Contributions to Change
Preparing for and Repairing Prolapse
The Industry Celebrates the Work of Everett Forkner in Pork and Beef Genetics and Production
Everything You Need to Know to Identify and Remedy the Common Condition
MEMBER NEWS 6 Association Update 20 Beef Checkoff News 38 County News
Preparing for and Repairing Prolapse
Contributions to Change
MCA President’s Perspective Leadership on Display
Straight Talk: Mike Deering
On the Edge of Common Sense: Baxter Black
Spring Has Sprung
Capitol Update Happy Easter
The Missouri Beef Cattleman is an official publication of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association.
OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE MISSOURI CATTLEMEN’S ASSOCIATION
Volume 50 - Issue 4 (USPS 890-240 • ISSN 0192-3056) Magazine Publishing Office 2306 Bluff Creek Drive, #100, Columbia, MO 65201 Phone: 573-499-9162 • Fax: 573-499-9167 Andy Atzenweiler: Editor/Production/Ad Sales P.O. Box 480977 • Kansas City, Missouri 64148 816-210-7713 • E-mail: email@example.com Macey Hurst • Ad Sales • 573-821-6982
Missouri Cattlemen’s Association MCA Website: www.mocattle.com
Mike Deering • Executive Vice President - Ext 230 Mike@mocattle.com Sydney Thummel • Manager of Membership - Ext 231 Sydney@mocattle.com Macey Hurst • Manager of Strategic Solutions – Ext. 235 Macey@mocattle.com Candace Bergesch • MBC Editor/Production Artist Candace@mocattle.com Lisa Stockhorst, Administrative Assistant – Ext 234 Lisa@mocattle.com
Missouri’s Cattlemen Foundation www.mocattlemenfoundation.org
New MCA Members
2021 MCA Officers
Patty Wood, President 660-287-7701 • 16075 Wood Road, La Monte, MO 65337 Bruce Mershon, President-Elect 816-525-1954 • 31107 Lake City Buckner Rd., Buckner, MO 64016 David Dick, Vice President 660-826-0031 • 23529 Anderson School Rd., Sedalia, MO 65301 Matt Hardecke, Treasurer 573-846-6614 • 19102 Skymeadows Dr., Wildwood, MO 63069 Charlie Besher, Secretary 573-866-2846 • RR 5, Box 2402, Patton, MO 63662
2021 MCA Regional Vice Presidents
Region 1: Eric Greenley, 61998 Pleasant Valley Rd. Knox City, MO 63446 660-341-8750 Region 2: Chuck Miller, 393 Spring Garden Road Olean, MO 65064 • 573-881-3589 Region 3: Jeff Reed, PO Box 35 Williamsville, MO 63967 • 903-279-8360 Region 4: Deb Thummel, 12601 Hwy. 46 Sheridan, MO 64486 • 660-541-2606 Region 5: John Shipman, 34266 Hwy KK Mora, MO 65345 • 660-221-1013 Region 6: Warren Love, 8381 NE Hwy ZZ Osceola, MO 64776 • 417-830-1950 Region 7: Traves Merrick, 1956 Hwy 97 Miller, MO 65707 • 417-536-8080
Missouri Beef Cattleman, (USPS 890-240 • ISSN 0192-3056) is published monthly (12 times a year) and is the official publication of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association, 2306 Bluff Creek Drive, #100, Columbia, Missouri, 65201. PERIODICALS postage paid at Columbia, Missouri and additional mailing offices. Subscription price is included as a part of the minimum membership dues of $70.00 per year in Missouri Cattlemen’s Association. Postmaster: Send address changes to: Missouri Beef Cattleman, P.O. Box 480977, Kansas City, Missouri 64148
Anna Wickes, Cape Girardeau, MO Anthony Vangennip, Marble Hill, MO Becky Ruth, Festus, MO Bill & Jeff Gholson, Gholson Bros. Farms LLC, Jackson, MO Bradley Metzner, Green Ridge, MO Brandon Bradshaw, Bradshaw Farms, Gordonville, MO Brenden Jones, Jones Farm, Osceola, MO Bret & Sharri Wallace, Wallace Farms, Hopkins, MO Brian Sims, Willard, MO Brooke Stevens, Oronogo, MO Bruce Sassmann, Bland, MO Bruce Elliott, JB Hooks, Lake Ozark, MO Bryan Walsh, Lake St. Louis, MO Colten Catterton, Maryville, MO Craig & Peggy Grisham, Crane, MO Dale Ryan, Silex, MO Dominca Hostetler, Buffalo, MO Doyle Justus, Troy, MO Edwin Headings, Ragweed Ranch, Buffalo, MO Edwin Strubberg, Union, MO Elizabeth Hunt, Burlington Jct., MO Emily Neuenschwander, Deepwater, MO Gary Wyrick, Wyrick Farm, Wyandotte, OK Gary Wiley, G & Triple J Farms, Gladwin, MI Glenna Schantz, Maryville, MO Greg Adkins, Burlington Jct, MO Isaac & Tara Fritchey, Fritchey Farm, Anderson, MO Jerry & Ellen Cassady, St. Joseph, MO Jonathan Shrock, Middletown, MO Jonny Gray, J-L Cattle Co., Greenfield, MO
Justin Keune, Laclede, MO Justin Ruddick, Ruddick Brothers Farms, LLC, Anderson, MO Kenny Hostetler, Buffalo, MO Leon Luthi, Jasper, MO Mark Hanselmann, HBM Cattle, Jackson, MO Mark Shrock, Buffalo, MO Mark & Gaye Puchbauer, Jackson, MO Mike & Angie Mallery, Lenox Farms LLC, Rolla, MO Morris Swartzentruber, Buffalo, MO Myron Hostetler, Bolivar, MO Nick Martin, Anderson, MO Noah Mormann, Mormann Farms, Jefferson City, MO Randy Kropf, Halfway, MO Randy & Debra Garrett, Lamar, MO Ray Behning, Raymore, MO Ronald Stoll, Ronnie Stoll Farms, Stanberry, MO Ryan Cable, Halfway, MO Shane McCaslin, Sheldon, MO Stanley Kropf, Kropf Cattle LLC, Louisburg, MO Sydney Harrison, Auxvasse, MO Thomas Wann, Wann Farm, De Soto, MO Tim & Tracie Elbert, Elbert Farms, Seneca, MO Tobe Hostetler, Buffalo, MO Wade Bond, Iberia, MO Zach Ruediger, New Haven, MO Jansen Farms, Leopold, MO C&R Market Boonville, Booneville, MO BTC Bank, Buffalo, MO
See the MCA Membership Form on page 93
APRIL 2021 7
Leadership on Display It has been a year since the COVID-19 pandemic brought meetings, events and normal business functions to a halt. However, I am here to tell you that our association is kicked into high gear, encouraging each of us to be engaged leaders for the beef industry. Every Wednesday, cattlemen and cattlewomen from all regions of our state put boots on the ground at the capitol. There is nothing more powerful in Jefferson City than the voices of constituents advocating for MCA’s priority issues. I encourage each of you to contact your regional vice president to sign up for an opportunity to have input on critical issues impacting the cattle industry. Together we have a stronger voice. The MCA County Leadership Conference and first session of the Missouri Cattlemen’s Leadership College 2021 took place in March. Our staff did an amazing job of organizing sessions focusing on building leadership qualities. It was rewarding for me to be involved at the two-day event with these members as they learned tools to enhance their county organizations as well as engaging in the political process at the capitol. As I go around the state meeting with our affiliates, I am inspired by the leaders, that means YOU, making a difference. When most of us think of leaders, we focus on individuals who stand out as popular, powerful or highly influential. But true leadership isn’t defined by those qualities. It is in each of us through our actions, by demonstrating values such as honesty and respect, inspiring trust and loyalty through integrity, and leading by example. In order to teach others to take responsibility and leadership
in their own work and lives, a strong leader strives always to demonstrate and model these qualities. I am encouraged by our members as they conduct themselves in a manner that they expect others in the organization to follow, including striving for excellence. Integrity comes from knowing who you are, being clear on your core values and what you stand for, and then behaving and speaking in line with all of that. With a shared vision, leaders work with others in the organization to envision the possibilities of what the organization can become and do. I am energized by our members in their commitment to having and attending regular meetings, educational opportunities, community beef promotion events and celebrating accomplishments. As advocates for the beef industry, continue to share your story and your passion. In my leadership role as your president, I am inspired to lead by example. “Leadership is not about being in charge. Leadership is about taking care of those in your charge.” I want you to become more passionate, more hopeful, more inspired. I want you to feel empowered, equipped and on fire. I want you to believe in yourself because I believe in YOU!
with Mike Deering T-Ball Politics Charley is now five years old. It is hard to believe I am going to have a kindergartner this year. We are trying to familiarize him with other kids he will be going to school with. We signed him up for t-ball, and I have the airhorns ready. He and his mother are convinced I am taking this too seriously and will embarrass him. Little did I know, t-ball is not what it used to be. There are essentially no real rules, and they do not keep score. It is a free-for-all likened to a fishless fishing derby at a kiddie pool where everyone gets a trophy.
As I am biting my tongue so I do not develop a reputation as the crazy parent prior to my son entering kindergarten, I cannot help but compare this to politics. Politicians seem to need everyone to feel warm and fuzzy in order to stay in office. You could say they are buying votes. Instead of focusing on true COVID-19 relief, we have a $1.9 trillion Christmas tree signed by President Biden full of trophies unrelated to the pandemic. While there is good in this package, taxpayers should not be forced to fund pet projects disguised as COVID relief. Let me be abundantly clear that this is not the first time we have seen this happen, and I have witnessed it over the years from both political parties.
Missouri Congressman Jason Smith was quoted by NPR as saying, “…less than 9% of the entire spending in this bill actually goes to crushing the virus and helping distribute vaccines and putting shots in arms.” I have not done the calculations, but a quick glance at the 628-page bill sheds light on many initiatives that have seemingly zero to do with the pandemic. The package includes millions of dollars carved out for specific universities; $270 million for endowments for arts and
Executive Vice President humanities; $200 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services; and so much more I struggle tying to the pandemic. On the agriculture front, the package provides $5 billion for socially disadvantaged farmers of color, including $4 billion for the forgiveness of outstanding debt and $1 billion for outreach and grants. We can debate this at a later date, but I do not believe this has one thing to do with the pandemic. I do not see how anyone could argue otherwise. The bottom line is the relief package turned into a free-for-all with balls flying and children (politicians) laughing. The problem is we are paying for this $1.9 trillion t-ball game. In the real world of t-ball, at least kids are having fun and learning social skills. It is up to parents or guardians to fill in the blanks when it comes to winning and losing. I cannot come up with a positive when it comes to t-ball politics. They are handing out cash prizes at the expense of taxpayers and punishing the next generation of t-ball players. It is on us to demand better and elect leaders at all levels of government, regardless of political party, who are not worried about passing out trophies, but rather focused on common sense solutions to real problems.
Optimism in Beef Industry Fueled by Strong Demand with Higher Prices Anticipated Source: NCBA Despite pandemic disruptions, consumer demand for beef at home and around the globe remained strong in 2020, a trend that will continue in 2021 and beyond, especially as foodservice operations begin to fully reopen. The strong demand, combined with expected higher cattle prices, signal an optimistic future for the beef industry, according to CattleFax, which presented an outlook session during the virtual 2021 Cattle Industry Convention Winter Reboot on February 24. According to CattleFax CEO Randy Blach, cattle numbers will continue to contract in 2021, and producers will gain leverage on packers and retailers and margin distribution will be more equitable. Packing capacity is expected to increase slowly with the addition of more small-scale plants, and U.S. meat exports will continue to grow. Overall, profitability is expected to improve significantly for cow/calf producers. Lost incomes due to unemployment were replaced by government transfer benefits and household wealth increased more than $620 billion in 2020, according to Blach. In 2020, total meat sales volume at retail was up 10 percent and total dollar sales at retail up 18 percent, with beef’s share of the increase in spending accounting for 45 percent or $5.7 billion. Consumers also saved at record levels during the pandemic resulting in U.S. household net worth rising $5 trillion, which bodes well for beef demand going forward.
As beef demand reached record highs in 2020, cattle producers didn’t capture much of the margin with the bottleneck created due to plant closures as a result of COVID-19. According to Blach, the margin exists, and redistribution will lead to improving prices in the second half of 2021 and into 2022 and 2023. “The bottom line is that things are on the mend, with producers gradually recapturing margin,” he said. “A one percent shift in margin will result in $6 per hundredweight increase on fed price.”
Kevin Good, vice president of industry relations and analysis at CattleFax, reported that 1.2 million head of cattle were liquidated in 2019-2020 after a 6.3 million head expansion between 2014 and 2018. Even with fewer cattle in the system, beef production still increased. Mild liquidation is anticipated in 2021 due to drought conditions and higher feed costs, said Good, and he estimates a U.S. beef cow inventory of just under 31 million head in 2022.
Good says 2021 is a tale of two halves. “There are more cattle in the system early in 2021 with big supplies on feed and heavy weights, however the second part of the year will transition to tighter calf crops and tighter slaughter,” he said. In 2021, total slaughter is expected to be up 700,000 head to 33.5 million head, average carcass weights 4 pounds lighter and beef production up 500 million pounds from 2020 to 27.6 billion pounds. Per capita beef consumption is expected to grow slightly to 58.6 pounds per person in 2021, up from 58.5 pounds in 2020, although per capita red meat and poultry consumption is expected to decrease to 218.7 pounds per person from 221.7 pounds per person in 2020. “Over the last 20 years, beef market share increased from 40 to 48 percent, up 2 percent in 2020,” said Good. “Improvements in genetics, quality and consistency have created a better product from five or ten years ago and have helped increase demand, taking market share away from pork and poultry.” Good forecasts the average 2021 fed steer price at $119 per hundredweight, up from $109 per hundredweight in 2020, with a range of $110-$128 per hundredweight throughout the year. All cattle classes are expected to trade higher than a year ago, and prices are expected to improve over the next three to four years. The 800-lb. steer price is expected to average $145 per hundredweight with a range of $135-$160 per hundredweight, and the 550-lb. steer price is expected to average $168 per hundredweight, with a range of $160$180 per hundredweight. Finally, Good forecasts utility cows at an average of $64 per hundredweight with a range of $52-$74 per hundredweight. Trade continues to be a hot topic, with U.S. beef prices competitive for Asian markets. According to Good, exports in 2021 are expected to increase by 5% primarily to Asian markets like Japan, South Korea and China, with declining imports from Australia and New Zealand. Although only 120 million pounds of beef were exported to China in 2020, that market is expected to grow to more than 300 million pounds per year over the next few years. “The U.S. is the largest beef producer on the planet, producing 75 percent of all high-quality fed beef in the world, and our product is different from competitors,” said Blach. “As the global population increases at a rate of 83 million people per year, U.S. agriculture is poised to play a key role with increasing exports.”
Mike Murphy, CattleFax vice president of research and risk management services, estimates that there will be 181 million planted acres of corn and soybeans in 2021, the largest ever combined acres for those two commodities. “That number is likely to be even higher, and in some regards it needs to be larger to balance the demand and build back supply,” said Murphy. Although corn should be able to balance supply and demand, soybeans will have a tighter supply globally, with a smaller crop expected from South America. As China rebuilds its pork industry following their battle with African Swine Fever, they are looking for higher quality feed ingredients, such as corn and soybeans, according to Murphy. The U.S. has the supply available to provide the estimated 700 million bushels of corn that China is expected to accept. Spot prices for soybeans are expected to be $13.50$16.50 per bushel for the remainder of 2021. “As soybean prices drive higher, soybeans will have a greater influence on the value of corn, bringing corn prices with it,” said Murphy. He noted, however, than any scares from Mother Nature this spring and summer will have concerning impacts. All session panelists agreed that weather will be a major factor impacting the beef industry, and agriculture as a whole in 2021. Although the La Niña weather pattern has leveled off, it will be making a return with warm
and dry conditions over most of the United States into the summer, according to Dr. Art Douglas, professor emeritus at Creighton University. Douglas indicated that the southwest U.S. will be warmer than normal, and the western half of the country will be relatively dry. In addition, dry conditions in the Rockies will eventually extend into the central corn belt, causing concerns for corn and soybean growers. “The Pacific jet stream is positioned far north from normal preventing moisture from reaching the continent,” said Douglas. “The only significant moisture will be in the Ohio Valley and along the Canadian border from northeast North Dakota into Minnesota.” Blach concluded the session with an overall positive outlook, expecting beef demand to remain solid, foodservice markets improving significantly and beef and cattle prices trending higher through 2024. He also noted that plant-based protein alternatives will continue to grow market share, but gains will be slow. Blach indicated that increased consumer interest in sustainability, food safety protocols, animal care and traceability creates opportunities for producers to differentiate their products if they choose. “Consumers are voting with their pocketbooks and buying beef,” said Blach. “The industry should take note, stay focused on quality, continue delivering what the consumer desires and tell their great story.”
APRIL 2021 15
Embracing the Positives in Sustainable Cattle Production Source: NCBA Cattlemen and women are the original climate heroes, preserving natural resources for generations, while producing safe, affordable and abundant protein for the world to enjoy. In a presentation during the 2021 Cattle Industry Convention Winter Reboot on Feb. 24, speakers discussed how cattle production contributes positively to society. Dr. Myriah Johnson, senior director of beef sustainability research for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), started the session posing a question often seen in media headlines: “How do we feed the planet in 2050?”. Johnson explained the desire that exists to feed people in a way that is sustainable for generations in the future, and how beef plays a critical role in that sustainable food system. “The fundamental value proposition of beef to the food system is the transformation of lower value resources, such as grasses and plant byproducts, to higher value protein full of micronutrients, which nourishes people,” Johnson said. Although people often have different definitions of sustainability, responses generally fall into three major pillars including economic viability, environmental stewardship and social responsibility. Science-based evidence demonstrates how cattle management efforts are making positive contributions to all three pillars.
Johnson provided an overview of the economic and social benefits of the beef industry including its impact on local, regional and national economies, tax contributions, job creation, rural development and food security, among others. According to a forthcoming report on the Economic Contributions of the U.S.
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Beef Industry, more than 27 billion pounds of beef are produced annually, providing 144 billion, 3-ounce servings of beef. In addition, U.S. beef production and processing contributes $167 billion in gross sales and supports a labor force of more than 721,400 workers. “It matters that the beef industry exists, and research shows its impact on communities,” Johnson said. Dr. Jason Sawyer, associate professor and research scientist with the King Ranch® Institute for Ranch Management, focused on beef’s role in the environmental pillar of sustainability. Sawyer suggested the industry focus on the term “climate neutral” which means implementing systems that have minimal effect on projected global temperature change. According to Sawyer there is a lot of confusion about methane and its actual impact on the environment. “Methane is a natural result of ruminant digestion and can’t be eliminated without forsaking the critical capacity to upcycle human inedible feedstuffs,” he said. There is 600 times more carbon dioxide in the
atmosphere than methane and unlike methane, which disappears from the atmosphere in 8-12 years, carbon dioxide doesn’t break down. “Overall, the U.S. beef industry’s contribution to atmospheric methane is very small, but even annual reductions of .5 or 1.5 percent in methane emissions can help lead the industry to climate neutrality in the near future,” Sawyer said. Although often overlooked, the beef industry has positive environmental impacts when it comes to landbased carbon removal. Carbon uptake through grazing lands can help offset non-methane emissions currently attributed to beef production according to Sawyer. If the warming potential of methane is properly accounted for, and current levels of carbon uptake are included in the greenhouse gas profile of beef systems, U.S. beef producers might already be approaching climate neutral
production. Both speakers discussed the benefits of grazing to the social and economic pillars of sustainability in addition to environmental. “Cattle don’t just use the land, they help protect ecosystems, soil health and wildlife in addition to protecting public safety by reducing fire risk,” Johnson said. “And, if cattle weren’t grazing on federal lands, more expensive mechanical management would be required.” Johnson summarized the session and said, “Beef is good for people, the planet and profit, and it is the complete package across all three pillars of sustainability.” Sawyer agreed and added, “Beef sustainability is a complex subject, but there is a lot to be excited about. Production of beef is not degrading the planet, but rather improving the planet while feeding the world.”
Cattlemen Support the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2021 Source: NCBA The Death Tax Repeal Act of 2021 was introduced this week by U.S. Senator John Thune of South Dakota and U.S. Representatives Sanford Bishop (D-GA) and Jason Smith (R-MO). The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) issued the following statement in support of bipartisan legislation to repeal the federal estate tax, commonly referred to as the death tax. “The estate tax disproportionately harms cattle producers because with few options to pay off tax liabilities, many farm and ranch families are forced to make tough choices at the time of death – and in worst case scenarios, must sell off land to meet their federal tax burden,” said NCBA President Jerry Bohn.
“As small business owners, environmental stewards, and the economic backbone of rural communities across the country, U.S. cattle producers understand and appreciate the role of taxes in maintaining and improving our nation. However, they also believe that the most effective tax code is an equitable one. For this reason, NCBA ardently supports the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2021,” Bohn said. Earlier this month, NCBA sent a letter to Senator Thune, as well as Reps. Bishop and Smith in support of the bipartisan legislation.
An estimated 2,000 acres of agricultural land is paved over, fragmented, or converted to uses that compromise agriculture each day in the United States. With more than 40 percent of farmland expected to transition in the next two decades,
Congress must prioritize policies that support land transfers to the next generation of farmers and ranchers. Most farm estate values can be attributed to non-liquid assets such as the fair market value of land, livestock, and equipment.
January Red Meat Exports Below Year-Ago Levels Amid Transportation, Labor Challenges Source: USMEF U.S. beef and pork exports opened 2021 below the large volumes posted a year ago, according to January data released by USDA and compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF). Beef exports totaled 105,047 metric tons (mt) in January, down 2% from a year ago, while value slipped 3% to $653 million. The decline was due mainly to lower beef variety meat shipments, as muscle cut exports were steady with January 2020 at 81,398 mt, valued at $584.4 million (down 1%) and accounted for a larger share of production than a year ago. January beef exports were very strong to South Korea and continued to gain momentum in China. Following a down year in 2020, exports also rebounded to the Middle East. January pork exports totaled 248,656 mt, down 9% from a year ago but slightly above USMEF’s projections. Export value was down 13% to $642.8 million. Pork muscle cut exports were down 11% in volume (208,234 mt) and 15% in value ($551.3 million), while pork variety meat shipments trended modestly higher than a year ago. While pork exports to China/Hong Kong declined as expected, exports to Japan increased in January and demand was very strong in Central America, the Philippines and the Caribbean.
U.S. lamb exports climbed 7% in January to 1,027 mt but value fell 43% to $1.2 million, as volume growth was driven by lamb variety meat demand in Mexico and
Canada. Lamb muscle cut exports trended higher than a year ago to Bermuda and Japan. USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom said January represented a fairly solid start to 2021, but cautioned that exports still face COVID-related obstacles and significant transportation and labor challenges. “As key destinations for U.S. red meat roll out COVID vaccination programs, the outlook for 2021 is optimistic, with retail meat demand remaining strong and the expectation that foodservice will rebound in more and more regions,” Halstrom said. “But transportation challenges are currently a dominant concern, particularly the congestion and container shortages at our West Coast ports where shorthanded crews are handling record-large cargo volumes. Labor is also at a premium in processing plants, which affects the industry’s ability to fully capitalize on demand for certain labor-intensive cuts and variety meat items. “Although the global foodservice sector still has a long recovery ahead, international demand for U.S. red meat remains impressive and resilient,” Halstrom added. “But a range of logistical challenges must be overcome in order to fully satisfy this demand.” A detailed summary of the January export results, including market-specific highlights, is available from the USMEF website.
BEEF CHECKOFF NEWS Consumer Perceptions of Cattle Production When it comes to making a meal decision, many factors are top of mind for consumers. For example, most consumers are thinking about taste, convenience, value, safety and even health—but how many are truly concerned about beef production? Of those consumers with concerns about cattle production, 32% are concerned about animal welfare.1 While this is not near the levels of the previously mentioned factors, it is a number that has grown since 2018 and is worth investigating. 1 Using the Consumer Beef Tracker, a continuous online survey run by National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, on behalf of the Beef Checkoff, shows most consumers trust in many aspects related to raising cattle and the beef industry overall. However, some people are unsure. This is likely due to the low level of knowledge that consumers have related to cattle production. Consumers are further away from their food than ever before. In fact, only 27% of consumers report that they are familiar with how cattle are raised.1 Yet, 70% of consumers consider how their food was raised or grown when making meal decisions.1 This poses a problem as consumers care about the topic, but don’t understand it.
As a result, NCBA conducted extensive research with consumers, utilizing qualitative and quantitative approaches, to better understand consumer perceptions regarding cattle production. The research also evaluated the potential of making the Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) program consumer facing. The hypothesis was that orienting this program towards consumers could provide a means to educate and alleviate concerns with cattle production.
The research started with the qualitative phase. Using focus groups, the objective was to understand what consumers knew to be true about cattle and what positive or negative perceptions they had before determining reactions to BQA. The focus groups consisted of 9 different groups of 4 consumers, across 3 U.S. cities from the west coast to the east coast. The quantitative method leveraged an online survey of a national representative sample of 1,003 consumers.
The objective of this phase was to validate results from the qualitative portion. Consumers who responded to the survey either had to eat beef or were not currently avoiding it (i.e. were not vegetarians). Discussions with consumers started high-level about food production before diving into beef. What was immediately apparent was how little consumers knew. Even recruiting consumers who claimed to be knowledgeable or interested in the topic of food production, most struggled to elaborate. When directly asked how cattle are raised, there was silence in the rooms. The results were similar when asking consumers in the online survey: “I have no idea about the beef life cycle.” “I really have no clue whatsoever what goes into the life cycle [of cattle].” Most concerning were the misconceptions for how cattle are produced when consumers did have something to say. Though most consumers were unable to describe the life cycle of cattle, those who did were quick to highlight that cattle live in crowded conditions or mention how cattle were generally mistreated. Some examples: “Cattle are raised quickly and fed cheaply. They’re pumped with hormones and antibiotics that transfer to the meat we eat when they’re slaughtered.” “Birth, separation, shots/exam, fattened in crowded conditions, divided for type of sale, slaughtered, package, store?” These misconceptions were further validated when consumers were provided with an aided list of potential life cycles for cattle and 43% of them chose options that included cattle living in confinement all their lives. But aside from a low knowledge level, consumers still had warranted concerns specific to cattle production. Top of mind concerns that came up in focus groups included animal treatment, what cattle eat, and hormone and antibiotic use. For many, the misperceptions lead to two notions for how beef is produced. One idea is that beef comes from mass produced, large, corporate farms. The
belief is these companies only focus on money and they are the ones responsible for inhumane treatment and overcrowded conditions. Consumers felt this is where most conventional beef comes from. The second notion is the small, family farm. Many believe this is a dying branch, but the ones that do exist have better practices, better conditions, and lead to higher quality beef. They also associate beef that is organic and grassfed with these operations. Obviously, this is not the case. While it may not seem like it on the surface, an underlying benefit to this realization is that the industry has a tremendous opportunity to educate on this topic. Most, if not all cattle farms and ranches, are producing beef the way consumers want to envision them being produced. It is simply a matter of continuing to educate and promote this information to make consumers aware of this fact. While these findings are significant, it is important to keep them in perspective. During the online survey we asked consumers how much of an impact the living conditions, overall treatment, and even what cattle are fed, had on their beef purchase behavior. The majority of consumers did not indicate those factors were driving their overall buying decision. In fact, even in this production related conversation, attributes such as quality, taste, and price still drove purchase behavior over production related worries.
program represents most of the beef at their grocery store.2 NCBA, on behalf of the Beef Checkoff, is always looking at ways to have content or programs that can represent the entire industry. To be able to have a program that consumers feel represents the beef they personally buy, is a big win for the industry. Last, one of the most significant outcomes of learning about BQA for consumers, was the impact it had on perceptions of how cattle are raised. Prior to learning about the program 44% had positive perceptions about cattle production, after—70% had positive perceptions.2 Based off this research, it is clear consumers lack an understanding of how cattle are raised, but that BQA provides ample opportunity to educate them on this topic. However, it is important to find the right balance of information depending on the type of consumer. Not only does BQA help inform consumers, but it also impacts how they feel about beef overall, which in turn makes it easier for them to choose beef. . National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Consumer Beef Tracker, 2019 . National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Responsible Beef Exploration, 2018-2019
After understanding consumer’s general perceptions and mindset regarding cattle production, both the focus groups and online survey gained more feedback about the BQA program using the BQA program description, facts, and videos. Consumers initial reactions in the focus groups were positive and favorable towards the BQA program. In particular, consumers liked: • This is a voluntary program for beef farmers and ranchers • The program focuses on animal treatment and antibiotic guidelines • That the program also ultimately improves the quality of beef For many, learning about the program’s existence was enough to ease concerns. For others, learning about the program led to more questions, but consumers claimed these questions would likely be solved with an option to learn more, such as through the BQA website. APRIL 2021
In general, knowing about the BQA program adds a layer of confidence among consumers. After learning about the program, 70% agreed it increased their confidence in the beef they eat is safe, 67% agreed that it increased their confidence that cattle are humanely raised, and 62% agreed that beef under the BQA
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Callahan Brothers: Building Upon the Legacy Source: Limousin Latest - By Nicole Richardson For over three decades the Callahan family has strived to build their operation with quality Limousin cattle. Brothers TJ and Jake Callahan are striving to build upon the legacy their father founded back in 1990. Based in Centerview, Missouri the Callahan’s run their operation on owned and rented ground across a thirtymile spread in the area. “We are right around the three hundred head mark, which was our goal at one time. Now we are looking forward to three hundred fifty or four hundred head,” says TJ. Watching the growth in their operation has provided pride beyond measure; but while looking to the future it is clear the growth will continue. The brother duo says, “Ultimately we would like to own everything outright, eliminating the debt lowers the overhead which would allow us to operate easier.” In a world where cattle margins are tighter than ever it is important to carefully watch the operation input. Feed costs account for a large part of input budgets, so a careful balance must be provided. Backgrounding cattle demands enough feed to have the average daily gain (ADG) at peak performance, while mitigating the cost of that feed. “We have started using silage and that has helped cut back on the amount of grain fed,” says TJ. Also helping with feed input cost is the brother’s feed business. They mix and deliver bulk feed to clients across the area while also able to provide their own product. Ensuring the proper mix and amount of feed for the cattle during each stage is crucial to their outstanding ADG numbers. Creep is fed as calves and once they move to the background pen they are started on a total mixed ration (TMR) which consists of silage, corn, and a complete pellet.
“We build them up to seven hundred fifty or eight hundred pounds through a balanced diet and then send them to market,” says the brothers.
Building the herd to its current size and growing their feed business has allowed Jake to work the farm full time.
“An ultimate goal would be for us both to be able to work the farm full time along with my son, but for now I continue to work off-farm full time,” says TJ. Running a herd split between spring and fall calving allows them to be more critical of the head they retain versus the ones they sell. Having two seasons of calving allows them to work through and rotate heifers and cows to ensure their efficiency during the calving season. This also provides them with a twice a year opportunity to sell beef direct to consumers. TJ says, “We take orders for spring and fall sales and keep enough head back for that. It is usually somewhere around fifteen to twenty head each year.” The brothers attribute a host of their success to their critical culling protocol. Evaluating docility, confirmation, birth weight, and calving ease they can easily group them into a keep or cull group. “We’re looking to raise the fertility level of our cattle, so now we’re picky; if they are open, they are gone,” says the brothers. Evaluating their head this specifically calls for detailed records. As most traditional producers the Callahan Brothers utilize a paper record system. That system provides them birth and weaning weights, and any other illness or treatment records that provides them with a clear picture of each cow’s health and performance. As the world transitions from hard copy to digital, producers may find it tedious to change how they keep their records. North American Limousin Foundation’s DigitalBeef system is a convenient way to input records and have traits logged digitally. “It will be easy once I get comfortable with it, having everything right there will be great,” says TJ.
“We do a good job and people see our success and that spreads through word of mouth. If we continue to perform then it will help push the breed,” says TJ.
Bringing the Limousin breed back into the commercial sector is a goal the Callahan Brothers are hoping to aid in. Several breed characteristics make Limousin an ideal commercial beef breed. “Muscling, that’s a big one and average daily gain after weaning. The performance after weaning for the Limousin breed is outstanding,” says the brothers. With their outstanding leadership and production, the Callahan Brothers hope they can provide insight to other commercial producers to the benefits of the breed. Continuing to build their commercial operation on the solid Limousin foundation their father started has proven successful, and they want to share that success with other commercial producers.
The benefits to adding Limousin traits to a commercial herd can be observed in the Callahan operation. The performance of the breed during the backgrounding stage has proven to be profitable, even in uncertain years as of late. With lean cattle margins producers are forced to think out of the box to continue being profitable. One solution seems simple: adding performance characteristics. “We have a small registered herd and raise our own bulls, I’m hoping with our performance being seen that more producers will look to add a proven Limousin bloodline to their operation,” says TJ. By proving the benefits of Limousin characteristics with their intensive herd management the Callahan operation proves to be an essential component to promotion of the breed. Many years of continued hard work and dedication has brought their operation to the forefront of the Limousin community and provided them a spotlight to promote the breed in a commercial setting.
APRIL 2021 33
Limousin Junior Spotlight: Dalton Edwards Source: Limousin Latest - By Nicole Richardson Growing up in the show cattle industry is often considered a privilege by many. Lucky for Dalton Edwards of Higginsville, Missouri he gets to continue to be a part of the future of the industry. Continuing his family’s legacy Dalton continues to promote and protect the breed he has grown up with. The Edwards family got their start in Limousin cattle in 1998. Since that time, he has gotten to experience many seasons filled with memories and bonds forged with other like-minded youth in agriculture. When asked what his all-time favorite show would be his answer was quick and precise, “Junior Nationals,” he said. At shows like that it’s a cumulation of competition, family, rivalries, and camaraderie. Life lessons are learned in and out of the show ring and having those opportunities helps Dalton and many others opportunities to help them continue to grow in agriculture.
Continuing to be involved in the breed, Dalton has taken responsibility for coaching and mentoring his younger cousins with their show calves. He says, “Showing Limousin cattle and being around the great group of people has helped me choose a career.” He wants to provide those opportunities for the younger generations and continue to see the breed grow. He attributes a large part of the path he has chosen to follow with his future to the opportunities he had as a youth in the Limousin breed. “In ten years I hope to be involved with the breed through the marketing side,” says Dalton. As a solid breed with desirable reproduction and commercial characteristics Dalton wants to continue to be an integral part of the breed’s growth within the industry. In true 2020 fashion, Dalton has struggled watching the effects of the pandemic on the show industry. “All of the shows that were cancelled and the restrictions that had to be implemented has been hard to see,” he says. Each show is an opportunity for each exhibitor to showcase themselves and their hard work, and he believes they missed out on many of those instances this year. In spite of current restrictions and “new normals” Dalton is looking forward to being a continued advocate for Limousin cattle and see them continue to thrive in the future. He leaves younger showmen with this advice, “Have fun and enjoy every moment of every show.”
Dalton expresses one of the hardest parts about getting older and having to miss out on showing is the lack of competition. That adrenaline rush, seeing your hard work come down to a moment in time is all worth it. “I miss having the competition. I’m a very competitive person who treats everything as it is something to win,” says Dalton. He has let his love of rivalry lead him to Culver-Stockton College in Canton, Missouri. There he extends his competitive nature to the football field. Dalton is an integral part of the line for a team that has turned their success around during his tenure. Success of a team is often credited to leadership, and it is not just the coaches who are leaders. Dalton’s need for the competition, leadership skills, and ability to make family
out of friends can be attributed to his life experience within the Limousin organization. “My favorite memory being a part of the Limousin breed is the unbreakable bond I have developed with people, it’s truly like a family,” states Dalton.
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St. Clair County Cattlemen’s Association St. Clair County Cattlemen’s Association met on Tuesday, March 9, at Landmark Restaurant with 39 members and guest present. Wesley Tucker with the University of Missouri Extension gave a presentation on What Data Says About Your Cattle. Wesley talked about the effects of COVID to the cattle market. COVID has affected the cattle market in a number of ways, from feeder cattle being bigger than they should, to beef demand, to price fluctuation. What a person needs to be able to know is their cattle, and that not all cattle are created equal. Do not feed your cattle just because you don’t like the market prices. Health and management matter a great deal in deciding when and what is right for your cattle. Thank you, Wesley Tucker, for speaking to our group and Wheeler Livestock Auction for sponsoring our meeting! Thank you, Landmark Restaurant, for the warm, delicious meal!
There were 39 people in attendance at the St. Clair County Cattlemen’s meeting in March.
MoBeef for MoKids donation dates for next school year are being planned. Any person or business interested in donating please see Weston Shelby or Lawanna Salmon so they can get it marked down. Monetary donations are being taken to help the Cattlemen purchase cattle when no one has one ready to go at the scheduled time. St. Clair County Cattlemen’s Scholarship application is now available and due to Susan Salmon by April 1, 2021. Any high school senior or college freshman pursing an agriculture degree that needs a scholarship application, please contact Susan Salmon at
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Wesley Tucker with the University of Missouri Extension spoke at the St. Clair County meeting in March.
firstname.lastname@example.org. The Cattlemen plan to award three scholarships of $2,000 each this year. The Cattlemen will be holding a ½ Beef Raffle this year again. Tickets are $5 each. The winner will win ½ a beef and processing. The drawing will be held on September 4, 2021, and the beef will go to Buchen Beef on September 7, 2021. All proceeds from the Beef Raffle will go to support the Scholarship Fund. The next meeting is scheduled for April 13, 2021, at 7 p.m. at Farmhouse Kitchen and will be sponsored by Appleton City Feed Service.
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Dallas County Cattlemen’s Association Members of the Dallas County Cattlemen’s Association (DCCA) heard about a variety of topics at the group’s last two meetings. Both were held at Prairie Grove School facilities south of Buffalo. The February 23 meeting was sponsored by Zinpro Corp., Kent Feeds and Kropf Feeds. The 120 members in attendance heard Adam Warren, account manager for Zinpro Corp., speak about his company’s trace mineral program. As an industry leader, Zinpro minerals deliver performance and profitability to beef cow/calf, transition and feedlot operations across the world. Since 1927, Kent Feeds has offered high-quality livestock products made with the best nutritional ingredients. The company offers products for multiple species. Kent Territory Sales Manager Dalton Ewing informed meeting attendees about beef cattle products his company offers for all life stages and feed types.
Dalton Ewing from Kent Feeds spoke at the Dallas County meeting.
DCCA members who renewed their membership that evening or anyone who signed up to become a member were given a bag of mineral, which was donated by Rodney Kropf of Kropf Feeds. Thirty people took home a bag of mineral that night. Members and guests enjoyed a meal catered by Rib Crib earlier that evening. Our March 9 meeting and meal was sponsored by BTC Bank of Buffalo, represented by Seth Cline and Jim Krueger. We appreciate Region 6 Vice-President Warren Love for attending and offering remarks. Attendees heard from Jared Wareham, ABS NuEra business development manager for North America. Wareham said the goal of NuEra Genetics is to deliver genetics that are more profitable across the beef supply chain. As part of a whole herd genetic solution for commercial beef customers, the program is designed to meet customer needs by creating a calf that is more valuable at marketing.
Adam Warren from Zinpro also spoke at the Dallas County meeting.
Also visiting with the group that evening was Wes Davies representing Missouri Prime Beef Packers of Pleasant Hope. The 100,000 sq. ft. facility will have the capacity to process 500 head per day and will custom process cattle for a variety of programs that emphasize a connection between the consumer and producer.
We want to thank all our sponsors and speakers at our recent meetings. It is nice to be holding meetings again and seeing old friends and familiar faces. The April 13 DCCA meeting will feature our chili dinner and our annual pie auction to benefit our scholarship program.
MCA Region 6 Vice-President Warren Love addressed the Dallas County Cattlemen.
Southwest Missouri Cattlemen’s Association The Southwest Missouri Cattlemen’s Association met on March 2 at the University of Missouri’s Southwest Research Center. Everyone always looks forward to this meeting as they know the Worthington Angus folks will provide Angus strip streaks grilled by the grill team. The sides were provided by Sum-R-Sweets from Miller. Seventy-five members and guests attended. Josh Worthington, Dadeville, spoke on the value of developing a plan for what you do on your farm day-byday. The plan should be predictable, measurable and repeatable. He stressed the best way to avoid guessing about bull’s performance was to use performance and genomic data. His farm uses both DNA results from Neogen and Method Genetics as they feel it improves reliability of data. Josh used examples from his upcoming sale catalog to illustrate how he practices what he preaches. In addition, he helps bull buying customers market their calves or bred heifers.
Please send County News items via email to: email@example.com • Andy Atzenweiler • Deadline for the May 2021 issue is April 15.
Cowboys at the Capitol on Wednesdays See Schedule on Page 28
During the business meeting, president Scynthia Schnake announced several grilling opportunities which will make up for lost revenue during the COVID shut down. She also took part in the Cowboys at the Capitol. Vice-president Nathan Isakson announced that 40 FFA and FACS students form Ash Grove High School would spend March 11 touring the area at Gleonda Angus, Miller; Joplin Regional Stockyards, Carthage and Harter House, Springfield. The tour serves as a capstone event that showcases the farm-to-fork fashion of beef production in the region. Eldon Cole, Univeristy of Missouri Extension field specialist in livestock mentioned several upcoming activities, such as bull breeding soundness clinics, steer feedout, Show-Me-Select heifer sales at Carthage and the tested bull sale at the Springfield Livestock Marketing Center.
Douglas / Wright County Cattlemen The Douglas/Wright County Cattlemen’s Association met on Tuesday, March 9, 2021, at 6:00 p.m. in Mountain Grove, Missouri, at Cattlemen’s Steakhouse. The group enjoyed a steak dinner with sides sponsored by Clarifly and VitaFerm. President Teresa Clifford welcomed the group. Ron Wright asked the blessing before the meal, and 39 members in attendance enjoyed fellowship during dinner. Following dinner, Gary Felger of Clarifly and John Jeffrey of VitaFerm gave short presentations about their products. A question and answer session followed with members who asked a question being rewarded with prizes. County Executive Director of FSA, Magan Henderson also joined the group and gave updates on Farm Storage Facility Loans that are available, as well as reminders to turn in any losses during the February snow/ice storm. The Douglas/Wright County Board met after dinner to finalize plans for the upcoming scholarship and essay contest that will take place.
The Douglas/Wright County Cattlemen will hold their next meeting on Tuesday, April 13, 2021, at 6:00 p.m. at Cattlemen’s Steakhouse in Mountain Grove, Missouri. The Hereford Association will sponsor the meeting, and Certified Hereford Beef will be served for dinner. Cattlemen in the area are always welcome and encouraged to attend.
Lafayette County The Lafayette County Cattlemen board of directors met January 13, 2021, at the Lafayette County Extension Office. President Don Schlesselman called the meeting to order. Secretary Kathy Harris presented the minutes from the summer meeting, and Darrell Neuner presented the Treasurer’s report on behalf of Sherie Neuner. Both were approved as presented. Old business included a recap of the summer meeting, MCA Steak Fry and the Summer Trip. The Grazing Field Day hosted by Gary and Barb Copenhaver was deemed a success. New business included a discussion of MCA convention by those who attended. The annual winter meeting was discussed and it was decided to postpone until May or June due to COVID restrictions. Officer positions were discussed, with board positions discussed for changes. It was decided to begin having the educational meetings again with the first to be held in March. Scholarship applications will be due April 1 with a committee appointed for review. The summer meeting was moved to the fall due to postponing the annual meeting, and this year we will plan to host a scholarship auction again. Updates will be forwarded to members in a newsletter. The schedule for Santa Fe Agri Leaders was shared by Jeff Bergman.
David Moore, Pasture and Range Specialist for MFA, discussed weed control, fertilizer and lime recommendations for successful pasture management.
With no other business, the meeting adjourned. March 9, the Pasture Management Meeting was held at the Mayview Community Building. Jon Roberts, MFA Livestock Specialist and David Moore, MFA Pasture and Range Management Specialist presented the program. Weed control, fertilizer and lime recommendations, grazing rotation and other management tools were discussed. Attendees received identification and spray guides for both brush and weed control, as well as a spot spray chart. Katie Neuner, Ag Business Specialist with the University of Missouri Extension, shared materials for the March 23 farm program meeting and the Grazing School to be held August 3-5.
Henry County Henry County Cattleman met March 18 at Dietz family buffet. Golden Valley Tractor presented the 32 members with information about New Holland Netwrap and Twine products available, the features and benefits of use. You can contact them with questions. Business meeting followed program. Next meeting April 15.
Jon Roberts, MFA Livestock Specialist, shared upcoming sale information.
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Taylor Bush, Bill Hammerbill, Chad & Chris Cayton, Randy Tribble at the Henry County meeting in March.
Barton County Cattlemen The Barton County Cattlemen met February 23 at the basement of Memorial Hall in Lamar Missouri. Prayer was led by Rex Frieden. The meal was sponsored by Seed and Farm of Lamar, Missouri, and was catered by Scott Nolting and family.
The state of Missouri is number three in cow/calf production.
After the meal, Dr. Scott Brown gave a presentation titled Cattle Market Outlook. Dr. Brown is from the University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources. He stated the demand for beef is strong. The 2021 price is projected to be between 2019 and 2020 levels. Of course, many things may alter the outcome of prices. Feed costs may increase due to China importing grain. The import of beef hasn’t offset the growth in U.S. production so far. Also, the price prediction depends on the recovery from the COVID-19 virus.
The Barton County Cattlemen met March 9, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. at the First Baptist Church in Lamar, Missouri. The meeting began with another delicious meal prepared by the Nolting family. The meal was sponsored by Superior Beef Genetics. Patrick Davis, Livestock Field Specialist introduced our speaker, Jordan Thomas, PhD, State Beef Reproduction Specialist. The title of the program was Low-Input Forage-Based Heifer Development Systems, in which the open heifers are still profitable as feeders.
Another factor in cattle prices is drought. The drought is much worse in the west. Numbers of cattle are reduced in the west due to the drought. Cattle numbers in Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas are up. This is potentially due to moving cattle from the west into these states. Missouri cattle numbers have decreased around 48,000 from 2020, and there seems to be no obvious reason for the decrease. The major growth in beef prices is Prime and Branded/ Choice. The Select price is steady.
The President, Brett Faubion closed the meeting with prayer.
Dr. Thomas stressed that most cattlemen prefer a 60-day calving period. When bringing heifers into the herd, a cattleman needs to look for heifers that breed early so they will have their calves at the beginning of the calving cycle. It’s normal for a heifer to take longer to rebreed. Therefore, it’s best to remove those heifers that take longer to first breed and those that take longer to rebreed, otherwise the calving season will stretch out over a much longer period, thus the cattleman will lose his 60-day window. If a cattleman realizes a heifer is taking too long to breed, he can sell it as a feeder and still get a higher return than if it is sold as a cow. The next meeting is to be announced. Watch the Facebook page for Barton County Cattlemen for updates. To become a member of the Barton County Cattlemen, go to: mocattle.org.
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Time to Implement Single Trait Selection Source: American Simmental Association - Chip Kemp Sometimes the obvious hides in plain sight. And it is obvious that our beloved bovine is often at the core of plain truths. Meat, of which we are confident beef is the most appealing version, has clearly impacted the development of the human brain, physical well-being, psychological health, and the economic stability of various societies. You don’t need to take my word for these things. Do your own homework. I’d encourage you to explore voices who operate in other arenas and may not be fully in philosophical alignment with us on every issue. But we can find commonality on this topic. Explore the works of anthropologist Dr. Leslie Aiello to consider the relationship between animal protein consumption and brain size and function. Or consider Dr. Drew Ramsey’s article “Do Happy, Healthy Brains Need Meat?”. Parts of this short essay will enrage you, but those can’t take away from the fact that he still states with certainty that people need to consume meat. Or check out the meat consumption vs. Gross Domestic Product chart at ourworldindata. org. All confirm what you and I know. Beef is overwhelmingly a positive for individuals and societies. Another example of the cow’s influence on modern society is in a word we hear all too often today — “vaccine”. The rise and fal of personalities, policies, parties, and people seem to hinge on this simple little word. Vaccine is derived from the Latin “vacca”or “vacci”. Meaning cow. Vaccination translates roughly to “pertaining to the cow”. All this derives from the work of Dr. Edward Jenner who, in the 18th century, used exposure to cowpox to provide immunity for smallpox.
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Or maybe we should discuss the most plain of truths. You and I need the cow to be profitable. To generate more revenue than she costs to acquire, raise, and maintain. Again, this is obvious and in plain sight. But is it really? Efficient growth performance is crucial to a profitable beef complex. Cost-effective feedlot gain is a major decider of a terminal animal’s profitability. I can recall, as an undergrad, having a certain professor drive home the reality that was quite evident in the beef business in the early 90s. Single trait selection was dangerous. He could back this up with facts, charts, and various glimpses of profit and loss within beef operations. He could drive this home with basic visual appraisal as we studied the physical implications of solely focusing on a leaner, larger animal. Or he could take us to a feedlot and listen to the “colorful” commentary by yard leadership and their local cattle buyer. This professor, you’ve probably heard of him — Dr. Jerry Lipsey, essentially had the full arsenal of tools to highlight to his students why this model of animal agriculture simply couldn’t sustain itself. The long and short of it – it was not profitable. You probably even remember ads from the day. I bet a printed pachyderm still resides in the memory bank of some. And yet . . . We all know the story. Carcass weights have increased aggressively for many years. Packers have incentivized this progression as they continue to move the heavy weight and yield grade discounts to allow for this trend to garner higher and higher grading percentages. Neither good nor bad. Just an observation of what is. As the genetics have been developed to allow for this shift, one would then assume with confidence we’ve also seen a significant uptick in weaning weights. But, ironically, that hasn’t come to pass. Dr. Dave Lalman’s work at Oklahoma State University has shown this time and again. We’ve seen essentially no measurable increase in industry-wide average weaning weights over the last three decades. Many have speculated this is a result of management and nutritional factors limiting on-ranch genetic expression. Many believe that weaning weight and yearling weight EPDs are amongst the most important selection criteria for a bull buyer and hence, amongst the most important factors when identifying sale-day value of a bull. For those commercial customers retaining ownership on their terminal calves, this would make perfect sense.
If you sell at weaning, is it as clear-cut? You need to generate a calf that has market appeal to the next owner. But cow size. But feed costs. Some might make this same line of argument regarding the modern-day emphasis on marbling. Though it should be said, it doesn’t appear that the antagonisms (or negative impacts) associated with heavy selection pressure for marbling are very dramatic. Maybe not even negative at all. Certainly not as obvious as the antagonisms associated with heavy pressure for growth traits. Regardless, many would state growth and marbling EPDs have been the most heavily selected for in recent years. And this clearly seems to be the case. So, have we devolved or reverted back to the 90s? Are we single trait selecting again? In some cases, likely so. As a commercial bull buyer what to do? Clearly, you need growth. And marbling. And cow longevity. And lower feed costs. The answer lies in plain sight. You need a tool that can appropriately balance the various revenue streams and expense centers within your business. If such a tool existed, it would allow you to appropriately allocate your selection pressure for terminal merit AND cow longevity. It would allow you to avoid sacrificing all growth, as some would suggest, to get the ultimately low input cow (and the resulting calf that offers very little to the industry at large). Again, such a tool would be less about maximizing one trait while hemorrhaging cash to cover up the deficiencies in another. And believe it or not, this tool would actually single trait select for the only metric worthy of single trait selection – PROFIT. These tools do exist. And fortunately, they are readily available. You know them as INDEXES. And they appear all the rage. And as a result, can be confusing if one isn’t careful. Every week it appears a new index gets crafted to appease another segment of the industry. It seems the more indexes there are the more folks can find a way to rationalize what they are already doing and avoid considering the tough questions that might require change. I like simple. The older I get the more I realize the importance of simple, thoughtful, well-crafted tools. They do what they are meant to do. No glamour, fancy powerpoints, or falling glitter. No fast talk or wordy definitions. They just work.
As I see it, two tools address almost every approach in the business. You either 1) buy your replacement females or 2) make your replacements. If you do the first, then you are buying maternal merit and hence you can focus your breeding decisions to bring as much terminal merit to the table as possible. In this case, you need the Terminal Index ($TI) which focuses on the genetics that is profitable in the feedyard and on the chain, while still accounting for the appropriate on-farm economically relevant traits. If you are making your replacements, you have a more sensitive dance. With AI and sexed semen, this conversation can get a bit more complex. But, the long and the short of it is you need an all-around, allpurpose genetic package. The All Purpose Index ($API) provides the clearer path to pursuing profit. One strategy that works for some is to use $API or $TI as an initial gate cut. Know how your potential bull targets fall in the index that best aligns with your management approach and operational style. Then, emphasize those particular EPDs and physical traits that are of great importance at this time within your herd. Keep profit at the forefront of your decision process and it will help you find the plain and obvious truth — that maybe there is a place for single trait selection when appropriately applied.
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Nobody Shares Like IGS Source: American Simmental Association Jackie Atkins, Ph.D Through pooling information, the International Genetic Solutions offers better selection tools to seedstock breeders and the beef industry. Early in life, we are taught to share. Share with our siblings, share with our classmates, share with our neighbors. The fact that we have to learn this behavior is telling — it’s not instinctive. It’s human nature to protect what is “ours” and become territorial to ensure we have what we need to survive and thrive; however, we have seen how we all can do better by working together, sharing resources, and maybe most importantly, sharing ideas. This philosophy of comradery and collaboration is at the heart of International Genetic Solutions (IGS).
sources. It is challenging to have a multi-breed genetic evaluation and to account for different breed effects and heterosis. But at the end of the day, we want to provide the BEST possible genetic predictions, not only to seedstock breeders but for anyone using EPDs to select their future genetics. The IGS model also sets aside the territorial toddler behaviors often seen in breed associations and societies. Instead of guarding our data, our
IGS aims to serve the beef industry by providing resources for genetic improvement using the best technology available and unprecedented collaboration. The IGS collaboration now has 20-million animals and nearly 300,000 genotypes from 20 different organizations. Not only is it the largest beef cattle database, but it also has a huge amount of connectivity among the different organizations. Nearly all of the progeny records in the IGS evaluation have siblings in a separate database and multiple sires have progeny in as many as 12 databases. If each of these databases was an island with an isolated evaluation, we could all breathe a little easier because the evaluation would be much simpler. But, it wouldn’t be better. It wouldn’t be as accurate. It wouldn’t give the best genetic predictions of the animals in the evaluation.
Instead, the IGS model has chosen the harder path. It is complex to have one evaluation with 20 different data
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material, our resources, to be used only to help our association improve, the IGS system opens the doors of communication among all the IGS partners to offer better resources to all the members and ultimately the beef industry. We all benefit from working together and sharing various perspectives from different breeds of cattle, different breed associations, and different countries but with the common goal of beef cattle genetic improvement. Beyond making the best possible genetic predictors, the staff from the various IGS partners learn from each other, share educational material, collaborate on different research projects, and work through various challenges most of us have faced independently but can get through better together. While the future is unknown to all of us, it is certain to improve by working together towards the common good.
Modern Seedstock Marketing Must be Better Source: American Simmental Association - Lane Giess
progeny inherit good management? No.
If we take a trip down memory lane, we can remember a day when marketing seedstock could be described as simple compared to today. We would mail a sale catalog with the date and time of our auction, inside would have general information about our breeding program and then we would list the lots of animals for sale. Each lot’s information would contain a couple of key pieces of information: birthdate, pedigree, adjusted weights, and ratios among other things. We used this information as the premise for describing genetic value among our offering. And at the time all of the separate sources of information were important and useful tools.
Then why do ratios, adjusted weights, and raw data still permeate most sale catalogs printed today?
You could even say before modern genetic evaluations, ratios and adjusted weights were the best tools available to describe genetic merit. And before those, pedigree knowledge and visual performance appraisal were the sole focus of every breeder. No doubt, our understanding of genetic merit has advanced since these times. As I page through various current sale catalogs, I have to ask the question, are they any more clear, or any easier to decipher than what’s been printed in years past? My answer would be no, and in fact, I might even argue they are more confusing now than ever before and not for the reason you might think. Modern sale catalogs still printing adjusted weights, ratios, and raw ultrasound scan results are full of contradicting pieces of information. Why? Because we know these observations describe more about the performance of the animal itself and less what a parent animal may pass on to its progeny.
Ratios, adjusted weights, and raw-scan data are indications of merit from an observed phenotype (BW, WW, Marbling, etc.). However, as all animal breeders know, an animal’s phenotype is influenced by multiple factors — including how they were managed. Can future
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As a seedstock breeder myself, I get it. The success of every seedstock operation is dependent on two things: 1) a sound and reliable breeding program designed to improve the profitability of our customers, and 2) the ability to market those animals to stay financially sound in our business. It’s the responsibility of every seedstock producer to maximize genetic progress and improve the economic profitability of beef production. But in a difficult market and volatile business environment, marketing our livestock is vital to our bottom line. Do we sometimes sacrifice the reality and merit of genetic tools in order to make a sale because of customer expectations? We choose to print outdated tools like ratios and weights for inherently selfish reasons and reasons only magnifying our inability to educate on true genetic tools like EPDs. They are more confusing, yes, but they are much more accurate and effective tools for making genetic improvements for a trait than anything else available. Science is not always understood, but in the case of EPDs, there is no debate among animal breeders and progressive producers. They work! The bottom line is, EPDs are better indicators for genetic merit than anything else available to seedstock breeders. Modern sale catalogs where we still print the outdated tools of ratios, actual weights and raw data are only adding to the difficulty of educating commercial cattlemen and are ultimately hurting your bottom line by introducing confusion and contradicting information. In a world of “the customer is always right”, some are going to demand seeing these pieces of information and for those customers, I’d suggest a separate location to print what they are looking for such as your website or as a supplement sheet rather than printed in a catalog.
Commodity Trades Welcome
This conversation is one many will disagree with, but as the beef industry is scrutinized and the market becomes more competitive, I think it is clear the direction seedstock breeders must take mandates a change in how animals are marketed and how we educate our consumer.
RAAA Implements New Updates Source: RAAA The Red Angus Feeder Calf Certification Program, commonly known as the “yellow tag” program combines three critical components into a value-added cattle marketing program: genetics, age and source verification. To date, more than 2.8 million head of Red Angus-influenced calves have worn the yellow tag to capitalize on market premiums. Recently, updates were made to the FCCP to make it more user-friendly for producers who are utilizing the program to increase their profit potential. 1) Program compliant EIDs from outside programs are now allowed to be incorporated into the Red Angus process-verified program. Customers must fill out an enrollment form and pay $1 per head. 2) In response to requests from both ranchers and feedlots, Red Angus has implemented a significant change regarding the ability to retag animals with a program-compliant tag after they have left the ranch of origin. Calves that lose either the dangle tag or EID after leaving the ranch and have a secondary identifier (management tag or match-pair set) can be retagged if the proper paperwork is submitted. This can be completed simply by contacting the tag programs department at RAAA. These updates provide producers with more flexibility in managing their herds in a dynamic marketplace while also taking advantage of the beneficial features of Red Angus value-added programs.
“The Red Angus FCCP has always strived to be a leader by providing added benefits to producers. Our goal during more-than-25-year history of our program is to increase the profit potential for cattlemen and women using Red Angus genetics. These valuable additions are just one more step in the profitable evolution of our Feeder Calf Certification Program,” said Harold Bertz, RAAA director of commercial marketing.
The FCCP was first established in 1994 and is the beef industry’s longest-running genetic, age and source verification value-added program. To enroll, producers must answer a few breeding and management questions such as verifying traceability to at least 50% Red Angus breed influence. To enroll in the program producers can contact Chessie Mitchell or Jeananne Drouhard at 940477-4593.
Missouri Red Angus Breeders
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On the Edge of
Common Sense with Baxter Black Illinois Cowboy “Where were you born?” the reporter asked one of my Colorado cowboy friends. “Iowa,” he answered. “Iowa!” she said. “Why did you move?” “Because it’s hard to be a cowboy in Iowa.” Well, it might be harder to be a cowboy in the Midwest but they’ve got a bunch of good ones anyway. No matter how much dependence modern cowmen place on manmade mechanical devices, there are times when nothin’ beats a good roper a’horseback. Illinois is an anthill of bovine activity. They have an abundance of cow calf operations and the state has ranked in the top ten in numbers of cattle on feed. So a “loose cow” is not an unusual occurrence. That’s when a good cowboy comes in handy. Dr. Matt has his veterinary clinic in one of the many small towns that dot the northwestern Illinois countryside. One afternoon he was processing a truckload of feeder steers in the back of his clinic.
Despite good help and good facilities, accidents can happen. A gate was left open and shornuf, one of the steers escaped. And, according to Rule #1 in the Guidebook of Loose Cattle, the steer headed straight for the center of town.
Matt leaped to his Toyota Batmobile and took up the chase as the girls in the office cheered him on and wished, not for the first time, they’d had a video camera. The steer had the advantage. He was able to cut through lawns, across lots filled with farm implements,
behind gas pumps and down sidewalks. He jaywalked with impunity. He galloped into the bank drive-through, raised his tail to the pie-eyed teller and proceeded to circle the bank building. Matt careened into the drive-through hot on the trail. By using the parking lot and surrounding sidewalks, he was able to keep the steer circling the bank through the manicured lawn and decorative shrubbery. Matt’s radio crackled, “Chet’s just pulled into the clinic, could you use some help?” The steer broke for the high school. “Send him on,” Matt yelled, “We’re headed for the football field!” The steer had slowed to a trot by the time Chet wheeled his pickup and trailer into the school parking lot. He unloaded his horse, grabbed his rope and mounted. Matt said it was beautiful to watch. When Chet rode through the goal posts the steer was on the twenty-yard line and pickin’ up speed. Chet’s horse was kickin’ up big divots and Chet was leaning forward like an outside linebacker. He sailed his loop and nailed the steer on the fifty-yard line. An amazing catch. The grandstands were empty. Nobody saw it but Matt, and he told me, with a faraway look in his eye, that to this day he can still hear the crowd.
“Our Missouri Celebration” August 12-22, 2021 Source: Missouri State Fair State Fair staff and superintendents are making plans to bring back a traditional Missouri State Fair, Aug. 12-22, in Sedalia. A compete line up of livestock shows and competitive exhibits, concerts, motorsports events, rodeo and bull riding, vendors and concessionaires, carnival midway, special events and more is in the planning stages right now. “We are looking forward with confidence and with hope that the traditional Fair you have come to know and love will take place this August,” said Fair Director Mark Wolfe. “We are planning an event that is steeped in tradition, along with bringing new and exciting things to experience during your visit.” The Fair has partnered with the Missouri Bicentennial Alliance and Commission to celebrate Missouri’s 200th birthday this year. Bicentennial exhibits, activities, entertainment and more will be featured across the
grounds throughout the 11 days of the Fair. A special Bicentennial page has been created on the Fair’s website. State Fair officials will continue to work with health officials to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic status and make modifications as necessary in preparation for the August Fair. “The safety of our guests and staff is of utmost importance to us,” said Wolfe. “As we move forward with planning for the Fair we will be reviewing our cleaning and sanitizing protocols, along with the addition of more hand sanitizing and washing stations across the fairgrounds.” Information will be added to the Fair’s website as it becomes available so be sure and check back often for the most up-to-date information. In addition, follow the Fair on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for fun Fair news, photos and information.
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For More Information Contact: Erin Larimore (660) 281-5518 or check out our website: https://extension2.missouri.edu/programs/show-meselect-replacement-heifer-program. Sales are sponsored by Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifers, Inc., with support from University of Missouri Extension, the Missouri Beef Cattle Improvement Association, the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources and Division of Animal Sciences; the MU College of Veterinary Medicine; the Missouri Department of Agriculture; and the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association. For catalogs and other information, please visit: https://extension2.missouri.edu/programs/show-meselect-replacement-heifer-program or contact the sale coordinator and/or livestock specialist.
Provided by the Missouri Department of Agriculture
Herefords in Demand Source: American Hereford Association Spring seedstock sales are well under way in many parts of the country as cattlemen and women purchase bulls meant to add value to their operations. An increasing number are choosing Hereford. “We’ve found that a lot of our customers that have more straightbred cattle, once they use Hereford genetics in a crossbreeding rotation, not only did they see higher weaning weights at the sale yard and their calves were more in demand, but more importantly, we feel that the female end of things has improved from a fertility standpoint, and maternal traits have improved a lot when they’ve actually used Hereford genetics in a crossbreeding rotation,” says Kyle Colyer, Idaho Hereford breeder. Colyer says the breed’s proven longevity and efficiency have more commercial cattle operations turning to Hereford. “One of the main reasons they come back to Hereford bulls, year in and year out, is the longevity and how long those bulls last, the structural correctness and the feet and legs, and how many years they can get out of a bull,” he adds. Hereford bulls used on Angus-based cows offer cattlemen advantages in profitability, herd size, retained female fertility and longevity, according to multi-year studies from the American Hereford Association (AHA) and leading commercial cattle ranches. Shane Bedwell, AHA chief operating officer and director of breed improvement, says heterosis study results released in recent years show a $51 per-cow, per-year
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advantage. (Read more at hereford.org/commercial/.) “With direct heterosis, by using Hereford genetics on that British cow herd, you’re going to get about a 15- to 20-pound increase,” Bedwell says, compared to straight commercial Angus cattle. One study, in which 600 commercial Angus females were AI-bred to 10 Hereford sires, documented improved feed efficiency and average daily gain (ADG) among black baldie calves — as well as fertility increases in females. “They kept the baldy females back, bred them and compared them over a three-year study, and that showed a 7% advantage in pregnancy rate, so we’re getting more females bred because of that heterosis advantage,” he says. The advantages also translate to the feedyard. “We’ve always had that great, rich tradition of Hereford cattle being docile and sound, and now we’ve coupled that together with calving ease bulls that can inject a lot of pounds into your calf crop. The conversion advantage of Hereford cattle is tremendous, and we’ve also seen the end product come with that as well.” With the breed’s genetic progress in recent years, Colyer recommends commercial ranchers consider upgrading their bull batteries when possible. “It’s important for producers to update their bull batteries to get the most current genetics that are available to them, especially the carcass genetics that the Hereford breed has been able to turn over and find most recently, especially more IMF and adding more marbling into these cattle,” he suggests. “We feel that if commercial producers were updating their bull batteries more often, that would be a good thing.” Find Hereford bull sale listings, sale books and field staff at Hereford.org.
Evaluate Your Calving Distribution this Spring Source: University of Missouri Extension - Craig Payne Record calf birthdates this calving season to track calving distribution. “Evaluating a calving distribution takes very little time but can provide valuable insight into reproductive performance and productivity of the herd,” says University of Missouri Extension veterinarian Craig Payne. Calving distribution is often expressed as the percentage of calves born at 21-day intervals, since 21 days is the average length of the estrous cycle in cattle. Payne tracks calving distributions as part of a threeyear project to help beef producers improve whole-herd MBCSept2014c.qxp_Layout 1 9/24/14 9:59 AM Page for 62 two reasons, he record-keeping. This is important says. First, dams of early-born calves have more time to recover before the next breeding season. They will likely be cycling at the beginning of the breeding season and have a better chance of becoming pregnant. Second, early-born calves have longer to gain weight. This gives the owner more pounds of calf to sell and bigger profits at marketing time. Payne says weaning weights collected from a northwestern Missouri operation in the fall of 2020 show that steer calves born in the first 21 days of the calving season averaged 47 pounds heavier at weaning than calves born during days 22-42 (537 pounds vs. 490 pounds).
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While the number of calves in this group is relatively small (47 steers born in the first 21 days and 12 born during days 22-42), Payne says other studies report similar weight differences. Begin tracking calving distribution by establishing the date of the initial counting period. One option is to start the first period 283 days from bull turn-in or AI. If this information is not available, begin the first 21-day period when the third calf is born. Both methods work, says Payne, but use the same method to be consistent. Once you have the start date, count the number of calves born in the first 21 days of the calving season and divide that number by the total number of calves born, says Payne. Repeat the process for days 22-42, days 43– 63 and after day 63. Count all full-term calves born, dead or alive. Also include calves born before the beginning of the first 21-day period. Finally, evaluate the calving distribution of first-calf heifers (2-year-old cows) separately from the mature herd. Their breeding season is often earlier or managed differently. Once you know your herd’s distribution, compare it to the industry standard. Benchmarks for the first, second and third 21-day periods are 65%, 23% and 7%, respectively. The remaining 5% of calves are born later than 63 days.
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The following is the calving distribution of 142 calves from a 2020 spring calving herd in northwestern Missouri (also see table 1 below): Day of calving season and percentage: days 1-21, 66%; days 22-42, 28%; days 43-63, 6%; >63, none. Based on the calving distribution, this herd performed better than the industry standard. To achieve the targets, all cows must cycle at the beginning of the breeding season and bulls must be fertile. “If your distribution is unfavorable, meaning a higher percentage of calves are born later in the calving season, it could indicate one or more problems and will require more investigation,” says Payne. Factors to consider are nutrition, bull power or fertility, disease or conditions that cause early embryonic loss or infertility, or a mismatch between herd genetics and environment. Also, look at the calving distribution by age category, pasture and other groupings to see if a specific group is responsible for differences. The following distributions are from two groups of cows owned and managed by the same beef producer (also see table 2 below): Day of calving and percentage for the 2019 fall calving group (44 calves): 1-22, 45%; 22-42, 34%; 43-63, 16%; >63, 5%.
For more information on the record-keeping project, contact Payne at 573-882-8236, livestock specialist Shawn Deering at 660-726-5610, livestock specialist Jim Humphrey at 816-324-3147 or state beef nutritionist Eric Bailey at 573-884-7873.
Day of calving and percentage for the 2020 spring calving group (66 calves): 1-21, 74%; 22-42, 24%; 43-63, 2%; >63, none.
For more than 100 years, University of Missouri Extension has extended university-based knowledge beyond the campus into all counties of the state. In doing so, extension has strengthened families, businesses and communities.
Table 1 Day of calving season
2020 spring (142 calves)
Notice the 2019 fall calving herd had an unfavorable distribution while the 2020 spring calving herd exceeded the benchmark. According to the producer, this difference can be explained by management intensity. The spring herd is intensely managed for reproductive success. The fall herd, however, is a mixture of purchased cows of unknown origin, late fall calving cows bought from another producer and cows carried over from the spring herd.
Table 2 Day of calving season
2019 fall (44 calves)
2020 spring (66 calves)
MU Extension Guide Lists First, Last Frost Dates by Region Source: Pat Guinan - Associate Extension Professor of Climatology COLUMBIA, Mo. – Spring and fall can be anxious times for gardeners. At the beginning of the growing season, you want to start the garden as early as possible, and at the end you hope for a few extra harvest days. An online resource from University of Missouri Extension makes it easier to predict first and last frost dates for your specific region. The Missouri Frost/Freeze Probabilities Guide is available at ipm.missouri.edu/ frostfreezeguide.
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“These data can be used for making an informed decision when it comes to planting and assessing climatological risk associated with light, moderate and hard freezes in your region during the spring and fall,” said Pat Guinan, climatologist for MU Extension. The website provides frost/freeze probabilities, tables, maps and dates using data from the National Center for Environmental Information, based on information collected from 1981 through 2010. Features of the site include median date point maps, which provide the last spring and first fall median frost/freeze dates for various temperature thresholds, Guinan said. There are median date contour maps and extreme date point maps. These maps are also available as printable high-resolution PDFs. The site also has county-level frost/freeze probability tables based on weather station data. The guide provides a general representation of frost/ freeze probabilities in your region, Guinan says, but users also need to consider local factors that may affect temperature, such as terrain, elevation and urbanization. “Local anomalies due to microclimates are definitely something to consider when using the guide.” There’s about 300 miles between the northern and southern boundaries of Missouri, and the state’s growing season can typically run from April to October. Having a guide that separates data by county and regions can help you make informed decisions about when to plant and harvest plants that are sensitive to the cold, Guinan said. The frost/freeze guide is also available as a printable PDF at extension.missouri.edu/ipm1033.
Pat Guinan’s list of weather resources is at agebb. missouri.edu/weather/wealinks.htm.
https://extension. missouri.edu/ media/wysiwyg/ Extensiondata/ NewsAdmin/Photos/ graphics/spring36F. jpg Map from MU Extension’s Frost/ Freeze Probabilities Guide.
The Business Breed Surpasses 20 Million Registrations Source: by Whitney Whitaker, Angus Communications After 138 years, the American Angus Association reaches 20 million registrations. When the American Angus Association® was established in 1883, the founding fathers could have never imagined the power and impact registered Angus cattle would make by the year 2021. In the past 138 years, the Association has seen a lot of changes, but the constant that has remained the same has been the Association’s passionate members who are dedicated to improving the beef industry across the world. The headquarters of the world’s largest beef breed association in Saint Joseph, Missouri, surpassed 20 million registrations on March 17, 2021. Growing the breed to more than 20 million registered Angus cattle is no small feat. During that time, the Association averaged 144,927 registrations per year, topping the charts at 406,310 registrations in 1968.
“This is truly an exciting day for the American Angus Association and our members as we cross the 20 million milestone for registrations,” said Jerry Cassady, Association director of member services. “To think that it took 96 years for our Association to reach the 10 million mark back in 1979, we’ve added another 10 million registered Angus into our registry in less than half the time. This is a credit to the hard work and efforts of our members.” A registration certificate is more than a piece of paper. The registration paper creates demand and extra value in cattle that are powered by the qualities that the Angus breed brings to the table. Registration numbers signify the data behind the animal, tracing its lineage and potential to change the direction of cowherds. The registration paper allows members to join the Angus family. Using registered Angus bulls also unlocks additional premiums for every segment of the beef industry. If one registration paper can provide that much value - consider the impact of 20 million registrations. “It’s pretty amazing to consider the amount of work and dedication that has been invested by our members over the years to get to this point,” said Mark McCully, Association chief executive officer. “Breeders of registered Angus cattle have stayed committed to the value of pedigreed seedstock and enjoy tremendous demand and market share today because of it.”
To join the family and learn more about registered Angus cattle, visit Angus.org or call the Association office in St. Joseph, Missouri at 816.383.5100.
Buy Better Source: Black Ink - Miranda Reiman, Director, CAB Producer Communications People who have been at it for decades, the second or third generation in this idea that carcass quality matters, with a well-tested recipe for success. These are the farmers and ranchers who often appear in my articles. They are good examples other people can learn from, the innovators and leaders by example. Many of them saw the movement coming before it really took off and helped make it happen. But these early adopters aren’t the only people in the cattle business. I’ve visited with cattlemen across the country at various points of their journey. In Iowa, I enjoyed a visit with the first farmer in his family to take as much interest in the cows as they had in their corn. There was the middle-aged South Dakota man who left a career in another state to start over as a rancher. A producer in Montana talked about getting to make the bull selection decisions, nearing 70 and just taking over that chore from his dad.
These are the people I had in mind as I lobbed out a new story idea: What about an informational piece for those who have decided they want to improve the carcass quality of their cattle, but find the idea somewhat daunting? I brought the idea to my team. “The working title could be, something like, ‘How to get started in aiming for quality.’” A teammate quickly responded, somewhat in jest but also with bedrock truth. “That’d be pretty short: buy better bulls.” Of course, it’s broader and more nuanced than that, because genetic improvement has so many ways and means. Natural service or artificial insemination? The latter might get you there quicker, but it takes labor and facilities. Maybe it’s a combination of both, applied strategically to different groups of females. There are variables like how much better the sire needs to be, and for what traits. That all depends on how much you know about your herd now and any benchmarks you’ve already established. Land and feed resources, final marketing method and even the level of record keeping make a difference. Management affects that final measure, too, everything from health and handling to nutrition. With no shortage of factors to scrutinize, pretty soon the simple article could become a book or a semester-long class. But at the core it really comes back to that simple beginning. You can’t improve something if you don’t have a starting benchmark and then make use of better ingredients and ideas. At the foundation of your herd is a decision you probably only make a couple of times a year. Make sure it’s always one that moves toward your target.
If you want better cattle, buy better bulls.
Angus Foundation Scholarship Applications Open Now Source: Karen Hiltbrand, Angus Communications Angus Foundation scholarship applications due May 1. Scholarship applications are now available for college students involved with the Angus breed. This past year, the Angus Foundation awarded more than $312,000 in scholarships in 2021 alone. The Angus Foundation offers scholarships to undergraduate, graduate and trade school students each year to help Angus youth achieve their educational goals and offset the continually rising costs of tuition at higher education institutions. “Here at the Angus Foundation, we are committed to supporting our young people and assisting in ensuring they are able to pursue their educational goals,” said Thomas Marten, Angus Foundation executive director. “Thanks to the generous donors of the Angus Foundation, we are able to provide assistance to students as they carry the burden of the cost of higher education.” Over the years, countless past junior Angus members have benefitted from the financial support of Angus Foundation-funded scholarships. Angus Foundation success stories have become more and more prevalent year after year. Last year was a true testament to the Angus family as past Angus Foundation recipients made an impact on society, both within and outside of the agricultural industry. Past recipients and Angus Foundation donors made a difference serving on the frontlines during the COVID-19 pandemic in “From the Frontlines.” “The Angus Foundation’s core mission of youth, education and research is so important to developing young people to come back into our breed, into our community and into our industry as a whole,” said Jara Settles, vice president of livestock mitigation at the Livestock Marketing Association and past scholarship
recipient. “If we don’t invest in these young people and welcome them back in and give them truly viable opportunities in terms of education and professional growth, they might leave us.” To see the stories and hear the success of past recipients, visit angus.org/foundation. Undergraduate and Graduate Scholarships Applicants for undergraduate and graduate scholarships must have, at one time, been a member of the National Junior Angus Associationâ (NJAA) and currently be an active junior, regular or life member of the American Angus Associationâ. The following documents are required to be considered for a 2021 undergraduate or graduate scholarship: the 2021 scholarship application; three letters of recommendation; a copy of current high school/college/university transcript; and the applicant’s Association member code. Undergraduate and graduate scholarship applications, eligibility requirements and application guidelines can be found online at angus.org/foundation. Applications are due May 1, 2021. Commercial Cattlemen Scholarship The Angus Foundation also will award three $1,500 scholarships to undergraduate students who use Angus genetics in a commercial cattle operation’s breeding program or whose parents use Angus genetics. Emphasis will be placed on applicants’ knowledge of the cattle industry and perspective of the Angus breed. The applicants or their parents/guardians must have transferred or been transferred an Angus registration paper in the last 36 months (on or after May 1, 2018) and must be considered commercial and not seedstock in their operation. The scholarship applies to any field of study. A separate application, from the general Foundation application, is required for the Commercial Cattlemen Scholarship. The application can be found on the Angus Foundation website.
Applicants having received or applied for Angus Foundation undergraduate scholarships, using our standard general application this year or in past years, will not be considered for this scholarship.
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Steve Sellers 620-257-2611
Kevin Dwyer 620-680-0404
Certified Angus Beef®/National Junior Angus Association Scholarship Since 1990, the NJAA has teamed up with Certified Angus Beef® (CAB) LLC to help Angus youth pursue their higher education goals. The selected applicant will receive a $1,500 scholarship. A separate application from the Angus Foundation scholarship application is required for the CAB/NJAA scholarship. Requirements are similar to the general Angus Foundation scholarship; more details can be found on the application. The application is available on the Angus Foundation website. New– The John R. Mrotek Family Technical Education Scholarship Through the immense generosity and creativity of John R. Mrotek, Angus junior members pursuing a trade can secure scholarship funds to support their vocational training. Established in 2020 with a gift of transferred stock, John Mrotek created the John R. Mrotek Family Technical Education Scholarship Endowment Fund with the Angus Foundation to provide academic scholarships for Angus youth pursuing vocational training in career and technical programs, ranging from farm/ranch management and precision agriculture to welding, diesel mechanics and veterinary technicians. Recipients of the John R. Mrotek Family Technical Education Scholarship should be enrolled or enrolling in a trade school and preference will be given to applicants from Virginia. Students can apply using the general undergraduate scholarship application found on the Angus Foundation website.
Cowboys at the Capitol on Wednesdays See Schedule on Page 28
“We are so excited to have opportunities like the John R. Mrotek Family Technical Education Scholarship to serve every junior, no matter what their goals are,” Marten said. “This is the first Angus Foundation scholarship fund to specifically target trade schools and support vocational careers and students seeking a terminal, technical degree or certificate program.” Since 1998, the Angus Foundation has awarded more than $3.5 million in undergraduate and graduate scholarships. For more information about the Angus Foundation or scholarships, visit angus.org/foundation.
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Beef Artificial Insemination School is April 9-10 Source: University of Missouri Extension COLUMBIA, Mo. – University of Missouri Extension in Howard County, in partnership with Select Sires, will host a beef cattle artificial insemination school April 9-10. The school will be at the MU Beef Research and Teaching Farm, 5151 Old Millers Road, Columbia. Registration deadline is April 2. The school introduces participants to the art and science of artificial insemination through presentations, videos
and hands-on experiences, says MU Extension livestock specialist Heather Conrow. Topics include estrous cycle, semen handling and synchronization protocols. Demonstrations include palpation, identification of the reproductive tract, heat detection and insemination techniques. For more information, contact Conrow at 660-2482272 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To register, contact MU Extension in Boone County at 573-445-9792 or download a printable flyer and registration form at tinyurl.com/46sy4mdz.
Fecal Egg Count and FAMACHA Training Set for April 17 Source: University of Missouri Extension FAYETTE, Mo. – University of Missouri Extension in Howard County, in collaboration with Lincoln University Cooperative Extension, will hold a FAMACHA training workshop 8 a.m.-noon Saturday, April 17. This hands-on workshop will be held at the Howard County Fairgrounds in Fayette, says MU Extension livestock specialist Heather Conrow. Advance registration is required and enrollment is limited to 30. An additional session may be offered if more than 30 people register. The workshop will be canceled if fewer than seven registrations are received by April 12.
FAMACHA (Faffa Malan Chart) scoring identifies anemia in small ruminants and helps producers make
informed deworming decisions. The five-color scoring chart uses a sheep or goat’s bottom eyelid color to indicate the level of anemia. The workshop will also include training on fecal egg counts. This test gives an approximate parasite load and helps determine if the current dewormer remains effective. 4-H youths will receive four sheep/goat project hours for attending this hands-on workshop, said Conrow. For more information or to register, contact Conrow by April 12 at 660-248-2272 or email@example.com. Visit MU Extension in Howard County’s Facebook page at facebook.com/HoCoExtension for information on other programs.
SALE REPORTS Gardiner Angus Ranch’s “Early Bird” Bull Sale 1.25.21 • Ashland, KS Lots Gross Average 51 20-Mo.-Old-Bulls $334,500 $6,559 219 17-Mo.-Old-Bulls $1,252,500 $5,719 270 Total Reg. Bulls $1,587,000 $5,878 135 Bred Com. Heifers $274,050 $2,030 Jauer Dependable Genetics Sale 1.30.21 • Hinton, IA 233 head $631,630 35 spring bred cows 12 fall bred cows 34 two year old bulls 152 commercial heifers
$2,754 $2,825 $5,899 $1,979
J&N Black Hereford Spring Production Sale 2.13.21 • Leavenworth, KS 75 Black Hereford Bulls $4,897 23 Black Hereford Cows $4,120 Express Ranches Spring Bull Sale 3.5.21 • Yukon, Ok 160 Older Bulls $966,500.00 272 Yrlg.Bulls $1,933,000.00 432 Total Reg. Bulls $2,899,500.00 432 Sale Total $2,899,500.00 Mead Farms Spring Sale 3.6.21 • Versailles, Mo 192 Total Reg. Bulls $745,950.00
$6,040.00 $7,106.00 $6,711.00 $6,711.00
Wall Street Cattle Co. Angus Bull & Female Sale 3.12.21 • Lebanon, Mo 79 Total Reg. Bulls $282,650.00 $3,577.00 54 Total Reg. Females $98,075.00 $1,816.00 133 Reported Sale Total $380,725.00 $2,862.00
$5,044.00 $4,067.00 $4,516.00
Wright Charolais Bull Sale 3.13.21• Kearney, Mo 65 Fall Yearling Bulls 68 Spring Yearling Bulls 133 Lots
$6,785 $5,388 $6,068
Express Honor Roll Sale 3.13.21 • Yukon, Ok 98 Total Reg. Females $1,226,450.00
$2,991.00 $1,941.00 $2,343.00
Hinkle’s Prime Cut Angus Sale 3.15.21 • Nevada, Mo 83 Total Reg. Bulls $670,750.00 65 Total Reg. Females $531,900.00 148 Reported Sale Total $1,202,650.00
$8,081.00 $8,183.00 $8,126.00
Valley Oaks Spring Sale 3.17.21 • Lone Jack, Mo 52 Total Reg. Bulls $218,000.00 22 Total Reg. Females $48,550.00 74 Reported Sale Total $266,550.00
$4,192.00 $2,206.00 $3,602.00
Henke Farms Bull & Female Sale 3.18.21 • Salisbury, Mo 66 Total Reg. Bulls $301,350.00 21 Total Reg. Females $103,300.00 87 Reported Sale Total $404,650.00
$4,565.00 $4,919.00 $4,651.00
Benoit Angus Ranch Sale 3.18.21 • Esbon, Ks 161 Total Reg. Bulls $934,000.00
Falling Timber Farm Sale 3.20.21 • Marthasville, Mo 31.00 Bulls $125,200.00 34.00 Females $101,900.00 65.00 Total $227,100.00 5.00 Comm. Females $ 16,350.00
$4,039.00 $2,997.00 $3,494.00 $3,270.00
Aschermann Charolais Bull Sale 3.20.21 • Carthage, Mo 44 Charolais Bulls Total Charolais Bull Gross $211,550.00 High-Selling Lot:
Brinkley Angus Ranch Sale 3.20.21 • Green City, Mo 88 Total Reg. Bulls $792,000.00 22 Commercial Pairs $59,800.00
April Valley Farm Angus Sale 3.21.21 • St. Joseph, Mo 65 Total Reg. Bulls $276,200.00 38 Total Reg. Females $100,300.00 103 Reported Sale Total $376,500.00
$4,249.00 $2,639.00 $3,655.00
Sampson Annual Bull Sale 3.13.21 • Kirksville, Mo 17 Older Bulls $85,750.00 20 Yrlg. Bulls $81,350.00 37 Reported Sale Total $167,100.00
Heart Of The Ozarks Angus Sale 3.13.21 • West Plains, Mo 31 Total Reg. Bulls $92,750.00 50 Total Reg. Females $97,050.00 81 Reported Sale Total $189,800.00
April 1 April 2 April 3 April 3 April 3 April 3 April 3 April 3 April 3 April 5 April 9
Hunter Angus Sale, Fair Grove, MO Meyer Cattle Co. Sale Curryville, MO Ade Polled Hereford Sale, Amsterdam, MO Four State Angus Association Sale Springfield, MO Show-Me Classic Bull & Female Sale, Windsor, MO B/F Cattle Co. Sale, Butler, MO Ridder Farms Bull & Female Sale, Hermann, MO Magness Western Slope Bull Sale, Loma, CO Gardiner Angus Ranch Sale, Ashland, KS Brockmere Farms Inc. Sale, New Cambria, MO Howard County Angus Association Sale, Fayette, MO
April 10 April 10 April 10 April 13 April 17 April 17 April 17 April 22 April 23 April 24
Central Missouri Polled Hereford Sale, Cuba, MO Renaissance Sale, Strafford, MO Fink Beef Genetics Sale, Randolph, KS Sydenstricker Genetic Influence Sale New Cambria, MO McBee Spring Selection Day Sale, Fayette, MO East CentralMissouri Angus Association Sale, Cuba, MO New Day Genetics Sale, Salem, MO Valley View Angus Farm Online Female Sale, Republic, MO NextGen Cattle Co. Spring Event Sale, Paxico, KS Missouri Red Angus Sale, Springfield, MO
April 24 May 7 May 8 May 10 May 14 May 15 May 21 May 21 May 22 May 22 May 22 June 5
Wild Indian Acres Charolais Bull Sale, DeSoto, MO Southeast Missouri Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sale, Fruitland, MO Mead Angus Farms Spring Female Sale, Versailles, MO Gardiner Angus Ranch “Meating Demand” Bull Sale, Ashland, KS Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sale, Farmington, MO Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sale, Kingsville, MO Southwest Missouri Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sale, JRS, Carthage, MO Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sale, Vienna, MO Soaring Eagle Production Sale, Springfield, MO Great American Pie Annual Limousin Sale, Lebanon, MO Spur Ranch “Back To Grass” Sale, Vinita, OK Northeast Missouri Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sale, Palmyra, MO
Joplin Regional Stockyards Value-Added Sale, Carthage, MO
MBC Classified The MBC Classified column appears monthly. Classified advertising is only 50¢ a word. Send your check with your ad to Missouri Beef Cattleman, 2306 Bluff Creek Drive, #100, Columbia, Mo 65201. Deadline 15th of month before an issue.
“REESE” DISC MOWERS, CADDY V-RAKES, “REESE” TUBE-LINE BALE WRAPPER, AITCHISON DRILLS, SELF-UNLOADING HAY TRAILERS, HEAVY DUTY BALE AND MINERAL FEEDERS, FEED BUNKS, BALE SPIKES, CONTINUOUS FENCING, COMPLETE CORRAL SYSTEMS, INSTALLATION AVAILABLE: Tigerco Distributing Co. 660-645-2212, 800-432-4020 or www.tigercoinc.com. BLACK SIMMENTAL BULLS SINCE 1993: Calving Ease, Attractive, Athletic, Sound Footed and Docile. We Deliver. Mike Williams, Higginsville, 816-797-5450
APRIL 2021 97
ADM Minerals...........................................................49 AgPower John Deere...................................................33 American Angus Association......................................78 American Foods Group..............................................15 American Simmental Association..............................55 BioZyme Ad................................................................73 Bradley Cattle ............................................................53 Brickhouse Farms Red Angus....................................53 Buffalo Livestock Market............................................70 Callaway Livestock Center Inc...................................44 Central Missouri Sales Co..........................................68 Classified.....................................................................97 Clearwater Farm.........................................................39 Coon Angus Ranch....................................................39 Cotton Seed ...............................................................57 Double A Land & Cattle.............................................53 Elanco - Cydectin.......................................................19 Elanco - Ear Tags.......................................................31 Ellis Cattle Company Red Angus...............................53 Ertell Cattle Company................................................16 F&T Livestock Market................................................ 17 Feed Train.....................................................................7 Fink Beef Genetics Sale..............................................75 Frank and Hazelrigg Angus.......................................39 Galaxy Beef LLC........................................................39 Gardiner Sale..............................................................77 Gerloff Farms..............................................................39 Green’s Welding & Sales.............................................18 Hinkle’s Prime Cut Angus..........................................39 HydraBed....................................................................25 J.D. Bellis Family Herefords.......................................72 Jim’s Motors................................................................50 Joplin Regional Stockyards.......................................100 Kingsville Livestock Auction......................................38 KK Farms Red Angus................................................53 Kranjec Valley Angus Farma.....................................39 Lacy’s Red Angus.......................................................53 Maple Oaks Red Angus..............................................53 Maplewood Acres Farm..............................................53 Marshall & Fenner Farms...........................................39 MC Livestock Red Angus...........................................53 MCA - Cowboys at the Capitol..................................28 MCA - MCLC............................................................87 MCA - Member Benefits ...........................................89 MCA - Membership Form..........................................93 MCA - Membership Signs..........................................94 MCA - MJCA Point Program/Jr Show/Form....... 84-86 MCA - Native Grassland Pasture Walk......................83 MCA - Presidents Council..........................................91 MCA - Show-Me-Select Sale Credit..........................90
MCA - Steak Fry................................................... 29-30 MCA - Top Hand.......................................................88 McBee Cattle Co. Sale................................................43 MCF - CLS - Altosid .................................................75 McPherson Concrete Products...................................97 Mead Cattle Co..........................................................61 Mead Farms................................................................39 Mead Farms Female Sale............................................55 Merck Animal Health.................................................99 Meyer Manufacturing................................................59 MFA ...........................................................................67 Missouri Angus Association........................................39 Missouri Angus Breeders............................................39 Missouri Beef Cattleman magazine...........................74 Missouri Beef Industry Council..................................21 Missouri Forage & Grassland Council.......................16 Missouri Limousin Breeders Association............. 34-35 Missouri Red Angus Association................................53 Missouri Red Angus Association Sale........................52 Missouri Red Angus Breeders....................................53 MultiMin USA............................................................37 New Day Genetics Sale......................................... 46-47 Ozark Hills Genetics...................................................53 P.H. White...................................................................76 Rogers Cattle Co. and Lile Farms Red Angus...........53 S&N Partners - TubeLine...........................................23 Salt Fork - Strobel.......................................................45 Sampson Cattle Co.....................................................39 Sellers Feedlot.............................................................80 Shoal Creek Land & Cattle........................................53 Show-Me-Select Replacement Heifer Sales................64 South Central Regional Stockyards...........................48 Southeast Missouri Show-Me-Select Sale..................82 Spur Ranch Sale ........................................................79 Square B Ranch/Quality Beef....................................39 Superior Steel Sales.....................................................26 Sydenstricker Genetics................................................39 Sydenstricker Genetics Influence Sale........................13 Touchstone Energy.....................................................63 Valley Oaks Angus......................................................39 VitaLix........................................................................69 Weiker Angus Ranch..................................................39 Westway Feeds..............................................................9 Wheeler Auctions & Real Estate.................................42 Wheeler Livestock Market..........................................81 Wild Indian Acres Charolais Sale..............................65 Mike Williams............................................................42 Windrush Farm Red Angus........................................53 Y-Tex..........................................................................2-3