Wagyu World - March / April 2016

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September/October 2015 March/April 2016

Wagyu World | March/April 2016


Bay Mak Mana 129 (FB16091) Sire: YCB ITO Makoto 5626 (FB11765)

Daughters will Sell! These calves could put you in the winners circle at any show!

Bay Misao- ET (FB17485) Sire: Hirashigetayasu J2351 (FB670)

Selling a Z278 heifer!

Bay Shige Miki 118 (FB16081)

Sire: World K’s Shigeshigetani (FB2907)

Selling the first 20 Female Sexed units of semen on her Takamichi Doi FB7970 son.

Bay Sanj Kumiko 147-ET (FB17489) Sire: World K’s Sanjirou (FB2501)

A daughter by Red Emperor sells! Red Carrier and could be the highest type and tallest daughter of Red Emperor.

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Randall O.Ratliff 615.330.2735 Randy@RRmktg.com Marketing Wagyu World | March/April 2016


Wagyu Consignment Opportunity Selling Everything Wagyu

June 11, 2016 Missouri State University • Darr Agricultural Center

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Join us Friday evening, June 10th 6 PM for good eats, drinks & industry speakers. Questions, call or text 916.837.1432 Sale Broadcasted on:

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Wagyu World | March/April 2016

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THIS ISSUE March / April 2016 Volume 2, Number 3




COVER>> Title: Show Mode Seth Brown Location: 2016 NWSS Denver, CO

10 Market Matters Making The Grade

The USDA has had a meat grading system for decades, however this system’s highest grade doesn’t even come close to touching the extraordinary carcass quality produced by Wagyu genetics as compared to systems found in both Australia & Japan. We discuss this issue and its affects on marketing. >> By Heather Smith-Thomas

16 16 Market Matters Localis We visit with Chef Chris Barnum of Localis where they feature Wagyu beef on their menu. Their moto is in the name as they locally source all of their ingredients, including the Wagyu! >> By Heather Smith-Thomas

18 29 OUT & ABOUT The 2016 National Western & Houston Stock show results as well as coverage from Heart Brand Beef’s field day. 6

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

32 RANCH REACH Emerson Cattle Company

The history of this Wagyu program based in Indiana and their future with Wagyu. They are an amzing team of people that come together to make great things happen. >> By Heather Smith-Thomas




It’s always hard to decide to either feed out your own stock or send them to a custom feedlot. Joe Morris discusses this issue and talks about his feeding program and feeding Wagyu cattle in particular. >> By Heather Smith-Thomas


Anderson’s Fine Jewelry brings us a beautiful collection to fit almost every look. From rings, to bracelets and cuffs, to neckalaces; every piece is unique and a perfect accessory to compliment your next outfit!



Steve Smith is working with both the AWA and Wagyu breeders to study lipid composition in fats and comparing Wagyu against other proteins, This is the good fat and a good read to learn more about what makes Wagyu good for the body as well as the taste buds. >> By Jeri Tulley


Wagyu World | March/April 2016


Editor’s Letter | WW

March /April 2016


ow, since the last issue there have been many Wagyu events; shows, a field day and an online auction. This issue covers them all; this might be our largest Out & About issue that we’ve had thus far! This says a lot about the breed and its aggressive growth and the positive energy to move forward that is expressed by every Wagyu breeder, marketer and enthusiast. This issue doesn’t just contain the informative Out & About; this March/April issue has everyone’s favorite departments. We start with a Market Matters piece that discusses USDA beef grades and where Wagyu fits into it. From there we stay on the marketing side of things and visit with an award winning California based restaurant that has been featuring locally raised Wagyu and their patrons love it. Our Ranch Reach takes us to Indiana where we learn more about the Emerson Cattle Company program; good cattle and even better folks. The Health & Husbandry department focuses on finishing Wagyu cattle with Morris Stock Farms from Texas and also visit with Steve Smith to learn about his study comparing the differences in lipid composition as well as learn a little bit about the man behind the science. Let’s not forget Living Prime where I guarantee the ladies will fall in love with an amazing new accessory to add to any wardrobe. As we enter the spring season I’ve got a very full plate; we have the Bar R Cattle Company production sale in May and in June the Passion for Prime consignment sale in Missouri. I hope to see many of you at these events. Just around the corner is the Texas Wagyu Association’s annual event; I’m making the trip and am looking forward to seeing many familiar faces and hope to meet many new ones as well. With all of these sales, moving to a new ranch and keeping up with the tasks that everyday life brings, summer will be here before I know it. I have to give a shout out to my family and my fellow staff; they have been troopers and all of this wouldn’t be possible without them. I hope everyone has a wonderful and productive spring, see many of you soon!

Publisher’s Post | WW ou’ve heard the saying about the “best laid plans”; well it certainly applied to our intended trip to the Houston Stock Show, we had everything in place to make the trip and within hours those plans disintegrated in a cloud of dust. There are moments when you know that you’ve got too many irons in the fire. This spring has been a busy one and not a lot of relief in sight, so it really does help that you get to love what you do each and every day. While we missed getting to see everyone in Houston, we really enjoyed going through the photos and seeing the winners and the candid’s taken during the Wagyu show, it truly looked like a grand time was had by everyone in attendance. I’m not sure where the rest of the country is in terms of spring being in the air, but here in California things are so green that it hurts the eyes and the blossoms are magnificent. Sitting at my desk and staying at my computer takes a lot of willpower; spring fever is a real thing. Next month we will be seeing old friends and making new ones when we attend “The Steaks are High” sale in Salado, Texas. This is truly a busy spring for the Wagyu breed; it’s amazing to see the growth that has taken place in such a short span of time. I’ve said it before; the quantity of calls that come into this office from folks wanting to know more about the breed and get started with a program are numerous on a weekly basis. This is an exhilarating time to be a part of the Wagyu advancement.


Sherry Danekas - Publisher 8

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Contributors | WW



Rancher/ Writer


At my house, Spring brings... mud and snowstorms, a few days of nice weather that gives hope for a real spring, and baby calves frolicking. The Easter Bunny... takes many shapes, but finds a way to hide Easter eggs for the grandkids. My ultimate Easter basket would contain... assurance of good weather and good health for all our baby calves.

P: (916) 685-8980 F: (916) 685-8996 W: www.buywagyu.net O: 8900 Grantline Road Elk Grove, CA 95624 M: P.O. Box 410 Wilton, CA 95693

At my house, Spring brings... roadsides filled with beautiful Texas bluebonnets and orange Indian paintbrushes that we see on our way to the multitude of events in which we are involved. The Easter Bunny... is having to be more and more creative as my children get older. My ultimate Easter basket would contain... books, exercise headbands, graham crackers, and Ghiradelli milk chocolate caramel squares that I use to make my own version of marshmallow-less s’mores.

Publisher: JDA, Inc. www.jdaonline.com Editor: Mercedes Danekas-Lohse wagyuworld@yahoo.com Advertising: mercedes@jdaonline.com • (916) 837-1432 Circulation/Subscriptions: Morgan Fryer morgan@jdaonline.com • (916) 685-8980 Design Department: Hannah Ballard hannah@jdaonline.com • (916) 685-8980

Wagyu World | March/April 2016



he USDA beef grades have been the same for many years. Some people feel that it’s time for changes and updating, to reflect the changes that have been occurring in the beef industry in the past decade. The best carcasses in terms of quality and marbling are not being identified as such, since they are above and beyond Prime. Mike Kerby produces Wagyu cattle on his Buck Mountain Ranch in the Missouri Ozarks and has worked hard promoting the Wagyu breed through his Passion for Prime Event. This year’s event will be held in June at Missouri State University and will be a consignment auction and workshop on the Wagyu breed. Kerby points out that our labeling/ branding of beef today in the U.S. does not adequately identify marbling. “We don’t have a marbling system, and we don’t have a labeling system. There has been a lot of talk about a new grading system overall, and at least a grading system that can identify Wagyu beef,” he says. Kerby has been talking to many of the major Wagyu producers in this country. “It will be hard to come up with a system that labels the percentage such as half Wagyu, half Angus, as opposed to a Fullblood. A lot of the meat being produced is F1 so people don’t want to do that,” he points out. “Regarding our current meat grading system, it would probably take an act of Congress to change it.” He has talked to numerous ranchers recently to get some input on these two topics (the beef grades, and the need for branding/labeling Wagyu products) and is hoping to get additional feedback. “Perhaps eventually some of these thoughts could be presented to the American Wagyu Association board and help push something toward branding or labeling,” he says. Labels and advertising can influence public perception and create a positive perception for Wagyu beef. “When I was a kid and went to the butcher shop with my parents, the photos behind the meat


Wagyu World | March/April 2016

counter were Hereford cattle. Then over the years those photos became black cattle. The Angus breeders simply out-marketed everyone with all their advertising. You go to McDonalds today and get an Angus burger. You go to a restaurant or a grocery store and buy Certified Angus,” says Kerby. “We are at the point now in the Wa-

gyu breed that we have become the best beef producers in America. We are not the biggest, but as far as quality of the meat, day in and day out, Wagyu is it. We are still small enough but getting large enough that we now have to come up with a brand,” he explains. “It should not be American Kobe or American Style Kobe or Kobe Beef. We



Market Matters | WW

By Heather Smith-Thomas

Wagyu World Wagyu| March/April World | March/April 2016 11 2016


have to promote our own product and not take the name of another product, or we are not being truthful in our labeling.” An article on the Australian Wagyu Association website mentions that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) recently held an investigation on the labeling of Wagyu beef produced in Australia. The ACCC considered this matter in relation to their sections that deal with (1) misleading or deceptive conduct, (2) false or misleading representation that goods are of a particular standard, quality, value, grade, etc. and (3) conduct that is liable to mislead the public as to the nature, manufacturing process, characteristics or suitability for their purposes or quantity of goods. After looking into this matter, the ACCC decided not to pursue it any further at this time. The Australian Wagyu Association assisted with the investigation and welcomed this announcement. The AWA president Peter Gilmour said, “We continue to support truth in labeling principles fundamental to Australian consumer law.” The Australian government dropped the investigation in late December 2015, but Kerby says American Wagyu producers should take note. “How would you like to be a rancher just trying to make a living and then have someone from the USDA show up and tell you that you’ve violated truth in labeling. One of the things the USDA does is enforce truth in labeling and advertising. If it’s Prime, it 12

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

had better be Prime,” he says. “Not only are we facing the chances of litigation in the future, on the extreme side, but we are not helping ourselves for the future. People are starting to learn about Wagyu beef and what it is. I travel all over the world and see it on menus in many of the nicer hotels, and we’re starting to see it in more and more restaurants. Regarding labeling, we should not be hiding behind another product or saying it’s like Kobe beef. It’s Wagyu beef. Many producers are saying we should just call it American Wagyu, or even just Wagyu,” Kerby says. “Maybe we could incorporate the American Wagyu Association logo, which everyone is trying to use, with the branding of this beef. Is it enforceable for the Association to say: ‘Don’t make us come out there and change your advertising?” No. You or I or a board member have no power to regulate and enforce anything we come up with regarding labeling. But we can highly encourage it, and get everybody’s advertising dollar, whether it’s a person who is selling 10 head of cattle per year or 300 head per year,” he says. “When producers put their advertising in the local restaurants or high end beef shops, we should have a set logo that everyone will stand behind and that the public will recognize. If we are ever going to become a major player in the industry, we need to have this. If you look at the grade Prime in the U.S., it’s up 2 to 4% from what it was, and this is due

to the contribution of Wagyu bulls being used on commercial cattle,” says Kerby. “There is no reason for us to be saying that we are trying to be like the Japanese people, because we are not. We produce great beef here, but I don’t know of anyone in this country who has produced $400 per pound beef, like I’ve seen come out of Kobe, Japan. Yet we have carcasses that could be rated as 4 or 5 grades above Prime. This is where a carcass camera can be useful,” he says. “There are very few carcass cameras in the U.S. however. Even if we don’t have a carcass camera, we can come up with an IMF (intramuscular fat, or marbling) score, though it won’t appear on our USDA grade. I personally think it would be a good idea to come up with a logo and labeling that we can all get behind, and push it as much as possible— and discourage the use of the word Kobe. Let’s be proud of what we have. We have the top-of-the-line here and shouldn’t be trying to mimic anybody,” he says. Wagyu has the quality, and will always compete—on any market in the beef industry. “We can call it American Wagyu or just Wagyu and let the public decide, and hopefully our board will get behind this and do it. I’ve talked to a lot of restaurants in the U.S. and they are all serving Australian Wagyu beef. One of the speakers at my Passion for Prime event 2 years ago said that only 20% of the Wagyu beef eaten in the U.S. is produced in the U.S. Everything else is imported. What a massive market climb we could have, if we could just expand to take over our own market. I don’t want purveyors of nice restaurants and butcher shops to think they have to go to Australia or Japan to get good Wagyu. We need to have a logo and get behind it,” he says. He uses state inspectors to ship meat out of the state. “But I didn’t know until recently that there are state graders who will come out and grade our meat. I had one come to my place and he’d never graded a Wagyu before. He wasn’t sure how to grade it because he had no experience with this kind of meat. I had photos of the Japanese marbling scale, and he looked at that, and then guessed that my meat was 4 grades above Prime,” says Kerby. “We need to come up with a grading system. A well-known producer in Australia has his own labeling—C1, C2, C3,

C4 and C5. He tells his customers that C5 is his prime, and tells them what they’ll pay for it. C1 is good, but not as good as C2, C3 or C4. We can’t tell USDA that we’re going to redo the whole grading system. I’m not saying it can’t happen, but it would take a lot of push from our Association and a lot of marketing, at the national level. That would be a huge uphill battle,” he says. “One alternative would be for us, in the Wagyu industry, to have 5 grades, and they could be mixed with the USDA grades. Any carcass that was Prime or above could be a W5 (Wagyu 5), for instance, or whatever we decided to call it—to create some kind of labeling system,” he says. People who have experience in grading could help guide this and give ideas on how to set it up. “We could come up with a laddered or grading system that everyone could use, that goes along with the USDA scale. I also think that with the proper information to producers, we could probably get some good feedback that we might be able to compile and maybe make a recommendation to the board,” he says. This is something the Wagyu industry has needed for a long time. “It’s been talked about a lot, yet nothing has happened; nobody does anything about it. This year we have 6 auctions scheduled for the Wagyu breed, and that’s the most we’ve ever had. The growth is here. I feel that if we don’t get hold of it now, and get in front of it, it will be harder to catch up later.” The breeders need to get on board and move forward in a unified way. “We need a logo, and we need our name. Our logo should be professionally done, and available to all producers through the AWA or the Texas association. We all need to get behind creating a logo and a common marketing tool,” says Kerby. With input from producers who have done this all their lives, it might be possible to come up with a grading system that could be used within the industry so everyone is on the same playing field. “The worst thing we can do is finally get national recognition because the USDA is investigating claims of misleading advertising!” This is not how Wagyu breeders want to be remembered! All the breeders he has talked with

on these two topics (consistent, accurate labeling, and a grading system) have said we need to have this, and that it should have been done a long time ago. “We don’t want to force anybody into anything, but we need to come up with recommendations that might make it a lot easier to implement. We are reaching out to the ranchers and asking for their opinions and ideas on how to do this and improve our system,” he says. “My goal is to talk to people smarter than me and put together an idea and present it to the board. Hopefully we can have something implemented. This isn’t something I’m wanting to do just for my farm. I want to do this for my industry that I have invested my life and my dollars into, for the next generation. If we start building a brand that we can stand behind and grow behind, this will be better for our future,” says Kerby. The present grading system started with ideas at an earlier time. People have to start somewhere and create something that works and stands the test of time. “Our current grading system for beef is antiquated and probably needs to be updated. As a good place to start, why can’t we lobby—from our association—and say that the present grading system just doesn’t go high enough for this breed of cattle. We need a new system because often these cattle will go far above Prime. That would be great marketing, to reach the people who have never heard of Wagyu. We have advantages that we talk about inside the industry, but those advantages have to be screamed from the hilltop so the consumer can hear it. If that happens, we all win.” The meat-eating public needs to realize there is beef available that goes beyond what consumers have traditionally considered top-of-the-line. “I was at a grocery store recently and saw a display of certified USDA Choice Angus beef! They are promoting Choice! That’s like saying ‘we have the best average beef on the market’ but it’s advertising, and people don’t understand the grades enough to know what to buy. We’ll never have a Prime cut or a Wagyu 5 cut and have everybody understand it, but we could get behind the breed, the labeling, the marketing, so we are unified, and everybody’s advertising dollar is pushing the same agenda and make a difference.” Kerby feels strongly that we need to

Market Matters | WW do it soon, because the bigger the Wagyu industry becomes, the harder it will be to turn this big ship around. Even if the average consumer doesn’t understand a grading system, the people who are buying meat for high end catering, restaurants, etc. will understand it. “If we have a uniform logo, it could be on the menus at the restaurants. This could help educate the consumer, advertising this breed of cattle. It could be used ultimately for retail purposes,” says Kerby. Angus breeders started their marketing a few years back and it has paid off for them today. “We are not going to be the everyday beef, like Angus. That’s not going to happen. But we are the premium beef and we need to be marketing as the premium beef and the healthiest beef,” he says. It’s an educational process. “The one thing I know about marketing is that you have to tell people something multiple times because at first they are not going to remember it. If they see or hear it enough, it starts to sink in, and maybe feel that it’s something they want to remember. If we are all using the same labeling for this beef, every time there’s advertising in a magazine or a restaurant or a butcher shop, it’s repetitive and something people will come to recognize. We need to have a brand, and the ultimate goal of any association is not to promote itself but to promote the cattle.” Without the cattle, you won’t have an association. “It’s time to take that step. If a group of people agree upon it and the associations get behind it and help create the final plan, we can move forward. We are still in our growing, infancy stage with this breed, but we are no longer taking baby steps. We need to become organized in our advertising. Right now, there are many different logos and everyone keeps changing them. We need to get a logo and focus our marketing and stand behind it.” The element of recognition is lost if things keep changing. “With 10 different ranchers advertising their beef 8 different ways, it’s confusing. I really think the grading part will be the hardest. At our Passion for Prime auction in June I am going to try to get a meat grader from the state of Missouri to come and speak. This could >> Page 36 Wagyu World | March/April 2016


One of the best tools a cattleman can have.


always good to keep us on board for all of your marketing needs Join us for these upcoming Wagyu sales

May 21, 2016 • Bar R Production Sale • Pullman, Washintin June 11, 2016 • Passion for Prime Sale • Springfield, Missouri September 14-16 • Grandeur Frozen Genetics Sale • Coeur d’Alene, Idaho January 18, 2017 • Mile High Wagyu Experience Sale • Denver, Colorado May 20, 2017 • Bar R Production Sale • Pullman, Washington June 10, 2017 • Passion for Prime Sale • Springfield, Missouri July 22, 2017 • Lone Mountain Ranch Production Sale • Albuquerque, New Mexico

www.jdaonline.com 916•685•8980


Now Booking Sales for the Fall of 2016 & Spring of 2017

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Wagyu World | March/April 2016


Serving Locally Grown Wagyu By Heather Smith-Thomas


new eating experience for people who want to be able to appreciate locally grown food from the Sacramento area can now be enjoyed at Localis. “This is a very new restaurant; it has only been open for 7 months,” says Chef Chris Barnum. “The name Localis is Latin for local. We specialize in whatever


Wagyu World | March/April 2016

the farmers in our region are growing; whatever they are producing at a certain time of year is what goes on the menu. We don’t actually write a menu, however. We have a group of farmers who provide the food we use, and we ask them what they are growing and what they would like to grow for us.

It’s a team effort,” he says. The restaurant is located in the middle of Sacramento, on 21st and S streets. Barnum is the Executive Chef, and a partner in this new enterprise. “I have been cooking for the past seven years. The partnership I am currently involved with in Localis found me at the restaurant where I was working

Market Matters | WW

previously,” he says. They first approached him to do an Italian concept for a restaurant they were planning. “I politely declined, and then they asked me what I would want to do if I were to join them. I told them about my idea of Localis, and they decided to run with it,” says Barnum. Eating locally grown food, knowing where your food comes from, supporting local agriculture, etc. is a concept that more and more people today are embracing, so this was a perfect opportunity to try it in a restaurant. “Sacramento is the self-acclaimed farm-to-fork capital of California, so this was a good spot to open this restaurant,” he says. Localis features the many kinds of crops that are grown here, and utilizes them seasonally as they are freshly harvested. “In my search for local everything, including meats, I came across a ranch called Masami, near Corning, California which is only about an hour’s drive from Sacramento on the freeway. The processing plant for this meat is actually in Klamath Falls, Oregon, but the beef is grown and pastured here. The Masami ranch has been producing Wagyu beef since the mid 1990’s and they have a very good reputation. A lot of their beef is exported overseas, but we hope we can have more of it utilized here, for Americans to enjoy. Their product is absolutely amazing and we are really enjoying it,” says

Barnum. “We had an opportunity to see the whole process from start to finish. These cattle are brought to the plant without any stress. They are pastured at the ranch, allowed to continue grazing during their final day, watered well, then moved to Klamath Falls during the night. They travel better (with less stress) at night than they do during the day. After their arrival they spend the next entire day relaxing, and are not processed until the day after that. The kill is done one at a time, away from the herd, very stress-free. The cattle remain calm and relaxed, so there is no acid buildup in the muscles. The meat remains totally tender, and it’s a very good product. This processing plant is a small operation, and very well managed. Every aspect of the process from kill to processing is refrigerated below the necessary temperatures, so everything stays nice and cold the entire time,” he says. “The meat is then marketed through Del Monte Meats and I get our supply from them. They are based here in Sacramento. They bring in a couple different kinds of cuts just for me, because no one else in Sacramento is using that particular product. There are other people here serving Wagyu but most of them get it from Snake River Farms, which is available through Sysco, and a much bigger product. It’s a good product, but not the same. A lot of it is what I would

call commodity Wagyu,” says Barnum. “I use Wagyu for several things, including carpaccio. For that we sear it very thoroughly in cast iron (leaving it raw in the middle), then take it off and refrigerate it until it is cold. Then we slice it very thin and use some really good maldon salt—a very fine, fresh sea salt with big flakes,” he explains. “Right now we are serving it with jalapeno and lime aioli and some pickled carrots and pickled diakon radish, and cilantro. We were using the coulatte, which is not a very normal cut. It’s a short, flat meat, down there with the bavette. We used that as a steak option at restaurants for a long time, and now we have moved into serving it raw because it’s such a beautiful product,” he explains. It is very firm and hard on the outside and raw on the inside and chilled,” he says. It is meltin-your-mouth tender, and the flavor is great. “The Wagyu is such a clean, wonderful product and we enjoy using it—not just because it’s expensive, but because it is so great. I think there has been a bit of misconception because some people have had Wagyu beef that wasn’t that much different from any other Choice or Prime cut of meat. But when you get one that’s been really well grown and taken care of, the flavor is tremendous and you can really taste the difference,” >> Page 49 Wagyu World | March/April 2016


OUT & ABOUT Wagyu Sales, Shows, and Other Happenings


National Western Stock Show National Wagyu Show


January 20 th, 2016


Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Wagyu World | March/April 2016



Wagyu World | March/April 2016

>> The Results

Judge: Roger Allen Homer, IL Associate Judge: Amy Radunz River Falls, WI

Champion Black Fullblood Female YAR IWA Sakura C710 Exhibited by: Yarmony Ranch, LLC Greeley, CO

Champion Red Fullblood Female WSI Hinomaru 2 Exhibited by: Lucky 7 Cattle Co. Hamilton, TX

Champion Black Fullblood Bull MCH Sweet Willie A021 Exhibited by: Emerson Cattle Co. Owensville, IN

Reserve Champion Black Fullblood Female GAF MS Toby Sanji Exhibited by: Golden Age Farm Versailles, KY

Reserve Champion Red Fullblood Female L7 MS Red Maru 002B Exhibited by: Lucky 7 Cattle Co. Hamilton, TX

Reserve Champion Black Fullblood Bull Genesis Exhibited by: C & C Livestock Greeley, CO Rocky Mountain Wagyu Rexburg, ID

Champion Red/Black Fullblood Female GVW Michifuku 93014 Exhibited by: Gypsum Valley Wagyu Solomon, KS

Champion Black Purebred Female YAR Mikomi Fujiko C159 Exhibited by: Yarmony Ranch, LLC Greeley, CO

Reserve Champion Black Purebred Female YAR MS Genesis Fujiko Exhibited by: Yarmony Ranch, LLC Greeley, CO

Junior Shomanship

Champion Precentage Female ECC Bonnie 4E12 Exhibited by: Emerson Cattle Co. Owensville, IN

Reserve Champion Precentage Female ECC Wilma 4E03 Exhibited by: Emerson Cattle Co. Owensville, IN

Junior Division 12 Years Old & Younger Champion: Cassidy Shea Greeley, CO Res. Champion: Seth Brown Stigler, OK Senior Division 13 Years Old to 18 Years Old Champion: Tanner Lodge West Branch, IA Res. Champion: Lauren Lee Hamilton, TX

Wagyu World | March/April 2016



r e n

D ay!

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2016 National Western Stock Show & Houston Stock Show Grand Champion Black Fullblood Female


2016 National Western Stock Show & Houston Stock Show Grand Champion & Reserve Grand Champion Purebred Females

YAR Mikomi Fujiko C159 See Our Genetics at both the Steaks are High Sale and the Passion for Prime Sale!


YAR MS Genesis Fujiko Offering Full Sibs to these Champions at both events! Genetics also offered through private treaty.

www.yarmonyranch.com Christina Hall (970) 596-2654 Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Two Time NWSS

Grand Champion REG: FB18248 Sire: TF Itomichi 1/2 Sire of Dam: Michiko

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Grand Champion

2015 & 2016 National Western Stock Grand Champion Black Fullblood Bull

Reserve Champion

Champion & Reserve Champion Percentage Females

Emerson Cattle Company Owensville, Indiana

Q.B. Emerson, MD • Owner Bill Couch • Manager 812-661-9241

ECC Bonnie 4E12

ECC Wilma 4E03

Sweepin’ the 2016 Houston Bull Show Grand Champion Black Fullblood Bull MR MUCHO TF 37

BOB: 2.22.14

Reg: FB18893

Sire: TF Kikuhana Sire of Dam: Itomichi Free of all genetic defects.

Reserve Champion Black Fullblood Bull MR KIK HIGH 6081

DOB: 3.8.14

Reg: FB19067

Sire: TF Kikuhana Sire of Dam: YCB Itoshigenami 537 Free of all genetic defects by pedigree.

www.yamamotogenetics.com • 903-521-5235 • 903-530-4381 Located in Palestine, Texas

We strive to raise quality genetics! Wagyu World | March/April 2016


2016 Houston Stock Show & Rodeo Grand Champion Red Fullblood Female

Home of the 2015 Houston Reserve Grand Champion Red Fullblood Bull!

JC Empress 102

Reg. FB17763 DOB: 10-24-13 Sire: Heart Brand Red Emperor Sire of Dam: Kalanga Kajikari B0125

Red Wagyu for “Prime” Performance

Jim & Kathy Moore 254-723-2977 • 254-379-5064 • McGregor, TX • info@JMKcattle.com

i i

Wagyu Experience


Wagyu World | March/April 2016



Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo


March 8 th, 2016

Wagyu World | March/April 2016
















CHR SHIGESHIGETANI 5 Highest ranked tested free Wagyu bull in the Washington State University 2014 National Wagyu Sire Summary. At the Forefront of Original Wagyu Genetics Since 1994. Conventional and Sexed Semen Available. www.crescentharborranch.com 26

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Ralph Valdez 360.941.0644

Specializing in Original Foundation Wagyu Genetics Since 1994 Semen and Embryos Available on: Fukutsuru 068 • Kitaguni Jr. • Haruki • Takazakura • Michifuku • Kenhanafuji Yasufuku Jr. • Michifuku • Kikuyasu 400 • Shigeshigetani • Mitsuhikokura JVP Kikushige 401 • JVP Yasutanisakura 408• Hirashige -Tayasu • Sanjirou Mazda • Mt Fuji • Shigefuku 005 • Itomoritaka • Itozuru Doi Kitateruyasu Doi • CHR Kikutsuru Doi • Kage

www.crescentharborranch.com Wagyu World | March/April 2016


>> The Results

Judge: Brandt Poe College Station, TX

Champion Black Fullblood Female Exhibited by: Yarmony Ranch, LLC Greeley, CO

Reserve Champion Black Fullblood Female Exhibited by: 5 Star Ranch Burton, TX

Champion Black Fullblood Bull Exhibited by: Yamamoto Genetics Palestine, TX

Reserve Champion Black Fullblood Bull Exhibited by: Yamamoto Genetics Palestine, TX

Champion Black Purebred Female Exhibited by: Yarmony Ranch LLC Greeley, CO

Reserve Champion Black Purebred Female Exhibited by: Yarmony Ranch LLC Greeley, CO

Champion Red Fullblood Female Exhibited by: JMK Cattle

Res. Champion Percentage Red Fullblood Female Exhibited by: Lucky 7 Cattle Company Hamilton, TX

Champion Red/Black Fullblood Female Exhibited by: Turner River Ranch

Reserve Champion Red/Black Fullblood Female Exhibited by: Turner River Ranch Medina, TX

Champion Red/Black Fullblood Bull Exhibited by: Red Bull Cattle Company Fort Payne, AL

Res. Champion Red/Black Fullblood Bull Exhibited by: Turner River Ranch Medina, TX

McGregor, TX


Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Medina, TX

Champion Percentage Bull Exhibited by: Flying C Wimberley, TX

Champion Percentage Steer Exhibited by: Startz Cattle Company

Floresville, TX


Res. Champion Percentage Steer Exhibited by: Turner River Ranch Medina, TX

HeartBrand Beef Field Day


March 10 th, 2016

Wagyu World | March/April 2016


Upcoming Events Save the Date





16-19 Gypsum Valley & Friends Online Bull & Semen Sale Solomon, Kansas


Texas Wagyu Association’s Steaks are High Sale Salado, Texas

MAY 21

Bar R Production Sale Pullman, Washington


Passion for Prime Sale Springfield, Missouri


Primetime International Waukesha, Wisconsin


American Wagyu Association Annual Conference & Convention Sale Coeur d’Alene, Idaho

2017 JANUARY 19-20 National Western Stock Show Wagyu Events Denver. Colorado 18 30

Mile High Wagyu Experience Sale Denver, Colorado

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Passion for Prime Sale Springfield, Missouri


Lone Mountain Cattle Company Female Production Sale Albuquerque, New Mexico

In the News

On March 10, 2016 current and potential producers of Akaushi cattle traveled from around the globe to officially kick off the selling of unrestricted Fullblood Akaushi cattle. Traveling from places such as Paraguay, Columbia, Venezuela, and Mexico. Also, many of our current local producers and ranchers made their way to the HeartBrand Ranch for this important event. What is normally a peaceful and serene place; HeartBrand Ranch was hit with an untimely storm. Attendees braved muddy gravel roads and crossed overflowing creeks to be welcomed at 10 A.M. by Jordan Beeman, president of HeartBrand Beef and Jojo Carrales, Vice-president of cattle operations. “We feel that selling of unrestricted cattle will begin the next growth steps for the Akaushi Breed. Now breeders from around the world have the ability to acquire Akaushi Genetics and put their own touches on this great breed.” Beeman also noted “HeartBrand is continuing to buy DNA verified Akaushi calves and the sales of Certified Akaushi Beef are continuing to grow.” Shortly after Jordan’s welcome speech, Dr. Aaron Cooper, Fullblood cattle operations, oversaw a tour of the cattle. The main display groups included the top AI sires and the top six heifers that were individually selected out of the HeartBrand 2015 class of 500 heifers. Also on display were yearling bulls, donor cows and half-blood females. Guests were then treated to a catered lunch presented by Hellfighters Kitchen featuring mouth watering Akaushi fajitas with all the fixings. Following up lunch Bubba Bain gave a discussion about the benefits of the American Akaushi Association, and invited people to theTHEAkaushi SAMURI'S SECRET TO AWA BULL TRIALS F1 HEIFER PHOTO #71 Convention in Lubbock, Texas on October 28-30. He introduced Nevil Speer with AgriClear, and gave a brief over view of AgriClears partnership with the American Akaushi Association, and how AgriClear can benefit the membership. Next Bain presented Dr. Bob Kropp, an Emeritus professor for Oklahoma State University, gave an empowering speech about the future of the Akaushi breed. He even stated that Akaushi has the potential to completely change the beef industry for the better. FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108 HeartBrand would like to thank everyone who helped make this anMARB REA HC WT FAT MEA VAB960 16.0 1,031 1.0 621 other successful Akaushi event.


You Don’t Need Merlin the Magician to Change Angus Choice into Wagyu Prime of Michiyoshi’s offspring ✴100% carry the Unique Wagyu High

Marbling Exon 5 gene & Tender Unsaturated Fat SCD gene Largest Ribeye of Proven Top 7 marbling Wagyu Bulls

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OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1917

MARB REA VAB960 (Angus Cows bred to Proven Japanese Wagyu genetics) 16.0


HC WT 1,031

FAT 1.0

MEAT YLD 621lbs


FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1917 FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1781 FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1696 Semen MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD BULL TRIALS F1 18.0 HEIFER #711743 Available VAB960 16.0 1,031 1.0 621 Lbs AWA XAB1090 15.4 1,010 1.0 603 Lbs VAB960 1,268 0.5PHOTO 832 Lbs  with of Michiyoshi's offspring carry the Unique Wagyu High Marbling * 100% OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1781 Exon 5 gene and the Tender Unsaturated Fat SCD gene Volume Largest Ribye of Proven Top Seven marbling Wagyu Bulls FAT MARB REA HC WT MEAT YLD * 100% of F1 Trial offspring graded PRIME , 92% High Prime, 8% Mod Prime * Top Prime Carcass15.4 XAB1090 1,010 HIGH PRIME Discount (Angus Cows bred to Proven Japanese Wagyu genetics) Meat Yields 603lbs 1.0





Nick Bell: 231-734-0535(h) or 231-878-1154(c) email: nbamstate@gmail.com Semen Available with Volume Discount

FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1917 FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1781 FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1696 MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD VAB960 16.0 1,031 1.0 621 Lbs XAB1090 15.4 1,010 1.0 603 Lbs VAB960 18.0 1,268 0.5 832 Lbs



of Michiyoshi's offspring carry the Unique Wagyu High Marbling * 100% Exon 5 gene and the Tender Unsaturated Fat SCD geneOFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1696 Ribye of Proven Top Seven marbling Wagyu Bulls MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD * Largest of F1 Trial offspring graded PRIME , 92% High Prime, 8% Mod Prime * 100% VAB960 18.0 1,268 832lbs 0.5 Top Prime Carcass Meat Yields * Nick Bell: 231-734-0535(h) or 231-878-1154(c) email: nbamstate@gmail.com

American Wagyu Breeders, LLC

Semen Available with 8-1917 FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1781 FB9420 OFFSPRING EID #900-0860-0108-1696 AT YLD MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD MARB REA HC WT FAT MEAT YLD 1 Lbs XAB1090 15.4 1,010 1.0 603 Lbs VAB960 18.0 1,268 0.5 832 Lbs

* *


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Nick Bell: 231-734-0535 (h) • 231-878-1154 (c) • e-mail: nbamstate@gmail.com Wagyu World | March/April 2016 31

100% of Michiyoshi's offspring carry the Unique Wagyu High Marbling Exon 5 gene and the Tender Unsaturated Fat SCD gene Largest Ribye of Proven Top Seven marbling Wagyu Bulls 100% of F1 Trial offspring graded PRIME , 92% High Prime, 8% Mod Prime

By Heather Smith-Thomas


r. Quentin Emerson became interested in Wagyu cattle about 10 years ago and now has a very successful breeding program on his farm near Owensville, Indiana. “We actually started raising Wagyu 6 years ago but I’d been doing research on this breed for several years before that,” he says. He partnered with Bill Couch (a longtime friend) to show his Wagyu cattle, since Bill is one of the best judges of

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cattle in the beef industry and has a great talent for showing cattle. Over the years, Bill has had a variety of influential roles in the cattle industry. As ranch manager for Diamond C Ranch in Stephenville, Texas, he managed a 2,500-head, 55,000acre Simmental operation. Later, he managed the Pharris Farms cattle herd at Hillsboro, Texas. After returning to Owensville, Indiana (his hometown) he established

his own C-Bar Cattle Company, raising purebred Simmentals, and then accepted a managerial position with Express Ranches, a Limousin/Angus enterprise in Yukon, Oklahoma. While working there, he was instrumental in the development of Lim-Flex cattle, a composite utilizing Angus and Limousin. Then he returned to his home farm in Indiana in 2002, where he resumed production of Simmental, Angus, and SimAngus™ com-

BILL COUCH EXPERIENCES WITH CATTLE Bill has had a long and successful career breeding and showing cattle. His interesting experiences would fill a book. Some of the stories he likes to tell involve humorous and unusual situations. “I once bought a Simmental bull calf out of Idaho when I was working in Texas. We named him Spud because he came from Idaho. He came to Texas on a load of killer horses that was coming from Idaho to Texas where they still process horses. That young bull was horned, but those horses had busted his horns off and blood was plastered down the sides of his head,” Bill recalls. “I sent one of the boys who worked for me to go pick him up off that truck. He came back with this sorry-looking bull. The owner of the ranch in Texas had found this bull and was pretty proud of him. The boy working for me asked how long we’d have to show this bull. I said we’d take him to a couple of shows and when he starts getting beat we won’t have to take him anymore. He was just a calf and when we took him to his first show he was calf champion,” says Bill. “We showed him all that year as a calf and he was never beat, for calf champion. We showed him the next year as a yearling at all the shows and he was never beat for junior champion. The next year we showed him at all the shows as a 2-year-old and he was never beat for senior champion. We showed him for those 3 years and he was undefeated as a calf, yearling and 2-year-old so we never did get to send him home because he was never beat!” He was a big, growthy bull, more than 70 inches tall as a 2-yearold. Bill can tell many stories about the many, many bulls he’s shown over the years, and some of those stories have an unusual twist. He went to Alameda, California one time to show a bull calf for the man he worked for. “When I got there, the bull that the owner wanted me to show for him, I didn’t think wasn’t good enough. I looked around in the pasture and saw a bull calf that I did think was good enough, but that young bull had a chin ball marker strapped to his head, and a penile block in his sheath. The owner was using him as

posite cattle. Bill Couch has had a long and illustrious career with several breeds and is a highly respected cattle judge. He is also a strong advocate for youth programs, and has mentored hundreds of young people at the local, state and national levels. He often provided livestock for collegiate and high school judging practice and competition. “After Bill came back from Oklahoma (working at Express Ranches) and was raising his own Simmentals and Angus, I tried to tell him that Wagyu was the way to go. He had doubts about that, to say the least, but I kept bringing him articles to read. Then he’d come up with a comment about how they looked like dairy cattle,” says Quentin. The first time a beef breeder sees a Wagyu, he/she is generally not impressed! They don’t look like beef animals. “Bill is known throughout the beef world for his great show cattle, and great cattle in general in all breeds, and taking on Wagyu was a little different! But I think we are both adjusting very well,” Quentin says. “We got started and did some AI, breeding some high-end Angus cows to Wagyu bulls for our start. Over the years we have developed a lot of half-bloods, three-quarter bloods, etc. Recently we got into some fullbloods and they have done very well at the shows,” he says. “Bill and I go back a long ways. Before we took our separate paths—when he went ranching out West and I went to medical school—we showed cattle together in 4-H, in Gibson County, Indiana. He always had really good cattle and his family raised good Hereford cattle. My family had Shorthorn cattle, for several generations. Bill and I have known each other for a long time, so it made sense to

Ranch Reach | WW get back together when he came home from out West to settle back in Owensville. We started raising some cattle together.” Bill says that Quentin asked him to start running Wagyu cattle for him. “I did, but it was under quite a bit of protest at the start! But we’ve raised some pretty good Wagyu over the past few years. We’ve had national champion and reserve national champion female in the percentage show the past three years. We’ve had the national champion fullblood black Wagyu bull the last two years, and that’s the only time we’ve shown these cattle,” says Bill. “We started Quentin out right; he’s never shown anywhere that he didn’t have a champion and reserve! That includes the shows at Huston and Denver; he’s had a very successful run in the show ring with his Wagyu cattle. I told him a long time ago that I could raise the national champions, but I had to prove it to him! We’ve been fortunate in being able to do that,” Bill says. “The Angus cows we use as a base for the Wagyu percentage cattle are exceptional cows. We’ve had some really good Angus cows, and we get them all from one operation—from Wade Womack in Kentucky. His son worked for Monarch Farms in Louisiana, and when he came back to the family farm in Kentucky they sent some Wagyu semen with him. They started AI breeding some good Angus cows to a Wagyu bull and when we bought some of those cows, that’s how we got our start. We were fortunate enough to have a really good Wagyu bull, and these were really good cows.” Quentin says the first fullblood Wagyu bull he bought was from Jeffery Han

Wagyu World | March/April 2016


na at Triple H Wagyu in central Indiana. “We used that bull for the first few years, after the AI. When Monarch went out of business a couple years ago we bought some fullbloods from them. That’s how we got our fullbloods and we intend to do some embryo transplants from them this year. With our grand champion bull we figured we might as well use him and flush our fullbloods, to see what we can get out of them,” Quentin says. “We plan to flush some of our percentage cattle, too. We pick some of the best half-bloods like the grand champion and reserve grand champion, and flush them with our fullblood grand champion bull. We’ll have some three-quarterbloods and higher percentages, to put in the feedlot to see how they do,” he says. “We have a complete operation, with cow-calf, bulls, breeding, feeding, etc. from start to finish but we have to bring in a veterinarian to do the AI and ET work. We’d like to continue expanding our herd of fullbloods as we get more embryos. I’ve been collecting semen from our grand champion bull for the past year and we’ve had a lot of buyers for that semen. We also have a sale coming up in March in Kansas, and hopefully we’ll have some heifers and bred heifers for sale later this year, too,” says Quentin. The heifers are bred to this bull and will be a nice set of bred heifers. There is a lot of interest now in the Wagyu breed. Quentin has been trying to promote the breed a lot in Indiana and the tri-state area. “Some of the restaurants are a little slow getting on board, but it is coming, as more and more people hear about it. We have several restaurants that are very interested and we sell them a little bit, but right now our supply is still limited because we don’t have that


Wagyu World | March/April 2016

many finished animals to butcher; we are just doing a couple a month. There are only 2 or 3 breeders in Indiana but nationwide the Wagyu influence is coming on strong,” he says. “Bill has done a lot to help me. We were both interviewed recently by the local paper because in January 2016 he had a lifetime award given to him in Denver from the American Simmental Association. He couldn’t be there, so they did it by telephone here at the nursing home where he is,” says Quentin. “Just about everyone in the cattle business knows Bill. The first time I met Jim Danekas, we talked about Bill and how Jim knew him from years past. I became very close with Jim and we’d get together for lunch at various meetings—and since I’m a doctor he’d tell me all his medical problems. I became very fond of Jim because he was a great man and a good cattleman. He did a lot for the Wagyu breed. He promoted the good cattle in every breed, very effectively. He knew a lot about cattle and I respected his knowledge,” Quentin says. “In our program here, we’ve added a couple Limousin cows that we are flushing to this bull,” says Bill. “At the North American show last year the mature cow was champion cow/calf. At Denver this year her 2-year-old daughter was champion cow-calf pair. We’ve had two of them shown and they’ve both been champions,” he says. “We are using the Limousin to add a little more muscle to the Wagyu. For me, raising them, this is one thing we need to improve on a little bit, to add some width and dimension to these cattle. This one cow family is all we have so far, but the 2-year-old has a really nice heifer calf that’s ¾ Limousin. She will be a future

a gomer bull for detecting cows in heat! I told the owner that if I was going to show a bull for him, that’s the bull I wanted!” Bill says. “He sent that bull calf back with me, along with its mother—the Holstein recip cow that gave birth to him. But the owner didn’t want his name associated with that bull in any way because that was his gomer bull! I got that calf home and had to take the chin ball marker off, and take that penile block out, so I could show him. I took him to the Illinois State Fair and he was grand champion bull. I took him to the Indiana State Fair and he was grand champion bull. The same with Ohio, and Tennessee; I took him to 5 State Fairs in a row and he was grand champion bull at all 5 of them. The owner had some heifers he’d sent along to show, and they were winning, too,” says Bill. “That was back when the Drovers Journal ran pictures of the champions. The owner got the Drovers Journal and his winning heifers were pictured there. I called him up and he said, ‘Hey, that bull has been winning! Why haven’t you told me about that?’ So I had to remind him that he’d told me he didn’t want to be associated with that bull. I guess after the bull won at 5 state fairs he decided he might want to be associated with him. That bull went on to win at the North American and won his division at Denver. That bull was PBN Savior and became a famous breeding bull in the Simmental breed.” When Bill went to work for Express Ranches in Oklahoma he went to a big Limousin sale up north and told his boss, Bob Funk, that he wanted to buy some of the black Limousin cattle at the sale and asked Bob how much money he could have, to spend on them. Bob told Bill that he needed to own them, and to just buy them. Bob was wise enough to give Bill Couch the reins, to develop those cattle. Bill has a good eye for cattle. “He has the best eye there is,” says Quentin. He can tell at an early age whether or not a calf will make a show animal, like when they are only a week old. He can envision what they will look like later. This is a talent that very few people have. “I think you are born with it,” Quentin says. “So now I have him showing Wagyu cattle!” Bill says that he and Quentin been fortunate in their showing. “Quentin has

donor cow for the ranch. I was general manager at Express Ranches for 8 ½ years and we did a lot of embryo work for Bob Funk.” This is a large operation, with about 100,000 cattle on feed most of the time. “We ran several thousand cows out there. It’s the largest seedstock operation in North America. When I went out there we had 200 cows, and when I left there we had 2000 cows,” Bill says. “We don’t have enough room here for 2000 Wagyu cows, but we are going to grow in the next couple years,” says Quentin. “It’s a challenge, however, because the first thing people ask me when we go in to sell meat is if its grass fed. Bill and I tell people that it’s hard to find grass in the middle of winter. In southern Indiana and most of the Midwest the ground is now in row crop farming and there are hardly any pastures left. When Bill and I were growing up here, there was lots of pasture, lots of cattle and lots of fences. Now the fences are gone, the fence rows are gone and there are row crops in nearly every field. It’s hard to find a place to put our cows,” he explains. A person just about has to finish them in a feed yard rather than on grass. “We have a few that I try to hold out and keep them on grass and hay as much as I can, so that I can honestly say they are grass fed, but most of them have to be fed a little grain.” Starting in Wagyu Quentin has always been interested in cattle. “I was born on a farm and raised with Shorthorn cattle. Then I went

to medical school and became involved in medicine and practicing medicine, though I always wanted to come back to cattle. I traveled a lot, going to medical meetings and so forth, and when I was traveling, eating at restaurants, I’d always look for the best steak I could find--wherever I went. There were a few places that had the best steaks I’ve ever eaten. One was in New York City, a place called Megu at Trump Tower. They served the best steak I ever had—a pure Japanese Kobe beef steak served on top of a hot rock. It was very, very good! Another place was Bohannon’s Steak House in San Antonio, Texas,” he says. The very first Wagyu steak he ever ate was in Dallas, about 15 years ago. “After that, I’ve always looked for the best steak. The best steak in the world is always the next one! You are always looking for a better one! That’s how I found out Wagyu was the best meat,” says Quentin. “Then I found out that Wagyu meat is also good for you because it contains unsaturated fat, the healthy fat. It actually helps a person lower cholesterol and lower your bad cholesterol. It’s also high in omega-3 fatty acids. All of this makes sense medically. The medical journals always tell you not to eat red meat because it’s unhealthy, and that’s just not true,” he says. As a doctor, he is promoting healthy meat. Then when he began to try to find some Wagyu cattle to raise, he tried to talk his good friend Bill into going into this venture with him. “Eventually we did, and it’s made a great partnership,” he

Ranch Reach | WW never had one of his show cattle beat, anywhere. But it’s no different picking Wagyu cattle than it was Simmental, Angus, Limousin or whatever we were showing. The first thing you do when judging cattle is start at the ground and work up. They have to have good structure. You just add parts as you go up. It’s not that hard to take any breed and pick the best cattle. That’s the way I picked them all, over the years,” he explains. “They had Limousin cattle and Angus cattle at Express. We’ve had about everything. Out in range country, cattle must be able to travel. When I was at Express we sold bulls all over the U.S. The first thing a bull has to be able to do is move and walk to the water, and has to be able to cover the cows. Structure—good feet and legs—has to be number one, in any breed,” says Bill. “I have a friend in Hungerford, Texas who says people judge show cattle wrong, with their head up. He told me that down in his country, if they walk around with their head up, they are missing a lot of grass! He said that down there, cattle would die, walking around with their head up.” Bill would like to see some of the Wagyu cattle be a little easier fleshing, because in the real world they have to be able to maintain themselves on whatever feed is available to them. “Some of the Wagyu are a little harder keeping than what you’d like to see in the real world. Quentin and I have discussions about that,” he says. “I come from a little different background, and I think for the show ring it’s pretty important to promote the product. There are getting to be more people from other breeds seeing these cattle we’ve had in Denver and they appreciate the quality of our Wagyu. If the carcass is good, as well as the quality of the cattle, that’s two very important things wrapped up in one.” The Wagyu carcass is very impressive and really gets people’s attention. “The quality of the cattle gets their attention, as well. You’ve got to have a combination of both. It costs a lot to show these cattle and promote them, but eventually you get some return on that, when you continue having good cattle,” Bill says. Wagyu World | March/April 2016


says. “My beef eating experience has been at McDonalds!” says Bill, who all his life has generally been eating on the run during the thousands of miles he travelled showing cattle. “I’ve slowed down now, but I travelled a lot!” “We’d like to get a Wagyu show started over in Louisville so it would be close to us, because Louisville is only about an hour’s drive from us,” says Quentin. “We need another Wagyu show besides just Denver and Huston, to be able to promote these cattle in the Midwest.” Bill points out that not many folks from back east or the Midwest take cattle clear to Denver. “We need to promote these cattle in this part of the U.S. and the only way to do that is to do like I did with the Simmental cattle—haul them from show to show to promote them and what they will do for you. The Simmental Association gives a Golden Book award to people who help promote the breed. I got that award this year because I hauled those Simmental cattle all over the country to promote them. The Wagyu people need to do the same thing with their Wagyu cattle,” says Bill. “Bill’s office is full of trophies and ribbons and banners stacked from ceiling to floor. He’s had a tremendous career showing cattle!” Quentin says. “We’d like to have more shows locally. The State Fairs around here and in the Midwest don’t have Wagyu and I think they will eventually, if we promote it and get enough numbers.” For a while in Denver, the show committee didn’t think they had enough Wagyu. “I think now they are trying to get the numbers up. There were more cattle Wagyu out there this year. If it grows like

we think it will, there will probably be other shows, and some closer ones would be handier for us to go to,” says Quentin. “When I started out with Simmental cattle, the Indiana State Fair had a Simmental show, but the Indiana association had to come up with all the premium money,” says Bill. “In each state, the local association had to come up with the prize money for their state fairs, if they wanted to show. The national association didn’t acknowledge the show ring in the Simmental breed, at first. In order to get more shows for Wagyu, if we are going to have shows at state fairs, the state Wagyu associations will have to sponsor the prize money. That may be hard to do, and I don’t know how many state Wagyu associations there are. In the Simmental breed, every state had an association and that’s the way it all started. A bunch of folks around Louisville gathered up a lot of money for that show, and we won close to $10,000 one year at that one,” Bill says. “It appears to me that there are enough people in this Wagyu Association who could put up some prize money within the states and that would help a lot to get these Wagyu cattle in front of the public so people can see what we have. This is my opinion, going back to what the other breeds have done. The Angus breed has the most money behind it just because of sheer numbers,” he says. “The executive secretary of the Simmental Association called me, and wanted to see pictures of the Wagyu cattle that won in Denver the past three years. He knew quite a bit about them. So I am sending a photo of Quentin’s grand champion bull and his other champions,” says Bill.

give us some insight, realizing that we do have cattle that quite often will go Prime or above, and an opportunity to ask the questions about what it would take to get a new grading system. Even if that’s not possible, maybe we as an industry can come up with something that will work—regardless of whether we are producing F1s or fullbloods or purebreds, to be graded on this scale,” says Kerby. This is something everyone could stand behind, recognizing the exceptional carcasses—whatever they are. “If we can come up with something simple that everybody was using, we may not have to reinvent the whole wheel. We’d have something that everybody could relate to, and the meat buyers and chefs could relate to, over time, and we don’t want it to get a black eye from a consumer protection agency or the USDA. If we are not truthful in our labeling, at some point it will come back to bite us.” He feels that the Wagyu associations should eventually come up with guidelines for the industry, and a logo that could be downloaded off the website to use on menus, websites and advertising. “We just need to all get behind it, for the future of our breed. I think we will have a long run and a great future. I want this to be a family legacy for our children. The better we can make this breed, the better it will be for our children and grandchildren and beyond.”

<< Page 13



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By Heather Smith-Thomas

ome Wagyu breeders finish their own beef animals but many of them send their cattle to a custom feed yard or contract the calves to companies that finish them. A growing number of commercial producers are discovering the benefits of breeding some of their cows, especially first-calf heifers, to Wagyu bulls, and sending the offspring to a custom feed yard or one that contracts for those calves. Joe Morris, of Morris Stock Farm LLC, runs a feed yard in Texas 100 miles north of Amarillo and says 99% of the cattle on feed right now in his yard are either F1 or fullblood Wagyu.



Wagyu World | March/April 2016

“We have lots of clients who are smaller producers, scattered all over the country. We get lots of cattle from Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana, Florida, Mississippi and nearby states. Our name has gotten out there, and many people send their Wagyu calves to us. There are many producers with just a handful of cows, and we work with them because we feel that those people are just as important as stockmen who have a thousand cows.” Many of the smaller producers really care about their cattle and grow a good product. “We also have customers who have 300 cows. We get calves from anyone who wants to sell to us and we are very competitive on our prices. We work with our producers to help get them the right bulls for their kind of cattle. There are a number of Wagyu breeders who have really good genetics and we point a lot of customers to them for their bulls. I don’t make any money on that part of it, but I benefit from calves sired by those bulls,” says Morris. “I have customers who are small producers in central Texas, for instance, where 8 or 10 of them go together and put together a load of calves for me. I’ll send a truck and they have a guy who ramrods the deal; they weigh the calves and send them about 500 miles to our feed yard. Last year, we sent a truck 3 different times down to Waco to pick up calves, and sent a couple of trucks over to Tyler to help those folks. We had a couple of trucks go to Mississippi last year as well,” Morris says. “If I can’t figure out a way to get their cattle here economically, I help them find someplace else to send them, and get a good price. I like making friends, and that’s what helps make friends,” he says. He buys small groups as well as larger groups, and custom feeds for owners of all size operations—from one head up to large herds. “We feed cattle for several of the large companies that have their own cattle, and also for some that buy their cattle. They send cattle here for us to feed, and when those animals are ready to be harvested we send them to the plants,” says Morris. “There is a tremendous variety. We feed everything from F1 Holsteins to F1 British Whites. We do lots of ultra-

Health and Husbandry | WW sounding, so we know whose cattle do what. We do our very best to get the grading results back to the producers so they know what the cattle do. This year we’ve had the opportunity to buy quite a few red Wagyu crosses and we’ll get to see how those do, but we are still very excited about how the black Wagyu feed for us,” he says. His family has had a cattle operation in the Texas panhandle since 1927, when his grandfather settled here. “My father was born here. I’ve been here all my life, helping build the feed yard from scratch and doing some farming. My wife and I run the feed yard now, and my sister Sherry is assistant manager. My daughter Brandy Cartrite works here in the office and wherever we need her,” Morris says. “I also have several good employees who help us here every day, to make this work. We are permitted for 9000 head, and are gradually building Wagyu numbers so we can make it work for everyone involved. We mainly just do the feeding. If I have a customer or a neighbor who wants some steaks or hamburger, we can help get that accomplished, but most of the finished cattle go to customers like Sugar Mountain Livestock, Jackman Florida Wagyu, Imperial Beef, Rosewood, A Bar N, etc. all the way down to a small company called Food Shed Exchange,” he says. “We finish the cattle for all of these outlets. The big ones own most of their own cattle and just send them to us to custom feed, and we help them get numbers together when they become available to us. We bring cattle here and run them by these folks, and if they want them they can have them. If they don’t, we feed them to go another route.” It takes a lot of money to feed that many cattle. “We don’t finance the cattle. If people need financing to put cattle in here, we can help them get a banker. If a person is credit-worthy the local bank will finance them. That lets me concentrate on what I do best, feeding the cattle,” he explains. “We feed cattle and farm about 3000 acres, mostly dryland. The feed yard was built in 1962 and we haven’t

ever missed a feeding and we haven’t ever been empty. We are pretty proud of that,” he says. He started feeding Wagyu 6 years ago. “My sister was at a farm show in Amarillo and right around the corner from our booth was the Texas Wagyu booth. She was visiting with the people there who were involved with Wagyu. Up until that point I hadn’t heard of that breed. They were looking for a place to feed their cattle here in Texas, and I had a feed yard. About 5 or 6 Wagyu producers sent me a few cattle apiece and we kept them separate and fed them until those folks said they were ready. The Wagyu are a little different and they don’t look like commercial cattle,” says Morris. “We fed for them and everyone was happy with how those cattle did. From that point on our business started growing. Whenever they harvested those cattle we had a BMS 12 Yield Grade One. I didn’t know what that was, at the time, but found out that this grade is pretty good,” he says. “We had several other cattle that were farther down the grade scale but they all went Prime. We have a two nutritionists who help us. Dr. Bruce Young (who works through Cargill and lives in Nebraska) comes down every month and helps us get our rations figured out. We also consult with Dr. Jimmy Horner, at Bridgeport. He’s a guru specialist nutritionist on Wagyu cattle. That’s his main focus,” says Morris. “We just try to treat everybody like we want to be treated, and do the best job we can. The market is good, for these calves, but the premiums are not as good as they were a few years ago. The way the cattle market goes up and down makes it hard to figure out how to price them. There are 3 or 4 major feeders in the U.S. that commercially feed black Wagyu, but we’ve managed to get our niche and fit right there with them,” he says. The people raising Wagyu and part-Wagyu cattle need someplace to feed them, so it’s a team effort. “We’ve bought a few batches off Superior Livestock that we found out about. We help people find Wagyu bulls, if >> Page 41 Wagyu World | March/April 2016


theSTEAKS are high April 23, 2016

1:00 PM (CT) • Salado, Texas Tenroc Ranch Sale Facility 5471 Thomas Arnold Road, Salado, TX

seventh annual


FEATURING 100 LOTS OF PREMIUM RED AND BLACK WAGYU GENETICS 30 Bulls, 40 Females, 30 Genetic Packages All live cattle selling will be at the sale site for inspection.

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SALE CHAIR: Bubba Kay 512-801-1424 SALE MANAGEMENT BY:

SCHACHER AUCTION SERVICES Robert Schacher 817-219-0102 PO Box 33804, Fort Worth, Texas 76162 rob@schacherauction.com • www.schacherauction.com 40

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Sale broadcast live on www.superiorclicktobid.com


they want them, and we all help each other.” Another outfit that feeds Wagyu and Wagyu cross cattle is Agri-Beef. Wade Small, President of the Livestock Division of Agri-Beef says their Snake River Farms program started in the mid-1990’s. “Agri-Beef bought some Wagyu genetics that Robert Rebholtz Sr. purchased. We started small, trying to figure out the potential for these cattle,” he says. “It took a while to get all the feeding lined out and figure out the best way to feed and manage them. Our feeding program slowly grew, over time. It’s been a good program for people who breed a lot of heifers. This has been our main focus for commercial cow-calf producers with good Angus or English-based cow herds who are looking for a solution for heifers.” The Wagyu provides ease of calving, plus a very marketable product. “This has worked well for commercial producers because they don’t have to try to select and manage heifer bulls. It simplifies a lot of things. We have a lot of long-term relationships now, including producers who have been sending us calves for more than 15 years. This program continues to grow, and the pricing is very transparent; we base our price off an index plus an agreed-upon premium. Everyone knows how the cattle are sold, where they are going, and how they will be priced,” says Small. This makes things simpler for many ranchers, especially if they turn cattle out to calve. “They don’t have to keep the heifers confined during calving, so this reduces input in feed and labor. We also work with those producers to set up vaccination programs to help on their end and our end of the management. Typically the health is excellent on those calves. We have very few health issues with the Wagyu-cross calves from the producers we work with,” he says. The goal is to build long-term relationships. “As we make plans on what we will be breeding (in terms of numbers in our program) and anticipate what our beef demand is going to be 4 years down the road, we send bulls to some of the ranchers. It’s 9 to 10 months later that they get their heifers all calved out, and another 6 months before those calves come to us, and another 550 days before we ship those finished cattle. So you are << Page 39

looking a long ways out in the future to try to predict where you want to be,” he explains. “We are looking for long-term producers because we want this to be a consistent product year after year. We value the relationships we have with ranchers we do business with. Everyone works together. Our goal is to make sure that our genetics work better for them, year after year, and for us,” says Small. Agri-Beef has a herd of fullblood Wagyu cows and raise a majority of the bulls that sire the calves that come here. “We’ve been doing a lot of work with our

fullblood cattle to try to make them more efficient and better. Then we lease or sell bulls to cooperating producers, and contract all the calves. We have about 1000 head of Wagyu bulls that we lease to our producers, so we can control most of the genetics that we buy back into the program, and also know they will work well on heifers,” he says. “This is the 6th year we’ve collected residual feed intake data on our fullblood Wagyu cattle; we have been working hard to improve efficiency on the Wagyu side of the genetics. We are starting to see some of that pay off, but >> Page 42

Wagyu World | March/April 2016


it’s a long process with the generation interval in cattle—and then 3 times longer for the feeding end of it because of how we feed these cattle compared with conventional beef animals. It’s a long-term investment in the cattle, in the producers, and in the program itself,” says Small. Some producers use the same bulls for several years, since they are only using them on heifers and not keeping replacement heifers from them. Wagyu bulls have high fertility and excellent longevity. “They last a long time, if a person wants to keep them for multiple << Page 41

years, but we try to turn them over a bit faster just because we think we are improving our genetics. Our hope is to keep providing producers with something better. To keep improving the cattle we have to turn them over as fast as we can. But there is still value left in those bulls—and some people do choose to keep them longer,” he says. It costs less to lease a bull than to buy one. “Right now our leases are about $1000 for a bull for the breeding season. Typically the rancher keeps him only during the breeding season and doesn’t need a place to keep the bull in


Consigning in the Texas Wagyu Association Steaks are High Sale on April 23rd, 2016 at the Tenroc Ranch Sale Facility in Salado, Texas

512-225-4823 42

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

the off season. There are options to keep them longer, but many of the producers we work with don’t want to bother with these bulls the rest of the year; they don’t have to winter them or put them with their other bulls. We have some people who do, because they’d rather have the same bulls each year, and we are more than willing to leave them there. We are flexible, because every ranch operation is a little different,” Small says. “We try to work within the bounds of the producer. If the calves have to come to us right off the cow, we can take them that way. If the rancher usually weans the calves, we pay a premium for weaned calves. Some people background them and send them to us in the spring. There are also a few who keep them longer and turn them out on grass for the summer and send them to us that next fall. The calves come at various ages and sizes, depending on the operation. We feel it is easier for us to manage around those situations than it is for some of the producers to try to fit a specific program. We handle cattle 365 days a year at the feedlot, so we can make it work,” he says. There are some operations in which these calves might not be a good fit. The Wagyu-sired calves are a little bit lighter and there are some producers who feel they might be giving up too much weight. “If their program is already working well, we don’t try to change it. But we offer this option if people want to work it into their operation. We’d rather have a friend that we didn’t do business with than an enemy that we did!” About 90% of the growth in this business the past 8 years has been by word of mouth. “We don’t advertise much; most of our growth is neighboring ranchers and relationships between producers who send more customers our way. This is a testimony of the program, for us. As long as that keeps happening, we feel pretty good about what we are doing,” he says. “The main contact person for our Wagyu program is Annie Inks in our Boise office. Our feed yard where most of the cattle are fed is in American Falls, Idaho. Our fullblood Wagyu cow herd is based in Loomis, Washington. Agri-Beef owns that ranch. Over the past 8 years we’ve seen a lot of growth and more demand for Wagyu beef,” says Small.

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Wagyu World | March/April 2016

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Wagyu World | March/April 2016


STEVE SMITH By Jeri Tulley


veryone knows that it is good for your heart to eat salmon or another similar fish at least once a week, and poultry farmers have long touted the leanness of chicken versus beef. However, one of many alluring and potentially profitable benefits of Wagyu cattle is that the meat is believed to be heart-healthy for the consumer. Wagyu advocates have over twenty years of research that indicates that Wagyu fat composition has a higher ratio of monounsaturated fat to saturated fat than other beef and that it is high in oleic acid. To help further the breed by having conclusive proof of these claims, the American Wagyu Association commissioned a study comparing the differences in lipid composition among Wagyu cattle, free-range chicken breasts, and wild-caught salmon. A short study was completed first to see if a more intensive, time-consuming, and costly study was warranted. The results of that short study were available for the first time at the 2015 American Wagyu Association’s annual convention held in Ocala, Florida. Professor Stephen Smith of Texas A&M University presented his and Dr. Sherwin Siff’s findings. Siff was the other principle investigator on the study that was 46

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

completed entirely in-house at Texas A&M University. Projected to take two weeks to complete, it actually took about two months because of a major machine malfunction. In his interview with Wagyu World, Professor Smith went into detail to explain the short study even more for readers. To conduct the study, samples from ten full-blood black Wagyu grainfed animals were received from two producers. Free-range natural chickens were purchased from three different local grocery stores, and ten samples of Pacific Northwest wild-caught salmon were provided by an avid fisherman. The samples were processed for fatty acid composition, cholesterol composition, total lipid, and lipid melting point by extracting the lipids from the samples. In the case of the Wagyu samples, this meant taking the center portion of the rib steak and pulverizing it. Just the center portion was used so that only the marbling fat was included for comparison. Smith’s lab performed the Folch procedure, a method developed in 1957, which uses a mixture of chloroform and methanol found to be the best combination to extract total lipid from neutral and phospholipid biological samples from the three types of meats. Once extracted, the lipids were clear, odorless liquids at the bottom of glass vials and were ready to be tested and compared. The lipids were refrigerated, and nitrogen was blown in over the tops of the vials to eliminate oxygen. This reduced oxidation of the lipids, which is especially important to the marine fatty acids that are found in salmon. After investigating, Smith, who has studied fat for over thirty years, said, “There is quite a bit of difference in fat. As you can probably guess, the Wagyu had the most total fat at 16.1%... higher than USDA prime which has about 12% total fat.” The chicken was

leanest at 2%, and the salmon had 3% total fat. Because Wagyu has more total lipids, it was also the highest in cholesterol with 92 milligrams/100 grams of meat compared to 40 milligrams/100 grams of salmon and 39 milligrams/100 grams of chicken. The most abundant fatty acid in the Wagyu beef was oleic acid at 45% of the total lipid composition. Salmon had the lowest percentage at 16, and chicken had 32%. Oleic acid, one type of fatty acid found in nuts such as almonds and pecans, is heralded by the American Heart Association as being heart-healthy. Studies have shown it to reduce or maintain LDL (bad) cholesterol and raise HDL (good) cholesterol. In four separate dietary studies conducted at A&M using ground beef (which made it easier to control the percentage fat) both high and low in oleic acid, it was found that as the level of oleic acid was stepped up, the HDL (good cholesterol) of the participants increased. Looking at the same study a different way, it was found that grass fed beef did not significantly affect HDL because it is lower in oleic acid and that grain fed increased HDL and had no effect on LDL cholesterol or any other risk factors for cardiovascular disease. An additional finding was that long-term grain fed had an even more magnified positive health effect because it contained the highest levels of oleic acid. As an interesting side note, Smith and Siff confirmed that full-blood Wagyu cattle in America have similar in fat composition to Japanese Wagyu, although slightly lower in oleic acid (45% compared to typical Japanese fat composition percentages of 50%). Smith hypothesized that this might be because the Japanese usually feed cattle longer, or possibly that it might be due to genetics. The study proved that Wagyu beef is a great source of oleic acid, and it also proved that only cold-water fish are a good source for marine fats like EPA and DHA, as both chicken and Wagyu have barely measurable amounts of those fats. Lipid melting point was >> Page 48

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Wagyu World | March/April 2016


<< Page 46

also investigated in this study. Smith says that it is important because “the melting point of the fat is what produces that smooth mouth feel you get when you eat Wagyu. It is definitely something that can be perceived.” Salmon had the lowest lipid melting point at 3°C. Chicken was at 29°C, and Wagyu was at 27°C. Smith pointed out that conventional beef’s lipid melting point is 35°C. That is one of the reasons why Wagyu provides a premium eating experience compared to other beef. After reviewing the findings of the short study, the American Wagyu Association has commissioned a three-year “long study” comparing the lipid composition of free-range natural chicken, wild-caught salmon, and Wagyu similar to the short study. However, it will also include red Wagyu, F-1s, and Angus and assign some of each of those cattle types to be either grain-fed or grass-fed. Cattle are still needed. If you are interested in participating in this study, please contact Michael Beattie with the AWA. For a copy of the short study results, please see the American Wagyu Association’s website, Wagyu.org. 48

Wagyu World | March/April 2016

The Person Behind the Study Stephen “Steve” Smith grew up for pretty interesting conversations around living in several small towns in Califorthe table when we all sit down together.” nia. When he turned sixteen, he got Steve has an identical twin, Bryan, who his first job washing dishes in a nearSteve claims is “genetically identical but enby restaurant for $1.50/hr. and was vironmentally different.” His brother lives thrilled to death to have an income. in Olympia, Washington, and is an adminisFrom then on, he worked some kind trator for substance abuse counselors. He of odd job for spending money. He also helps set policy. pumped gas in a garage and then beJapan is one of Steve’s favorite placgan working on cars. He even worked es. He loves the culture and the food and for the forestry service for a time. thinks it is a gorgeous country. He travels When he first went to college, he there frequently on business. Steve can thought he would be an artist. After speak simple sentences in Japanese and discovering that he was colorblind would love to be fluent one day. However, and that he didn’t have an eye for he realizes that accomplishing that without composition, he drifted for a while tryliving there would be almost impossible for ing to figure out what he wanted to him. Steve describes himself as “a peaceful do in his life. He began work in the sort of person with attitude.” Most people shoe department of a store until he that know him would add “extremely intelgot his draft notice to serve in Vietligent and humorous” to that description. nam. After completing his service Five years down the road Steve sees himself in the Army, Steve had a whole new seriously considering retirement although attitude and approach to college. He he really likes the work he is doing with went to school on the GI bill and got marbling, beta agonists, and fatty acid comhis undergraduate degree in biology. position. His goal in his life work is “to see He then skipped right into the PHD it have a positive impact on the beef cattle program for Metabolic Physiology. industry and to see if it has any applications Steve “spent a lot of time looking at in real life.” liver cells from white rats” before he got tired of that, and, in 1979, at an opportune meeting, his work with cattle and marbling began. In 1983, Steve went to work for Texas 1th, 2016 1 e n A&M University where u J g in Sell he met his wife Dana, who has her Doctorate in nutrition and is a Registered Dietician. On their first date • A Buck Mountain Cattle Company Proven Steve took Dana to Donor Cow Spaghetti Warehouse • A ½ Red ½ Black Herd Sire Prospect with in Austin. He remembers, “I was very nera SCD: AA, Tenderness: 5, Exon: BC & has vous. We sat at a tiny ranked in the top 20% for RE, IMF and YW little table inside a pasof all calves born at Buck Mountain Ranch senger car….the two of us and about 300 other • Bulls that will come with a guaranteed buy people.” Now they back on all calves to Imperial Wagyu Beef have three children • Pregnancies and much more... who are all extremely well educated, are all musically inclined, and whose names all begin with “E”…Ellen, Ethan, and Evan. The Mike Kerby P.O. Box 1692 • Warsaw, MO 65355 youngest, Evan, is the 606-221-9225 • mkerby@aol.com only one still at home, www.buckmountainranch.com and he’s in 8th grade. Steve says, “It makes

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says Barnum. “We can’t get our hands on enough of it! We do an entrée with it because we just can’t get that much of it. Doing the carpaccio, we can create a lot more portions. And when we break all the pieces down, we always end up with some scraps and trimmings. We blend those 50-50 with some local lamb and make a meatball dish. We try to use every bit of the Wagyu, and this meatball dish is very tender and tasty. It’s nice to have the flavor contrast between the lamb and the beef, and this local lamb is very good—it’s less gamy than the Australian or New Zealand or even Colorado lamb,” he explains. Barnum became familiar with Wagyu on his search for the best products to feature in the restaurant. “I was looking around for farmers who cared a lot about how they are growing their crop—whatever it is, whether vegetables or animals or fruit. I don’t use small farms’ products exclusively, however. There are also some bigger

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farms out there that are doing things the right way. For me, it’s more about how I feel about them and their product than how big or how small they are,” he says. He usually travels to wherever he gets the products, meets the people who grow them, and see the operations for himself. This way he can get a feel for how the crops are grown and cared for. “I wish that more people would eat the many other cuts of beef besides fillet mignon and rib eyes and New York steaks. There are a lot of other great cuts that people don’t seem to eat very often. I use beef cheeks quite often in my cooking because they are absolutely amazing, but many people are not even interested in trying beef cheeks. I wish they would try different parts of the animal because then we could use all of it in our processing rather than turning a large part of it into just ground meat. There are many options that are ignored or overlooked,” he says.

Wagyu World | March/April 2016


Advertiser’s Index A to Z Feeders...............................................................................47

Kay Ranch .....................................................................................41

American Wagyu Breeders, LLC............................................... 31

Livestock Mortality Insurance....................................................49

Bald Ridge.................................................................................... 43

Marble Ranch................................................................................52

Bar R Genetics LLC..................................................................... 5

Mile High Wagyu Experience.................................................... 24

Buck Mountain Ranch................................................................48

Morris Stock Farm LLC.............................................................. 49

C.D. “Butch” Booker................................................................... 43

ORIgen.......................................................................................... 37

Colorado Genetics....................................................................... 43

Passion for Prime.......................................................................... 4

Crescent Harbor.................................................................... 26, 27

Protocol Technologies................................................................. 15

Designer Wagyu........................................................................ 2, 3

Sutton Creek Cattle Co................................................................43

Emerson Cattle Co...................................................................... 23

Tebben Ranch...............................................................................42

Gabriel Family Farms.................................................................. 50

Texas Wagyu Association............................................................40

Golden Age Farm.........................................................................47

Triangle B Ranch......................................................................... 43


Vermont Wagyu........................................................................... 47

Imperial Wagyu............................................................................50

Yamamoto Genetics.................................................................... 23

JMK Cattle.....................................................................................24

Yarmony Ranch........................................................................... 22


Wagyu World | March/April 2016

Wagyu World | March/April 2016



c/o James Danekas & Associates, Inc. P.O. Box 410 Wilton, CA 95693


Wagyu World | March/April 2016


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