This conference originated in February 1960, when the University of Nebraska, Department of Veterinary Science organized a "Conference on Swine Repopulation." The purpose of this conference was to advise veterinarians on the application of "disease-free" swine production.
The title of the conference was changed in 1964 in recognition of George A. Young, the late swine research specialist who was instrumental in the development of germ-free swine production.
It was while looking for ways to study swine diseases that Young discovered the technique of taking baby pigs by hysterectomy. At that time, the University paid farmers to raise the University-owned "disease-free" pigs. Since that time, this method of acquiring germ-free pigs has become a major contribution in the establishment of modern breeding stock.
Young, a graduate of the University of Nebraska and Cornell Veterinary College, began his research on germ-free pigs while at the Hormel Institute at the University of Minnesota at Austin. He returned to Nebraska in 1955, and became the Chairman of the Department of Veterinary Science in 1958. He served in that position until his death in 1964.
The purpose of this conference, which has come to be known as the "George A. Young Conference and the Nebraska SPF Conference," has always been to convey the latest information on disease problems and swine management by internationally recognized authorities. It has been attended by veterinarians and swine producers from all the major swine producing states, as well as numerous foreign countries. Proceedings have been distributed internationally.
After separation from the Nebraska SPF agency, the conference was renamed as the George A. Young Swine Herd Health and Management Conference by Dr. Robert Wills. Until 2003, the conference had been held at various locations in Lincoln, NE. After that time, it was moved to South Sioux City, NE. Starting in 2013 the conference will be held at the Veterinary Diagnostic Center in Lincoln, Nebraska.
(Information supplied by lifelong colleague and friend of George A. Young Norman R. Underdahl, Professor, Veterinary Science, Emeritus, and Bruce W. Brodersen, Assistant Professor.)
Veterinary Diagnostic Center, University of Nebraska, Lincoln - 402-472-1434