupons were donated by the Starke County 4-H Council.

Contact Julia at the Extension Office at 574-772-9141 or email to receive your coupon code needed when registering for an in-person training. Each coupon code is unique.

Those individuals wishing to test out must meet the following criteria:

  • This is only available to youth in the first year of intermediate (age 12) and senior (age 15). There is no test-out option for juniors.  At the bottom of the “Course List” page are the test-out options for these age levels. 
  • The test consists of 50 questions and requires a pass rate of 80% or better for certification. 
  • If passed, the certification will last through the end of a user’s age level (intermediate – ages 12, 13 and 14; senior – ages 15, 16, 17 and 18.
  • The intermediate test-out course will cost $36 ($12 x 3 years of certification) and the senior test-out course will cost $48 ($12 x 4 years of certification.)  If passed, users will receive access to online modules that correspond with the age levels indicated above, found on the user’s “My Library” page. 
  • Users will have one chance to take the test-out option.  If they fail, they will not be provided another opportunity for that level of certification.  If the youth passes, payment for the completed test out course will be required after the completion of the test.  No payment is required to attempt the test.
  • Participants attempting and not passing will be prompted to take the instructor-led training or web-based training annually.

How to Register for YQCA Trainings:

    • Registration for both Online and In-person training will need to be completed at
    • Click on the “Sign In/Registration” Button on the top Right hand side of the screen.
    • Use the “4HOnline Sign In” blue button. Select Indiana 4-H Youth Development as your Organization. You will then enter your 4HOnline account information.
      • By using the 4HOnline log in this information will show up in our database. Do not create a new account. If you have lost your password click the forgot password button.
    • The next menu will ask you to select a 4-H member. Click “select member”, then the consent screen will pop up.
    • On the next screen, you will select a course. Please pay attention as this is by the child’s age.
    • Select the appropriate course based on the 4-Her’s Age. The next screen will ask you to select the type of training you prefer (Online or Instructor Led). 4-Her’s Age is their age as of January 1, 2021.
    • For the instructor-led training:  Select “Indiana” as the state. In the Training Box, select the training you wish to register. Note that all of the trainings in Starke County will start with Starke County.
    • Select purchase course.
    • You will then follow the prompts and add your credit card information or coupon code

You can contact the Purdue Extension- Starke County Office with any questions you may have. We have computers in the office you can use to register for a class. The full letter mailed to all 4-H members enrolled in the above projects and superintendents is available at the bottom of the page.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • When do I need to have my certification complete?: You must complete your certification prior to checking in your animal at the Starke County 4-H Fair. It would be most beneficial for 4-H members to complete the training during one of the two in-person trainings or online training by May 15th. That will allow for 4-H members to put into practice what they learn.
  • What if I show multiple animal species?: You only need to complete the certification once per year, and that will apply to each of your animals. 
  • How long does the in-person class take?: It is approximately one hour and fifteen minutes. 
  • Can I attend a YQCA In-Person Training in another county?: Yes, if our schedule does not work for you, you can attend a class in any other county. 
  • When should I register for a class?: As soon as possible! Space is limited in each class, and we recommend registering at least a week prior to the class being offered. You MUST register for a class before attending. 
  • What if I do not remember my 4HOnline email address?: Contact our office, and we can tell you what it is. If you do not sign in with 4HOnline, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to gain access to your completion information. If you do not remember your password, you can reset that yourself using the "Forgot Password" option at 
  • How long is my certification valid?: Currently, it is a one year certification, but they are looking to add multi-year certifications in the future. 
  • What if I am not selling my animal in the Auction?: This is not an auction requirement, it is an exhibit requirement, so to show your animal, you must complete the certification. 

Online Livestock Animal Identification

NEW for 2021, ALL 4-H Animal Identification is due by May 15th in 4-H Online at

This includes all Cattle, Goats, Horse & Pony, Rabbits, Sheep, Starter Calves, and Swine.

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