Page 1

F&R LivestockResource

Winter 2019 | Volume 2, Issue 2

Your direct source for livestock news and information

Published by Farmers & Ranchers Livestock, Salina, Kansas

In this Issue: 1 Jump Start Sustained Productivity

There are several steps cattlemen can take to manage a calving season suited to the environment. Genetic selection and the use of AI makes genetic progress faster and more successful.

12 Genomics are Increasing Certainty

Developing technology in genomics is helping producers reach their goals quicker. Genomic-enhanced EPDs offer reliability of his performance from the day a bull is born.

14 Steady Prices—Soft Landing

Consumer beef demand, both domestic and international, continues underpinning cattle and beef prices at near-steady levels year over year, despite increasing production of beef and competing meats.

19 Achieving a Successful Calving Season

As veterinarians, the importance of diagnosing pregnancy for a ranch is a valuable tool. Like a balance sheet for a business, palpating for pregnancy gives us an idea of what is happening on that day.

20 Grid Marketing, Ranch View

This summer’s Certified Angus Beef ® brand’s Feeding Quality Forum summarized the rancher’s dilemma of day-to-day decisions and hitting an end-product target.

22 Market for Fake Meat is Real but Small

A category of alternative protein in the marketplace is expected to see somewhat significant increased market size by 2025. This growth is leading to increased regulatory oversight and shifts in market share.

32 Near the Pinnacle of Beef Quality

Angus Value Discovery Contest winners are named.

40 That Nerve There

The latest episode of Hooter McCormick’s misadventures.

Jump Start Sustained Productivity Old and new tools add value to AI heifers. By Wes Ishmael

“We can change the calving date significantly to better fit the environment, get easy calving and still have as many or more pounds at weaning,” says Tim Olson of CATL Resources at St. Onge, South Dakota. He’s talking about using estrus synchronization and breeding heifers via artificial insemination (AI), in order to

manage the calving season, along with the associated labor and resources. In fact, after working with some operations for several years, he says, “We’ve been able to move their calving season as much as a month later, calve for a shorter period of time and increase their weaning weights.”

Continued on page 4 ________________________________________

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F&R Livestock

From the Editor

Resource

Volume 2, Issue 2 Winter 2019

The agriculture community continually proves the impossible is achievable.

Published quarterly by

Farmers & Ranchers Livestock, Salina, Kansas 1500 W. Old Hwy 40 Salina, Kansas 67401 785-825-0211 • 785-826-1590 (fax) FandRLive.com

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Owner: Farmers & Ranchers Livestock, Mike Samples, Salina, Kansas (785) 826-7884 Editor: Deb Norton, Deb@CogentIdeasInc.com Production Coordinator: Julie Tucker Graphic Designer: Daric Wells Editorial Assistants: Dixie Russell, Dave Cumpton Contributing Editors: Wes Ishmael, Paige Nelson and Micah Samples Contributing Artist: Ted Foulkes Sales Andrew Sylvester Farmers & Ranchers Livestock (785) 456-4352 Jay Carlson Carlson Media Group, LLC (913) 967-9085

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F&R Livestock Resource is published quarterly with mail dates of January 15, March 1, August 15 and October 1 by Farmers & Ranchers Livestock, Salina, Kansas.

By Deb Norton

Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing. — Muhammad Ali At the risk of starting out the new year sounding a bit too philosophical, Muhammad Ali’s definition of impossible struck a chord with me. Nearly two years ago, March 9, 2017, to be exact, I shockingly believed I was seeing as close to impossible as I’ve ever witnessed in my life. That day was about 72 hours after the Starbuck Wildfire consumed more than a half million acres of pristine Kansas pastures in Clark County, more than 10,000 head of cattle, 30 homes gone. Working facilities, implements and vehicles gone. More tragically, seven lives were lost in Kansas and Texas. Before the monstrous fire burned itself out, more than 1.5 million acres were burned, and thousands of miles of fences and hay reserves were gone. Almost no one was untouched or without loss. Cow-calf producers’ assets were gone. Cow herds were dead in the pastures. Since it was calving season, most producers not only lost the cow, but the calf she either just gave birth

to or was about to calve. Embers from burning fence posts were still smoking. Piles of burning hay continued to smolder. Even the wildlife couldn’t outrun or outsmart the fire. By the time my business partner and I arrived, recovery efforts were already in full forward motion. Convoys of hay and fencing supplies were arriving 24 hours a day from all across America. Volunteer firefighters still remained vigilant. Command posts were set up in Ashland to accept donations of hay and supplies. Volunteer veterinarians from K-State and other communities arrived to assist the Ashland Veterinary Center in the seemingly impossible job of loss assessment and seemingly endless job of humane euthanasia of cattle injured beyond any hope of recovery. I’ve never seen war. Only pictures or the movies. I’ve never been to the moon. Only pictures or the movies. But, southwest Kansas and Clark County looked like the devastation I’d seen in pictures of war and desolation on the moon. Everything was gone. Every blade of grass was gone and all that was left was blowing sand, dead cattle and the smell of an unimaginable catastrophe. The Starbuck Wildfire has been widely reported and periodically revisited since the fateful day in early March of 2017. What’s interesting about a seemingly impossible battle isn’t the event itself. It’s the people left to define impossible. As tragic and horrific and costly as the Starbuck Wildfire was, before the fire was fully extinguished, people, en masse, volunteered to form the most amazing battalion of fighters determined to prove impossible was temporary. Most everyone effected by the wildfire has moved on and those memories are in their rearview mirrors. Abundant and above average rainfall following the fire has replenished the pastures. Fencing crews called Clark County home for most of the following year. Homes, barns, working facilities and livestock have been mostly replaced. Most remarkable is the fact that no one quit. The collective arms of the agricultural community surrounded Clark County in providing long term support and has been a spectacle to witness. The wildfire hasn’t been the only natural disaster delivered by Mother Nature, nor will it be the last. Hurricanes, tornadoes, blizzards and drought are equally as devastating to agriculture and have the potential to impact production immediately as well as markets around the world in the longer term. Continued on page 42 ___________________________________________________________________________________

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F&R Livestock Resource page 3


Continued from page 1 ________________________________________

CATL Resources provides whole herd health and reproductive services to beef herds in South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, and Wyoming. Tim is a beef specialist with Select Sires, who specializes in synchronization and AI. Tim’s wife, Chandy, is a large animal veterinarian, specializing in bovine reproduction, licensed in those aforementioned states. Levi Garbel, another reproduction-focused veterinarian is also part of the team. For perspective, CATL Resources typically will synchronize and AIbreed 10,000–12,000 heifers and cows each year from April to August, plus a few more groups in the fall. CATL Resources will ultrasound pregnancy test 30,000–40,000 head every year. “The size of the groups that we typically work with range from less than 30 head to 2,500 head,” Chandy explains. “We have also been involved with large

groups of speculation heifer projects that were as large as 4,000 head.”

Evaluating Heifer Developers

Back to the Tighter Calving Window “We can get half of them pregnant on day one of the breeding season, 60 percent to calve in the first 10 days of the calving season, and then the rest to calve in less than 45 days,” Tim explains. “We can eliminate most of the calving problems by using proven genetics.” After a few years, Olson’s clients can see 80-90 percent of AI-bred females calving in a 45-day window. Getting more calves born earlier in the season, and all of them within a narrow window, increases uniformity and the average weaning age of the calves, which is one driver of increased weaning weights. The other comes with the opportunity to use proven calving ease AI sires that

Brady Chandler, an owner and managing partner of Pinnacle Cattle Development Center, LLC at Desdemona, Texas, offers these tips and questions when considering potential providers of custom heifer development. What’s the ration and targeted gain? Feedlots and grow yards can put pounds on cattle. If they lack experience in developing heifers, though, it could mean adding too many pounds too fast. What’s the health program? Along with basic health protocols, Chandler says to check if commingled, sale barn cattle occupy the same facility. What’s the biosecurity program? How do they synchronize and breed heifers? Protocols vary, as do philosophies and ultimate success. What other services are offered? As an example, PCDC helps customers pool open heifers to market as feeders, along with their steer mates, then helps retrieve carcass data. Ask for referrals Visit with current customers. Ask them about their overall experience, the good and the bad, any surprises along the way. Look at the facility It certainly doesn’t have to be fancy but must be functional. For instance, Chandler says to consider how easy is it to move cattle through the facility and how conducive it is to low-stress handling. Ask questions The more you know about a potential heifer development provider, and the more you share about your specific herd goals and history, the more likely reality will land closest to your expectations. offer plenty of performance. “Historically, heifer bulls were heifer bulls,” says Brady Chandler, an owner and managing partner (along

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calves can be born light, achieve early, fast, efficient growth and finish at an optimum weight with optimum carcass quality. We don’t have to sacrifice anymore, just to get a live calf on the ground, basically throwing away the revenue potential of that first calf. When you can use a $100,000 bull in a commercial herd with a straw of semen for $25, that’s a big deal.” PCDC is a professional heifer development center that also weans calves for clients, while providing a wide range of marketing assistance programs. The centerpiece of operations is a state-of-the-art 1,000-head facility built from the ground up to develop and breed heifers, designed with a focus on low-stress cattle movement. “We can have it all,” Olson agrees.

“Some producers are still stuck in the paradigm from 20 years ago that said, ‘You can’t have a cow that produces a good calf that works in the feedlot and has a good carcass that also will go out and work as a cow in the real world.’ Genetics today mean that we can and

are doing that. It’s sad to think that some believe they can only improve the traits that are important to them, but not to anyone else in the supply chain.” Moreover, in Chandler’s neck of the woods, commercial producers historically used heifer bulls for a couple of years and then for another couple of seasons with mature cows, in order to dilute bull cost. So, he explains, they were stealing performance from both the heifers and the cows. “My producers quit buying heifer bulls, so they don’t have as many bulls around, which is always a benefit,” Chandler says. And, he’s in the seedstock bull business, too. Beyond managing the calving season and calving ease itself, Olson

says it’s a short step for new users to understand the power AI offers them to make genetic progress in the areas important to them, be it yearling growth, disposition, carcass traits or udder quality. “Higher fertility means more revenue to the operation. Performance benefits are when you start to see the wheels turn with money,” Chandler says. For that matter, Olson has seen some utilize the power of AI and proven genetics to foster a new enterprise to support kids returning to the ranch. He shares the example of one ranch that was land-locked, with no room to expand locally. Since they knew the genetics in their cows and the calves they were producing, retaining ownership in their calves through the feedlot was a logical step. “They increased their income significantly from the same number of cows,” Olson says. Similarly, Chandler explains many of the heifers he develops are for customers who retain ownership in their calves and then market them on a specific quality based value grid. Even if customers don’t retain ownership, he explains using those kinds of genetics increases the value of the calves they’re selling. “My people want it all,” says Chandler. “We try not to recommend maternal bulls or carcass bulls, but bulls that are balanced in their traits. Everyone wants to make cows, but you can’t throw away the opportunity to capture more value through pounds and carcass potential.” He works with about every major bull stud there is. He combs through the offerings and develops a short list of candidates for customers to use in selection.

Taking the Next Step AI has been around for decades, of course, but remains vastly underutilized in the cattle business. For instance, according to the National Animal Health Monitoring Service (NAHMS) Beef 2007-2008 II (the most recent report available), only 16.3 percent of beef cow operations with 100-199 head utilized artificial insemination; 19.8 percent for operations with 200 or more cows. For use of estrus synchronization, it was 14.9 percent and 19.3 percent, respectively. “Once most do it this way, they never want to go back to how they were doing it before,” Chandler says. At PCDC, he’s talking about both AI and having someone else develop their heifers. After producers AI their heifers the first time, Olson says most adopt it going forward. Breeding heifers with AI serves as the entry point for some page 6

Winter 2019


Farmers & Ranchers Livestock Commission Salina, Kansas

Fall Classic Catalog Horse Sale Results 2018 Futurity Results

Saturday Top 20 Sellers

Reining 1st 30 Smart Mates Playgun 2nd 7 Whiskeys Three Bars 3rd 16 Jose Whiskey Knoles 4th 29 GB Hickoroo Boon 2015   Cow 1st 30 Smart Mates Playgun 2nd 31 Peptos Hot Tamale 3rd 37 Top Tater Top 4th 16 Jose Whiskey   Trail  1st 31 Peptos Hot Tamale 2nd 34 TRF Little Lena 3rd 12 Hombres Colt 45 4th 30 Smart Mates Playgun   Overall 1st 30 Smart Mates Playgun 2nd 31 Peptos Hot Tamale 3rd 16 Jose Whiskey 4th 7 Whiskeys Three Bars 5th 12 Hombres Colt 45 6th 34 TRF Little Lena 7th 4 Starlite High Brow 8th 18 Hidden Pepolena 9th 37 Top Tater Top 10th 29 Paddy Catt 11 TLJ Rey Lena Dual 47 GB Hickoroo Boon 2015   Nominator of WinnerDiamond L Ranch

19

Brad Budden

25

Patrick Chester

188

Ryon Boatright

28

Ryon Boatright

52

Kyle Schmitt

22

Meyer Horse Co

107

Brad Chapman

13

Chad Harris

80

Kyle Schmitt

141

Tommy McCartney

Place Lot #Owner

Rider

Lot Consignor

$600 $450 $300

Dan Barner Dan Barner Jon McConnell

Jeremey Knoles Jeremey Knoles Jeremey

$150

Good Bros

Johann Thomasson

$600 $450 $300 $150

Dan Barner Brady James Casey Beverlin Jon McConnell

Jeremey Knoles Travis Stevens Casey Beverlin Jeremey Knoles

$600 $450 $300 $150

Brady James Chad Harris Chad Harris Dan Barner

Travis Stevens Chad Harris Chad Harris Jeremey Knoles

$4,495 $3,720 $2,945 $2,170 $1,395 $775 $500 $500 $500 $166 $166 $166

Dan Barner Brady James Jon McConnell Dan Barner Chad Harris Chad Harris Dan Barner Rob Jacobs Casey Beverlin Good Bros Adam Frisch Ricky Dusin

Jeremey Knoles Travis Stevens Jeremey Knoles Jeremey Knoles Chad Harris  Chad Harris Alesa Jones Weston Jacobs  Casey Beverlin  Johann Thomasson Adam Frisch Liberty Schmied

$500

Sunday Top 20 Sellers Lot 435 320 332 333 282 472 413 397 404 470 267 415 446 454 326 412 346 393 255 289

Consignor

Patty Chestnut (2017 gray gelding) Al Coulter (2017 sorrel gelding) Cooper Smith (2017 sorrel stallion) Ron Richards (2017 palomino gelding) Patty Chestnut (2017 gray stallion) Joe Bevington (2017 bay gelding) Doug Percival (2017 gray filly) Barner QH (2017 black filly) Patty Chestnut (2017 sorrel stallion) Patty Chestnut (2017 sorrel gelding) James Rohleder (2018 bay colt) Lance Most (2017 chestnut filly) Patty Chestnut (2017 sorrel gelding) Two Creeks Cowhorses (2017 sorrel gelding) Kevin Smith (2017 sorrel filly) Joe Bevington (2017 palomino stallion) Patty Chestnut (2017 gray stallion) Two Creeks Cowhorses (2017 sorrel stallion) Tiny Marston (2018 palomino stallion) Joe Bevington (2017 buckskin stallion)

Name

Name

4004 Dan Barner 4010 Kyle Elwood 153

Petska Trinity Equine

145

Rob Jacobs

4007 Patrick Chester 14

Cooper Smith

161

Good Bros Cattle Co

4013 Salvador Torres

Price

Royal N Real Blue

$6,000

AC Sparklin Delcielo

$5,000

Peptos Blu Boon

$3,600

Shiner Joes Pal

$3,200

Cowboys Boon Badge

$3,100

TFR Shining Vintage

$2,900

Eyesa Special Corona

$2,800

Frenchmans Blk Irish

$2,600

Cowboys Boon A709

$2,550

Two Dreamy Quixote

$2,500

49

Marcus Schrock

57

Reed & Jesse Boos

154

Casey Beverlin

Price

Hot Shot Of Whiskey $14,000 (2011 bay gelding by Paddy Socks—team roping) Skyjac $10,800 (2014 dun gelding by Three Dee Skyline—team roping) LT Lectric Jo $10,600 (2011 bay gelding by a grandson of Freckles Playboy and High Brow Hickory; out of a granddaughter of Doc O’Lena—rodeo head horse) Smoke In The Skyline $10,000 (2016 gray gelding by Three Dee Skyline—prospect) Nu Magic Chex Te Cash $9,800 (2011 Paint gelding by Cash Tuck Away—team roping) Dude Invest An Asset $8,700 (2011 buckskin gelding by Invest In An Asset— team roping and ranch) Dual Star Doc $8,500 (2010 dun gelding, grandson of Dual Pep—heel horse) Hombres Colt 45 $8,400 (2015 buckskin gelding by TS Big Shot Doc—Futurity entry) Didos Peppy $8,000 (2010 dun gelding grandson of Peppy San Badger—team roping) RF Disco Tune Cat $7,800 (2012 Chestnut gelding by a grandson of High Brow Cat—ranching) $7,600 (2015 Bay gelding by Dun Looking For Paddy—Futurity money winner) $7,000 (2015 Bay gelding by Docs Tivio Goldseeker—Futurity entry) Bobs Packin Sugar $6,700 (2011 Sorrel Gelding grandson of Smart Chic Olena—reiner) Palos SI Olena $6,300 (2012 Sorrel Gelding by Palo Duro Cat—ranch) $6,300 (2015 Blue Roan Gelding by Gotta Lot Of Chic) LA Chic $6,200 (2014 Chestnut Stallion by Smart Chich Olena—breeding stallion) GB Hickaroo Boon 2015 $6,100 (2015 palomino gelding by Holly Boon King—Futurity entry) $6,000 (2015 bay gelding by Docs Tivio Goldseeker—Futurity entry) TR Kit Gold Rey $5,900 (2012 sorrel gelding grandson of Dual Rey—rope horse) Pando De Oros $5,900 (2008 palomino gelding by Dun De Oros—team roping) Miss Chocolate Cat $5,900 (2015 bay roan mare by CRR Hurricane Cat—Futurity entry)

Futurity Winner Lot 30, Smart Mates Playgun, $4,495

High Seller Lot 19, Shot of Whiskey, $14,000

2nd High Seller Lot 25, Skijack, $10,800

3rd High Seller Lot 188, LT Lectric Jo, $10,600

Lot 320, AC Sparklin Delcielo, $5,000

4th High Seller Lot 28, Smoke In The Skyline, $10,000

$2,400 Bowmans Secret Sadie

$2,400

Ima Buck Lena

$2,400

Boomerjac Light

$2,400

Sassy Pepper Cat

$2,300

Freckles Gold Haida

$2,100

King Power Blue

$2,050

Lil Catalight

$2,050 $2,000

Pour One For Buck

$2,000

Thanks to all the consignors and buyers for another great event! Farmers & Ranchers • 785-825-0211 Mike Samples • 785-826-7884 | Kyle Elwood • 785-493-2901 Visit our Website: www.FandRLive.com


to also use it on 2-year-olds, and ultimately the entire herd. That’s another paradigm breaker. Some producers shy away from considering AI on wet 2s, for the understandable reason they tend to be the toughest to get pregnant. In the CATL Resources system, 2-year-olds have some of the highest pregnancy rates. “It all builds off of the yearling platform,” Olson says. “It makes every breeding season after that first one easier and they stay in the herd longer.”

Selecting Heifer Investments “I recommend to our customers that they cut off the bottom 10-15 percent of their heifers and then send us all of the rest,” Chandler says. While logic suggests keeping the biggest and oldest heifers as replacements, Chandler explains, “I’ve seen too many heifers out of the middle third that become some of the top heifers when they have a chance to grow. They jump to the front but would have been missed if you just kept the biggest ones at weaning.” Consequently, he believes the best time to select heifers is after preg-checking, rather than on the front end before they’re developed. “Most of our customers are over the

paradigm of NOT retaining heifers out of their first-calf heifers,” Olson says. “They have found these heifers have the greatest genetic potential than any other animals on their place. We are using proven genetics on these heifers, bulls we know more about than most.” Though often lost in the shuffle, it also pays to remember that genetic predictions today are more accurate than at any time in history (see “Genomics are Increasing Certainty”). “Identify what’s important to you in terms of your goals and environment,” Olson says. Most times, he says simply eliminating the extremes on either end will help. He also notes disposition is

becoming a key selection criteria for many, given the shortage of experienced labor and the aging of existing labor.

Developing for the Long Haul Depending on who’s running the abacus, the cost of developing replacement heifers ranks alongside cow depreciation as primary profit suckers in cow-calf operations. “It’s hard to get over a good start,” Olson says. “This has been my mantra for many years. We see many different ways to develop heifers, as well as extreme variations in first-service

conception rates. There is a fine line between developing heifers for maximum results, and optimum results. “Traditional development protocols have often been used to maximize results, often including breeding the heifers earlier than the cows to help manage labor during calving season, as well as giving them extra time post partum to heal and become pregnant again. I would challenge that mentality with developing your heifers for optimal results, which may include a less aggressive prebreeding ration and one that is more closely related to their future environment.” Chandler couldn’t agree more. He limit-feeds a high-roughage ration geared towards average daily gain of 1.5-2.0 pounds He explains the ration also keeps heifer guts expanded so their performance doesn’t slip when they return to home pastures. Besides feeding heifers to optimum body condition, Chandler believes some underestimate the value of skeletal growth. “We can use the best calving ease genetics in the world, but if she doesn’t have enough room to calve, it doesn’t make any difference. I feel like it makes a big difference in fertility,” Chandler says. He uses the example of a heifer developed for too few days, weighing 800

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Winter 2019


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pounds at breeding. She’s still growing while she’s building that first calf. She calves, is lactating, and still trying to finish growing at the same time she needs to breed back. “When you develop them to the optimum frame size, the growth is taken care of. She calves easy because she had enough room to calve. It speeds up the process of breeding back the second time,” Chandler says. “The process to breed them back a second time starts when we get heifers in here to develop, in order to get them successfully bred the first time.” Or, as Olson says, “Managing heifers during and after the breeding season is just as important as the time leading up to the breeding season. A little extra pressure on your heifers’ reproductively will ultimately help them transition into the mature cow herd and help reach your ultimate goals. Managing your expectations is just as important as managing your heifers.”

Home Versus Custom Development Ideally, if you can develop your heifers at your own place with your own ration, that’s the best. On the farm, you have control over them for their lifetime, including herd health,” Olson believes. “But some don’t have the time, labor or resources to do that.

page 10

Winter 2019

Outsourcing some of these details is a great way to help you and your operation. Obviously, we have made a living helping producers with the implementation of synchronization and AI, and ultimately reaching the reproductive goals they have set for their cow herd.” Olson says the same can be said of outsourcing heifer development, as long as you do your homework, and make sure they’re not going to be overconditioned (see “Evaluating Heifer Developers”). Moreover, Chandler doesn’t believe heifers must be developed in near proximity to their home ranches. But, he adds, “The closer you can stay to home, the easier it is for some to try something new. We have customers who want to come look at their cattle during development. If they don’t have experience with AI, some will come to watch us breed their heifers.” In his part of the world, where drought is common, Chandler believes off-ranch development also provides a hedge to pasture resources. Heifers developed at PCDC typically arrive in March and then head back home in early summer. “By that time, you know what pasture you have. Now, you can make a management decision,” Chandler says. Maybe you need to market some of them, or all of them. Besides which,

they’re likely worth more than bullbred heifers that will calve across 90 days, instead of within a tight AI window (see “Market Value”). Whether developing heifers at home or considering custom development, Chandler says too many producers undervalue the labor, grass and other feed resources involved. In part, he says that goes along with the buysell mindset associated with margin operators, rather than that of an asset manager who invests for sustained, long-term gain. “Commercial cow-calf producers are asset managers. If you have an open cow, that’s a non-producing asset,” Chandler explains. “When you develop your own heifers, they’re a non-producing asset for two years. If you can outsource the development, it also gives you a hedge on resources.”

Adding Heifer Market Value Besides having the opportunity to add more genetic value to the home herd, proper heifer development and AI sire selection makes these heifers more valuable to others, as well. “The ones you sell that are AIbred for a tight calving window are worth an extra $200-$300. I’ve never seen such a wide spread on breeding stock,” Chandler says. “The AI-bred

heifer will bring more, no matter the market.” Although markets vary over time and across geography, Olson says, “When producers have a good reputation of a disciplined breeding program, and reach the point where they can market excess replacement-quality females, or bred heifers, they will always do well. They can demand similar or better prices than their steer mates and the bred heifers may often be hundreds of dollars higher than the average.” Likewise, when buying replacements, Olson says, “Sourcing females from herds with a reputation of solid reproductive management practices, including AI, is a great way to make large strides toward your goals.” Taken to the cutting edge, documenting the genetic potential of steer mates to these heifers can reduce risk for buyers, meaning some will pay more. “It is really fun to watch my customers achieve the goals that they have set for their cow herd, as well as help the industry as a whole,” Olson says. “The producers that we work with, who have a strong understanding of the entire industry, have an even better understanding of the importance of the cow herd.”


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Genomics are Increasing Certainty By Wes Ishmael

“You can’t tell what a heifer’s genetic potential is by looking at her. By utilizing technology such as genomics, it will ultimately help you reach your goals quicker,” says Tim Olson of CATL Resources at St Onge, South Dakota (see “Jumpstart Sustained Productivity”).

“Where commercial producers are really making progress is by using proven AI sires and genomically tested bulls.” —Bill Bowman

Generally speaking, commercial cow-calf producers have a couple of ways to utilize genomics. First is by using bulls and AI sires that are genomically tested. In simple terms that means the bull’s DNA is part of his genetic evaluation, along with his pedigree, own performance data and ultimately progeny performance. This results in what are known as genomic-enhanced EPDs (GE-EPDs). GE-EPDs offer as much reliability the day a bull is born, as knowing the bull’s performance and that of

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10-20 progeny, depending on the trait. Moreover, recent developments in how EPDs are calculated mean prediction accuracy also increases for relatives that aren’t genomically tested. Most widely used breeds now utilize this new method of calculating EPDs. It’s referred to as single-step because pedigree, genotype, phenotypic information and progeny performance are incorporated into the calculation at the same time. Before, genomic data was added to EPDs, which had already been calculated. “Where commercial producers are really making progress is by using proven AI sires and genomically tested bulls,” says Bill Bowman, a founding partner of Method Genetics at St. Joseph, Missouri. Method Genetics began offering single-step genetic evaluation several years ago, before the breed associations. The other primary way commercial producers are using genomic technology is via genomic tests of individual cattle. Several companies offer the DNA or genomic profiles you’re likely familiar with, which estimate the genetic potential of a heifer replacement candidate, for instance, via a score relative to the population from which the test was derived. Method Genetics genomic tests incorporate the animal’s DNA with known sire and potentially, dam information—a bull’s registration paper, for instance—to calculate GE-EPDs for calving ease direct, calving ease ma-

“Commercial producers can hone in on where they want to improve, using the same tools as the seedstock producers in the system, rather than interpret what a value means in a different evaluation system.” —Bill Bowman


ternal, docility, marbling, ribeye area and carcass weight. Method Genetics converts these GE-EPDs into three industry-focused indexes weighted for the real world of commercial cattle production: Maternal Production Index (MPI); Quality Pounds Index (QPI); Retained Ownership Income Index (ROI). Indexes are most effectively used as a selection tool for moving populations of cattle in one direction or another, without leaving an economic hole in other trait areas, according to Bowman. “We’ve had a lot of our commercial customers start out using our tests to select replacement heifers, whether they’re trying to figure out the top 25 percent to keep or the bottom 25 percent to cull,” Bowman explains. “Genomic profiles are wonderful tools to identify outliers in the herd, and as costs come down, they’re more feasible for commercial producers to use. I would use these tools to identify the ones that don’t fit your criteria,” Olson says. He sees most interest in these tools from producers who are more focused on the end product, ones who will own the cattle the longest. That describes much of Method Genetics customer base. Many of them retain ownership in their calves and market fed cattle to U.S. Premium Beef on a quality based grid. These are the kind of pioneering commercial producers who are starting to use DNA performance metrics and pedigree records to conduct their own in-herd genetic evaluation. “Producers are finally able to consolidate all of their historical data resources into one system, in order to generate selection tools for breeding decisions,” Bowman explains. In the case of Method Genetics, the population within the genetic evaluation includes cattle from both commercial and seedstock customers. The cattle are compared head to head. Both commercial and seedstock producers have the same selection indexes to use. “Commercial producers can hone in on where they want to improve, using the same tools as the seedstock producers in the system, rather than interpret what a value means in a different evaluation system,” Bowman explains. “We collect carcass data from the commercial producers. It goes into the genetic evaluation and helps build predictability for the seedstock in the evaluation. Bowman believes there will be more commercial producers tied more closely to their seedstock suppliers in the future, expanding opportunities for both. Another powerful benefit some

commercial producers are deriving from genomics, be it commercially available DNA profiles or Method Genetics genomic tests, revolve around parentage identification. “With these genomic tests and DNA profiles, you also have the ability

to match calves to specific sires in multi-sire pastures,” Bowman explains. That information has value on the production side of the equation, but also in marketing. With the parentage and related information, commercial producers

can offer bred heifers as a documented genetic package, for example. Often times, buyers will pay a premium for cattle with that kind of verification, both to reduce risk and to access subsequent marketing opportunities for themselves.

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Steady Prices—Soft Landing Cattle prices look similar to last year, as long as demand strength continues. By Wes Ishmael

Consumer beef demand, both domestic and international, continues underpinning cattle and beef prices at near-steady levels year over year, despite increasing production of beef and competing meats. “Many projections have 2019 prices similar to 2018. If that is realized, it will reflect stable overall demand that absorbs a likely 2 percent increase in commercial beef production,” says Glynn Tonsor, agricultural economist at Kansas State University. “The biggest risks to prices include adverse export developments, undesirable domestic macroeconomic developments, or a bearish supply surprise in the January Cattle Inventory report (more on these challenges below).” Likewise, Derrell Peel, Extension livestock marketing specialist at Oklahoma State University says, “In general, it’s steady as she goes for cattle prices. That’s predicated on demand staying as strong as it has been. “The U.S. economy has supported beef demand thus far, but recent stock market volatility highlights fragile macroeconomic conditions going forward. Rising interest rates and growing budget deficits will add to inflationary pressures and contribute to a stronger dollar. A rising dollar could add to export headwinds.” Barring an unexpected market shock, though, Peel expects seasonal tendencies to prevail in 2019. That means calf prices moving toward a peak in March or April. It means fed cattle prices doing so in the first quarter. In December, the Livestock Marketing Information Center projected calf prices for the first quarter of 2019 at $168-$172/cwt., according to Tonsor. Yearling prices were projected at $147$150 and fed prices at $118-$121. “These values are on par, or a bit stronger, than current deferred CME futures would suggest,” Tonsor said at the time. Beef production in 2018 was projected to be 3.3 percent more than the year before at a record 27.0 billion lbs. Peel says it’s forecast to grow another 1.5-2.0 percent this year to a record 27.5 billion lbs. For perspective, Peel explains beef production was about 3.4 billion lbs., or 14.2 percent more in 2018

than the recent low in 2015. Recent cow herd expansion, and more recently, the slowing rate of expansion mean more calves overall and fewer heifers retained as replacements. “There was a bigger calf crop in 2018 than in 2017, which means the pipeline stays full at least through 2019 and most of 2020. We’ll have a full pipeline of cattle coming at us,” Peel explains. Moreover, pork and poultry production is growing at the same time. That’s why international demand for U.S. beef and competing meats continues to gain importance. “Each of the major meats—beef, pork and poultry—are projected to reach record levels in 2018 and will combine to push total U.S meat production to a record level of 102.3 billion lbs., up 2.6 percent year over year,” Peel explained in December. “However, 2018 per capita meat consumption in the U.S. is projected at 218.7 lbs., up 1.0 percent year over year. The smaller increase in meat consumption compared to production is largely due to the net movement of meat offshore through meat exports.”

Stellar International Demand Continues U.S. beef exports shattered records in 2018. For January through October (latest data available), beef exports totaled 1.13 million metric tons (mt), which was 9 percent more than the previous year, while value grew by 17 percent to $6.92 billion. For beef muscle cuts only, exports increased 12 percent in volume (867,714 mt) and 19 percent in value ($6.19 billion). “Demand for U.S. beef continues to climb in nearly every region of the world, with annual records already falling in some markets,” says Dan Halstrom, U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) president and CEO. “Per-head export value will also easily set a new record in 2018, which illustrates the strong returns exports are delivering for cattle producers and for the entire supply chain.” For January through October, beef export value equated to $320.50 per head of fed slaughter, 15 percent more than a year earlier.


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Of course, there were plenty of trade issues heading through the end of the year. Although the U.S., Mexico and Canada agreed to a new trade pact to supersede NAFTA, each country had internal work to do before the agreement takes effect. Trade talks were in the beginning stages with Japan, which imports the most U.S. beef on a value basis. “Trade negotiations with Japan are critical for the U.S. pork and beef industries, as all major competitors in the Japanese market will soon benefit from significant tariff reductions,” Halstrom explained, in December. “USMEF, along with producers, exporters and other industry organizations submitted comments to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative

(USTR) underscoring the importance and urgency of these negotiations.”

China is a Wild Card Then, there was the smoldering trade spat between the U.S. and China. On the one hand, China imported relatively little beef from the U.S., at least directly, since access was renewed last year. Given the Chinese diet and import requirements, it could be years before that nation imports much U.S. beef, if ever. Instead, U.S. pork exports to China could help lift U.S. beef prices. China is the world’s largest pork producer and consumer. In August, African Swine Fever (ASF) was discovered in China’s hog population. It is a highly contagious viral disease; mortality rates can be as high as

100 percent. ASF poses no threat to humans. Keeping in mind that reliable Chinese statistics are hard to come by, analysts with the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD) at Iowa State University estimated that by late fall 200,000 hogs had been culled due to AFS. That’s from that

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Winter 2019

organization’s Agricultural Policy Review (World’s Largest Pork Producer in Crisis: China’s African Swine Fever Outbreak). “China accounts for about half of the world’s pork consumption. Ninety-seven percent of the pork that China consumes is produced domestically (authors’ calculation using data from the USDA PS&D database). Therefore, a relatively small shortage in China can cause a large increase in the demand for pork imports,” say authors of the CARD article. “Currently, the leading pork exporters to China include Canada, Germany, Spain, and Denmark. In the case of a large increase in China’s import demand, each country’s ability to supply pork to China will depend on the development of ASF in that country. Due to the recent tariff increases, pork products from the United States are not competitive in China. However, if ASF goes out of control in both China and Europe, there is a chance that China may import from the United States despite the high tariff.” Or, as Tonsor explains, additional pork imports to China will likely come first from countries that compete with the U.S. in the international market. Potentially, that could open up more export opportunities for U.S. pork to other countries. “This would still help elevate U.S. pork prices,” Tonsor explains. “Higher domestic pork prices are typically believed to support domestic beef demand via consumer substitution effects. While I concur with this, the magnitude of this substitution effect appears to be weakening over time as found in our most recent determinants study.” The checkoff-funded study—“Assessing Beef Demand Determinants”—found that a 10 percent increase in pork price increased Choice beef demand by 0.49 percent over a period of 1995 to 2017. The effect was 1.4 percent for the time period of 1970 to 1994. Of course, none of this considers the growing impact of tariffs and counter-tariffs assessed by the U.S. and China on one another. “The uncertain global trade situation continues to hang over beef and other agricultural markets,” Peel


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explains. “There is general agreement that trade disruptions will likely reduce U.S. and global macroeconomic growth in 2019. While the beef industry has avoided most of the direct tariff impacts thus far, indirect tariff impacts will continue to grow unless the trade situation is resolved. Consumers will see growing tariff impacts that may impact consumer spending and beef demand. Tariff-driven price increases could push consumers to cheap and abundant pork and poultry at the expense of beef demand.”

Cow Herd Nearing Peak When the USDA Cattle report is published at the end of January, Peel expects it to reflect steady beef cow numbers, perhaps 0.5-1.0 percent more than a year earlier at about 31.9 million head. “This may be the cyclical peak in herd inventory or very close to it,” Peel says. “From the 2014 low of 29.1 million head, this cyclical expansion has increased the beef cow herd by 2.8 million head or 9.6 percent over five years. The last full cyclical herd expansion occurred in 1990-1996 resulting in an 8.8 percent herd expansion in six years.” Moreover, Peel explains beef cow herd dynamics are finally returning to normal, following the unprecedented

market forces that drove volatility during the past decade. That included drought-induced herd liquidation (2011-2013) that took more cows out of production than would otherwise be expected, followed by the recent rapid expansion. For instance, Peel says he projects heifer retention in 2019 at 18.018.5 percent, still above average but returning closer to normal. Likewise, cow culling—annual beef cow slaughter as a percentage of the Jan. 1 beef cow inventory—in 2018 looked to be about 9.7 percent, close to the long-term average. “I think we’re reaching a plateau that can be sustained in 2019 and perhaps beyond,” Peel says. If so, he explains, cyclically speaking, the stage is set for a soft landing, which is less than common. Usually, expansion and liquidation—minus drought effects— swing too far. “Internally, beef is in good shape. Things are in balance; nothing is out of whack,” he says. Consequently, Peel saw no reason at the end of the year for cow-calf producers to alter any of their plans. But, he added, “I’d watch the external environment and have a contingency plan in case you need to pull back relatively quickly.”

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Achieving a Successful Calving Season Managing all the variables to produce a live calf.

By Randall K. Spare, DVM

The first of the year is upon us. Fall cow work is nearly done, yet we find ourselves still palpating cows to determine pregnancy status. With ranchers having different goals, resources and marketing plans, fall cow work can be spread out over several months in the fall, winter and early spring. As a veterinary clinic, we start diagnosing pregnancy in June and continue through December and January for spring calving cow herds. This is a great time of year, as we have the opportunity to firsthand observe many operations. We learn so much about each operation—their management skills, facilities and labor—as we listen. Diagnosing pregnancy for a ranch is an extremely valuable tool. I often ask veterinary students, what percent of incorrect diagnosis is okay? The answer should be ZERO. As a veterinarian, a pregnancy diagnosis is so important that I must be correct every time. A palpation exercise tells us if the cow is pregnant and how far along the pregnancy is on that day. Like a balance sheet for a business, palpating for pregnancy gives us an idea of what is happening on that day. We understand we cannot predict and guarantee the cow will calve. At times we will get a comment like, “Hey Doc, that cow you called pregnant, well, she did not calve.” As a veterinarian, I can either put my head down and wonder if he was right, since he insinuates that I was not accurate in my pregnancy diagnosis, or I can be sure she was pregnant and she lost the pregnancy sometime after palpating. When there is a loss of pregnancy from conception to the expected calving, this is described as pregnancy wastage or abortion. This can happen any time after conception and, if early enough, the producer is never aware. However, when there is a fetus expelled or fetal membranes present

prior to the due date, there often is a cause for concern. Pregnancy wastage or abortion is difficult to diagnose. Often, the diagnosis involves ruling out the preventable causes such as nutrition, infection or toxicity. Often, several different samples are needed before a definitive diagnosis is made. Diagnosing abortion can appear unrewarding. When choosing the best samples and the testing procedures to select for the problem, it is important to know we gain as much

information by knowing what it is not, as having a specific etiology or cause. It is important to ask your veterinarian what causes have been ruled out as well as possible rule outs still on the table. A common sense, methodical approach to diagnosing pregnancy loss is important. This can only be done when accurate records are available. The starting point would be the number of cows exposed to bulls, the length of the breeding season, breech-

es of biosecurity during the breeding season, number of cows pregnant, number live calves born and the distribution of calving. Each are a point in time in which the loss of pregnancy has a limited number of causes. The most difficult scenario to diagnose is after calving season when the client learns there is less than 80 percent calf crop of those cows exposed to a bull. At this time, we can only be reactionary in planning to prevent for the following year. Of the confirmed causes of abortion at the Kansas State University Diagnostic Laboratory in 2018, IBR (infectious bovine rhinotracheitis), neospora, BVD (bovine virus diarrhea) and anaplasmosis are the leading causes of infectious abortions. Nitrate exposure continues to be the leading

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cause of toxic abortions. Nutritional deficiencies of Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and trace minerals are diagnosed in two percent of the cases. Each of these causes can be the sole initiator of abortion. However, in most instances there is a combination of infectious exposure with a nutrient deficient period during gestation. As a reminder at the beginning of calving season, invariably most ranches will have a cow that calves early within the month of the due date. Clients often ask if they need to bring the cow, the fetus, or the placenta to us for testing. In our practice area, we often will encourage producers to start the process of looking for a cause when there is more than one percent loss of fetus. Each producer needs to keep their veterinarian informed and ask for

help at whatever threshold they, as a team, deem is greater than acceptable. The challenges of diagnosing pregnancy loss are difficult and sometimes convoluted. Therefore, the protocol for diagnosing may be different for each operation. It is important to have a veterinarian involved that understands the geography, nutritional requirements, health management and the peculiar challenges of the area. Calving season will bring the fruition of nine months of a successful gestation. A successful calving season determined by a high percentage of cows calved is one of the most important links in the sustainability chain for every cow-calf operation. A live calf is the product of sound management, nutrition, herd health and just a little luck from Mother Nature.

Grid Marketing, Ranch View By Jera Pipkin

Hitting a target takes practice, careful calibrations, attempts and recalibrations over time. Cow-calf producers make decisions every day, but how many of those relate to the calves’ ability to realize their potential and hit a high quality beef target? At the Certified Angus Beef ® (CAB®) brand’s Feeding Quality Forum this past summer in Sioux City, Iowa, the brand’s own beef cattle specialist, Paul Dykstra, summarized the rancher’s dilemma. “You and I as cow-calf producers unhook ourselves from our product Paul Dykstra, Certified Angus Beef beef cattle specialist

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RE

$W

top 25%

top 1%

$B

.71 80.21 157.61 top 15%

Dam’s Prod WR 5@105

Mill Brae Conf Plus 8261

Confidence Plus X In Focus • 19235801

CED

BW

WW

YW

top 20%

top 25%

top 10%

top 4%

10

.2

70

128

SC

.70

Milk Marb

26

1.11

top 4%

RE

$W

$B

.55 71.39 164.16 top 5%

top 10%

Dam’s Prod WR 1@117

Dam’s Prod WR 3@110

Brae Conf Plus 8044 Brae Payweight 8165 Mill MillPayweight Confidence Plus X Identity • 19235768 X Identity • 19235615 CED

4

BW

1.9

WW

YW

top 2%

top 1%

78

141

SC

.59

Milk Marb

RE

$W

top 10%

top 10%

top 1%

32

.75

top 25%

$B

.93 83.14 194.22 top 1%

CED

9

BW

.6

WW

YW

top 10%

top 4%

68

127

SC

Milk Marb

.69

43

top 1%

.80

top 20%

Dam’s Prod WR 2@103

RE

$W

$B

.34 87.58167.56 top 1%

top 10%

Dam’s Prod WR 2@96

Mill Brae Bounty F819 Brae Niagara 8096 Mill Niagara X Endurance • 19235692 Bounty X Upgrade • 3462483 CED

3

BW

2.2

WW

YW

top 1%

top 1%

81

148

SC

.82

Milk Marb

26

.51

RE

$W

top 15%

top 3%

$B

.79 74.63 181.72 top 2%

CED

9.3

BW

1.6

WW

79

top 10%

YW

MCE Milk Marb

123.7 4.5 top 10%

24.6

EPDs current as of 12/21/18

140 Angus Bulls (100+ HEIFER BULLS) 15 SimAngus Bulls

150 Angus Heifers 25 SimAngus Heifers

.23

RE

TI

top 10%

top 20%

API

.92 76.0 127.6

very early in the life cycle of that animal,” he said. “It’s not that we don’t care about what happens to our calves as they go on, or that they don’t have value to the next owner. It’s the fact that we don’t ever learn about that.” Except for the small percentage of herd operators who retain ownership through finishing and harvest. The rest naturally move on to the next production season, the next calf crop. But in the last 10 to 15 years, the average calf sold has carried increasingly greater potential to hit the Choice, CAB and Prime targets. That’s partly because the market incentivized such genetic potential through grid marketing, Dykstra said. That type of marketing greatly increased in those years, too, he said, reviewing the basics. Carcasses with more marbling and a lower yield grade earn the highest premium, while those with the least marbling and most external fat (higher yield grade) stand the greatest discounts. “The landscape has changed in marketing cattle,” Dykstra said. “The fact, and how short of a timeframe and how dramatically it has occurred is important for us to recognize.” It suggests that calves capable of topping a market should fit that later grid market. Technology has affected the calf and cattle markets at every level. From DNA testing on the ranch to feeding distiller’s grains for better feedlot performance to camera grading in packing plants, improvements have driven an increase in carcass quality. Carcasses accepted for CAB grew from 2.5 million to 4.5 million in a decade, with new supply records toppling every few weeks and nearly every month. Rapid increases in supply typically mean lower premiums, but the

Continued on page 28 ________________________________________

page 20

Winter 2019


F&R Livestock Resource page 21


Market for Fake Meat is Real but Small By Wes Ishmael

Stomach-churning as it is to meat lovers and those who favor authenticity, fake meat products are catching the buying attention of at least a few consumers. In fact, according to a study released by Research and Markets (R&M) this summer, the global meat substitute market size was valued at $4,175 million in 2017, and is expected to reach $7,549 million by 2025. That would make for a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.7 percent from 2018 to 2025. “The alternative protein category is sure to grow over the next decade as global protein demand expands, allowing pathways for more diversified protein products,” according to a report from CoBank earlier this year (Lab-Grown Cultured Meat-A Long Road to Market Acceptance). “Euromonitor International projects sales of meat substitutes to rise steadily to $863 million in 2021, representing roughly 17 percent growth compared to 2017 estimates. These figures are dwarfed in comparison to the current retail market size of $49 billion in sales for the entire meat and poultry category in the U.S.” Although fake meat products cultured from animal cells dominate recent headlines, fake meat products built with plant protein dominate the market currently. “The meat substitute market by product type comprises products prepared from tofu, tempeh, textured vegetable protein, seitan, quorn, and other plantbased sources,” according to the R&M report. “Textured vegetable protein (TVP)-based meat substitutes occupied the largest market share of 35.8 percent in 2017 as it is the basic ingredient in most of the soy-based meat substitute products. In terms of growth, seitan-based meat substitutes are projected to exhibit an impressive CAGR of 9.4 percent, owing to increase in adoption in the food service industry.” Lots of that was Greek to me, too. For the record: tofu—also known as bean curd—is made from coagulated soymilk; tempeh is made from fermented soybeans; sietan is wheat gluten; quorn is a mycoprotein fermented from fungus. Best as I can tell, rather than an umbrella encompassing those other products, TVP—also known as soymeat—is a product unto itself, made from defatted soy flour. How’s your appetite now?

Meat by Any Other Name Whether built from plant protein or cultured from animal cells, using the page 22

Winter 2019

term ‘meat’ is misleading, of course. Just like using the term ‘milk’ when describing liquid alternatives derived from soybeans, almonds and all of the rest. Adding to confusion is the fact that these terms have been attached to other things previously, without ridicule. For instance, I don’t remember ever hearing anyone raise a fuss about coconut milk or digging the meat out of a walnut. Of course, no one was portraying coconut juice as a replacement for milk. No one in their right mind would confuse nuts with actual meat.

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So, plenty of labeling battles will be fought along the way. That’s before considering products cultured from animal cells, which remain unavailable commercially. “A number of U.S. cell-cultured meat companies are developing products that some believe could be sold within three years in certain markets and widely

available in ten years,” according to a Congressional Research Service report (Regulation of Cell-cultured Meat) published in October. That same report notes that cell-cultured meat is also known as lab-grown meat, clean meat, in vitro meat, imitation meat, synthetic meat, and fake meat. In the meantime, the battle over governmental regulation of cell-cultured meat is just getting started. In November, agreement was reached for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to share the responsibility of regulatory oversight. “FDA oversees cell collection, cell banks, and cell growth and differentiation. A transition from FDA to USDA oversight will occur during the cell

harvest stage, according to a USDA statement. “USDA will then oversee the production and labeling of food products derived from the cells of livestock and poultry.”

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Leading up to the decision, Jennifer Houston, president-elect of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) explained, “Ensuring labgrown fake meat products are subject to strong, daily inspection by USDA’s trained professionals is essential.” Houston and Mark Dopp, senior vice president of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs for the North American Meat Institute (NAMI) made comments about oversight during a two-day meeting this past fall, hosted by the USDA and FDA. The meeting—Use of Animal Cell Culture Technology to Develop Products Derived from Livestock and Poultry— included discussions about the safety and marketing of cell-based fake meat, as well as which agency will ultimately have regulatory control. “That the inspection system administered by the Food Safety Inspection Service (USDA-FSIS) is more rigorous than the one administered by FDA is undeniable. Administration officials have said as much,” Dopp explained “I am baffled why those who advocate that FDA should have primary jurisdiction over cell-based meat products want to deny those companies the benefits of FSIS inspection.” FSIS oversight includes the USDA mark of inspection, providing consumer confidence that a product has been deemed wholesome by the agency. Dopp also detailed the importance and benefits of USDA’s label approval process, which protects companies from frivolous lawsuits and gives consumers confidence that products are accurately labeled and not represented to be something they are not. “USDA can be trusted to enforce truthful, transparent labeling of the products under its jurisdiction,” explained Kevin Kester, NCBA president. “Beef producers welcome competition, but product labels and marketing must be based on sound science, not the misleading claims of anti-animal agriculture activists.”

Fake Meat Timeline “It’s clear by the growth in plant-based F&R Livestock Resource page 23


protein case shipments to foodservice and restaurant operators that this category has mainstreamed beyond those who choose a meatless diet,” explained David Portalatin, industry advisor for NPD’s Food Sector, earlier this year. According to NPD research, 14 percent of U.S. consumers, which translates to over 43 million consumers, regularly use plant-based alternatives such as almond milk, tofu, and veggie burgers, and 86 percent of these consumers do not consider themselves vegan or vegetarian. Beef alternatives make up 44 percent of the plant-based categories being shipped to independent and micro-chain restaurant operators (U.S.) and are the primary contributor to the total category’s growth, according to NPD. Burgers are the largest beef alternative category but ball products, like meatless meatballs, used as ingredients have outpaced burgers and all other plant-based protein formats in terms of growth. Also, keep in mind some of the household names that are already producing alternative meat products and/ or have investments in other companies that are producing or intend to produce these products. They include Cargill (Memphis Meats), Tyson (Beyond Meat and Memphis Meats) and Kellogg (Morningstar Farms).

Other Highlights From the CoBank Report • The competitive impact of cultured meat on traditional pork, beef and poultry demand is expected to be minimal. • Cultured meat developers are challenged by the need to compete head-to-head with traditional meat offerings on cost and quality. Initial consumer surveys also reflect the acceptance hurdles that must be cleared. • Cultured meat could appear in restaurants and specialty stores in three to five years, and in grocery stores in five to eight years.

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page 24

Winter 2019


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18th Annual Thursday, March 14, 2019 • 12:30 PM 4291 McDowell Creek Road • Manhattan, KS

SELLING APPROX. 170 LOTS, INCLUDING: 75 18-Mo. Old Bulls • 10 14-Mo. Old Bulls 8 Donor Cows • 30 Bred Heifers 21 Spring Pairs (AI Bred / Will Calve Jan-March) 12 Embryos • 4 Rare Semen Packages Visit www.bjangus.com for photos and video of our sale offering.

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page 26

Winter 2019

BJ 4.5x12.875 4c-F&R.indd 1

12/17/18 3:58 PM

Selling sons of Churchill Stud 3134A

Selling sons of KCF Bennett Fortress

SPRINGHILL HEREFORDS 1128 Hwy 9 • Blue Rapids, KS Dave Cell: 785-556-0124 Dan Cell: 785-562-6685

ALCOVE CATTLE CO. 312 Alcove Dr. • Blue Rapids, KS Phone/Fax: 785-363-7456 Ken Cell: 785-268-0898


Just For Fun by Ted Foulkes

Continued from page 20 _____________________________________

Choice-Select spread has run steady to higher, even as the supply of Select fell dramatically. “If we’re going to get paid for CAB,

we first get paid on the Choice-Select spread above plant average, and then we add on top the CAB premium,” Dykstra said. Showing the trends that go against expectations, he added, “The price only

gets stronger as we moved into more supply—it doesn’t get weaker.” He showed examples of steers that may look very similar but by virtue of feed efficiency, carcass quality and

other performance factors, command a value difference of $131 per head. “We need to figure out a way to get those dollars and cents back into the system,” Dykstra said, suggesting a need for more documentation and perhaps more attention to “terminal” trait selection in the cow herd. “Even in herds that keep replacement heifers, 80 percent to 85 percent of the calves are terminal,” he pointed out. Studies show more than 92 percent of eligible cattle that failed to qualify for CAB fell out for lack of marbling, while balanced selection to include that trait has almost no impact on other traits. Looking at the bigger picture, he noted the effect of seasonality in markets, showing predictable spikes in the Choice-Select spread, especially in late spring. “These last two springs, we saw a $20 Choice-Select spread there in April and May,” he said. “If we deliver a 500 pound calf in October to the feedyard, it’s probably not coming out in April, May or June. It’s probably coming out in July when the carcass quality price spreads are seasonally narrower.” You can’t always change to better fit a market, “but if we want to capture the value we’re breeding into our cattle, we need to think about it.”

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Average Marbling in the top 1% Average DMI in the top 10% Average $EN in the top 15%

Profitability Marb Carcass Feed Intake $En

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page 28

Winter 2019

2335 10th Rd Lorraine, KS 67459

EST 1932


OVER 500 Angus, Gelbvieh & Balancer Bulls will sell in Seedstock Plus Sales this spring! Arkansas Bull & Female Sale

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February 23, 2019 Kingsville Livestock, Kingsville, MO Selling 150 - 18 month old bulls! ALL BLACK!

CALL TOLL FREE FOR YOUR CATALOG TODAY 877-486-1160 email: john@seedstockplus.com

South Missouri Bull Sale

March 23, 2019 Joplin Regional Stockyards, Carthage, MO Selling 200 - 18 month old & yearling bulls! ALL BLACK!

Hope Livestock, Hope, AR March 2, 2019 80 - 2 year old & 18 month old bulls! Large selection of Seedstock Plus Influence females! Breds, Pairs & Opens!

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• Guaranteed Sight-Unseen Purchases! Let us help you find the bull to fit your program & needs! • Free Trucking on every bull! No fine print! • The best disposition & soundness sort! • Extensive Data & Genomic EPDs! • All Bulls Are Semen & Trich Tested! • Over 200 RFI tested bulls sell in these sales! • Videos of sale bulls on website the week before the sale! www.seedstockplus.com.

F&R Livestock Resource page 29


Farmers & Ranchers Livestock Commission Salina, Kansas

Spring Spectacular Catalog Horse Sale May 18, 2019 • 10 AM Ranch Horse Competition Friday, May 17 (Catalog Horses Only) More Upcoming Spring Special Sales Cow Sales (Tuesdays) January 15 12 noon February 19 11:00 a.m. March 19 11:00 a.m. April 16 11:00 a.m. May 7 11 a.m.

Roping & Performance Preview Friday, May 17, 1 PM and Saturday, May 18, 7:30 AM Selling 300 Horses Only! 7% Commission • $20 Pass Out Fee • $30 Substitution Fee 72-Hour Soundness Guarantee Catalog closes March 1 or first 300 horses!

2014 Red Dun Gelding grandson of Three Dee Skyline

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Weaned/Vaccinated Sales (Tuesdays) January 8 12 noon February 5 11:00 a.m.

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Special Bull Sales

Don Johnson Angus Bull Sale Monday, March 4 • 6 p.m.

New Frontier Bucking Bull Sale Saturday, March 23 • 11 a.m.

2013 Gray gelding by Sizzle Eyed

HPI eligible, gentle ranch horse that’s been used outside a bunch, ropes both ends.

For more information, contact: Farmers & Ranchers • 785-825-0211 Mike Samples • 785-826-7884 | Kyle Elwood • 785-493-2901 Visit our Website: www.FandRLive.com

page 30

Winter 2019


8870 US Highway 87 E, San Antonio, TX 78263 P.O. Box 809, Adkins, TX 78101 info@gobrangus.com | 210.696.8231

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F&R Livestock Resource page 31


Near the Pinnacle of Beef Quality Angus Value Discovery Contest winners named. By Laura Conaway and Nicole Lane Erceg

It takes a powerful start and decades of focus to get harvest groups that regularly qualify 100 percent for the Certified Angus Beef ® (CAB®) brand. What about 97.7 percent at CAB Prime brand and that one steer “only” hitting the traditional premium Choice CAB mark? Not too good to be true, that’s just the mark of a champion. To be precise, it’s the champion pen of 40 enrolled in the 2018 Angus Value Discovery

Contest (AVDC), produced by Jack and Bill Boyer, Boyer Brothers Angus, Perryville, Missouri. Nominated by Gardiner Angus Ranch, Ashland, Kansas, their seedstock supplier of more than 40 years, the sons of a Detroit car factory worker took up farming in Missouri’s Mississippi Valley in the early 1970s. “It just kind of grew on us, being out in the fresh air, the trees, the green grass,” Bill says. Corn, soybeans and

Post Rock Cattle Co.

Bill and Jack Boyer, Boyer Brothers Angus, Perryville, Missouri.

Cowman’s Kind Bull and Female Sale February 23, 2019

Angus cattle pay their way. The brothers credit U.S. Premium Beef for showing them how good their cattle were in the 1990s, and how they could make them better, always finishing calves from their 300-cow herd at home.

at the ranch, Barnard, Kansas

200 Lots Sell

120 Gelbvieh and Balancer Bulls 80 Gelbvieh And Balancer Females Every 6 year old female sells

CED 13

BW 1.0

WW 66

YW 95

MK 15

TM 48

CEM YG 8 -0.15

CW 22

REA 0.46

MB FPI EPI 0.13 69.77 102.39

VLK Young Gun C503 Homozygous Black Homozygous Polled Balancer The YOUNG GUN sire group was highly sought after and accepted last year and he will have the largest sire group this year. Expect more of the same with lots of sturdy built sons with muscle and eye appeal from this former Reserve National Champion.

CED 10

BW 2.2

WW 91

YW 136

MK 4

TM 50

CEM 5

YG CW -0.05 26

CED 9

BW 1.7

WW 72

YW 114

MK 28

TM 64

CEM YG 6 -0.11

REA 0.36

MB FPI EPI 0.61 93.30 159.22

REA 0.22

MB FPI EPI 0.12 72.72 150.56

EGL Game Changer D136 Homozygous Black Homozygous Polled Balancer A new and one of the most exciting sire groups ever at Post Rock are the GAME CHANGERS. He combines top 1% WW and YW growth epds with top 10% Marbling. His progeny are true beef bulls with tremendous volume and muscle .

CED 14

BW 1.5

WW 65

YW 92

MK 17

TM 50

CEM YG 8 -0.33

CW 21

REA 0.73

MB FPI 0.38 75.80

EPI 64.44

TOG ARMSTRONG 530D ET Homozygous Black Homozygous Polled Purebred Over 30 Purebred bulls sell including Herd Bulls with breed impacting significance like last years high seller ARMSTRONG that sold to ABS Global. His donor dam 7309T, “The Carcass Cow” has over 10 sons from 4 different sire groups both Purebred and Balancer to choose from.

3041 E Hwy 284, Barnard, KS Bill Clark 785-792-6244 Leland Clark 785-392-0888 Fax: 785-792-6250 email: prcc@twinvalley.net

“Where calving ease, performance and eye appeal come together”

page 32

Winter 2019

CW 34

DCSF POST ROCK WILMA 294Z8 2018 high selling donor to Mathews Farms represents the quality of the females that sell as we annually offer every sound 6 year old each year. This year her ET sons by the Futurity champion Gravity and Reserve National champion VLK Young Gun are sure to be sale highlight.

“We’ve been very fortunate, just making good decisions on the bulls and doing things ourselves,” Bill says. To avoid yield grade (YG) 4s, which all but 23 percent of the pen did, Jack says they select bulls with expected progeny differences (EPDs) negative for back fat. They like docility scores in the 30s and marbling EPDs in the 0.80s, but also look at ribeyes and “how they did on feed.” With carcass data in hand, they find the cows that produce Prime calves and aim to keep their heifers for replacements. When loads began to hit 90 percent Prime, Bill says, “We thought, well, we gotta do a little better.” That’s what they’re doing, although technically still waiting for that 100 percent Prime load. “If you want to really increase demand for beef, you have to increase the quality of beef you produce,” Jack says. “We learned right off that Angus has the best carcass quality of any breed. The consumer has to have an enjoyable eating experience when he sits down and eats beef. If he does he’ll want more of it.” To the northwest 400 miles or more, another set of brothers gave the Boyers a run for their money. Aaron and Darin Georg run a


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Leader Sons Sell!

R Leader 6964 - REG #43500058 CE BW WW YW SC SCF 11.5 1.6 71 113 1.5 17.1

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Darin and Aaron Georg, Sabetha, Kansas.

purebred commercial Angus herd of 500 near Sabetha, Kansas. Raising cattle with the end in mind has been their focus since the early 1990s, and it lifted them to the reserve champion

level in the 2018 AVDC. The Georgs have been finishing their own cattle on the farm for more than 20 years. “We select for carcass merit

because that’s where the value is,” Aaron says. Their reserve champion pen achieved 97.6 percent CAB (all but one), including 61.9 percent CAB

Director of Breed Improvement. With more Angus influenced cattle qualifying for the Certified Angus Beef ® brand than ever before, it’s clear that the Angus bull has become America’s bull. He sires calving ease, growth and superior marbling. He works well in any environment, and on any cow, regardless of breed. Make sure that America’s bull serves as your Director of Breed Improvement.

brand Prime. What made their pen a close second was the fact that only one of the 42 head earned a YG 4 discount, with no YG 5s. “A Choice, YG 3 carcass is par for the course,” Darin says. “We’ve got to consistently do better than that.” Carcass data is a key indicator of performance for their herd. They regularly see loads grade 30 percent Prime or better as they target improved growth and efficiency. They watch the numbers closely and work to see ever fewer YG 4s with continued increases in Prime on their closeouts. “If you have cattle that can perform, we believe it’s in our best interest to retain them and capture the value,” Darin says. For those interested in retained ownership, the brothers say stay the course and cull deep. It’s an end goal their family has been targeting for decades and are justifiably proud of the progress so far. Their seedstock supplier is Keith Taliaferro’s T Bar T Angus Ranch at nearby Effingham, Kansas. The first year of the AVDC drew 27 nominations by nine suppliers on 1,914 finished cattle from across the country. Its second year managed only 929 head in 13 entries, although overall quality was greater.

Angus. America’s breed. Go to www.Angus.org/businessbreed to learn more.

Contest winners earned trips to the National Angus Convention, in Columbus, Ohio, Nov. 4-7, 2018, where they received the awards. The Boyer’s grand champion pen merited $2,000 in credit toward their next bull purchase with Gardiner Angus Ranch, while the Georgs earned a $1000 credit to spend with T Bar T Angus Ranch. There are no plans to continue the AVDC, but all Angus producers are encouraged to take stock of the quality in their herds, to monitor, measure and improve carcass merit for greater profit and growing consumer demand for beef. “As CAB acceptance rates continue to climb, we know producers have to remain focused just to stay above average,” says production brand manager Kara Lee. “The Angus Value Discovery Contest has been a great opportunity to showcase those who have done that in a very big way, with the payoff to show for it.” page 36

Winter 2019


K-STATE: the Place to be MARCH 1 Plan to attend these events hosted annually in Manhattan the first Friday of March.

SHARING

Knowledge

CONTINUING the

Legacy

106th Cattlemen’s Day

42nd Annual Sale

8 a.m. Trade Show • 10 a.m. Program

4 p.m. CST

Weber Hall, Manhattan, KS

Stanley Stout Center, Manhattan, KS SELLING: 34 FEED-EFFICIENCY TESTED BULLS 20 Angus, 8 Simmental and 6 Hereford

25 REGISTERED FEMALES 10 Spring Cows and 15 Fall-Bred Cows

20 COMMERCIAL HEIFERS 5 AQHA RANCH PERFORMANCE HORSES

Join us at 8 a.m. for refreshments, educational exhibits and a commercial trade show. The program begins at 10 a.m. Lunch featuring smoked brisket and Cajunspiced catfish will be sponsored by commercial exhibitors and U.S. Premium Beef. The afternoon sessions will feature K-State faculty and industry presentations in Weber Hall on an array of topics continuing the morning’s theme.

For a full schedule and to register visit www.asi.k-state.edu/ cattlemensday or call 785-532-1267

As a department, we take great pride in our university, our cattle and especially our students. For four decades, our commitment to our customers has been to provide cattle that are profitable in a variety of situations. This year’s offering was designed with that commitment in mind. Utilizing the latest technology, including genomic testing and measuring individual feed intake, we have sought to build cattle that perform in a wide range of management and environmental conditions.

KANSAS STATE UNIVERSITY PUREBRED BEEF UNIT 2200 Denison Avenue • Manhattan, KS 66502

www.asi.ksu.edu/bullsale Shane Werk, KSU PBU Manager • 785.565.1881 Dr. Bob Weaber, Faculty Advisor • 785.477.1287 Dr. Dave Nichols, Faculty Advisor • 785.532.1239

For a sale book, call 785.532.6127 or email bullsale@ksu.edu F&R Livestock Resource page 37


OVERMILLER GELBVIEH & RED ANGUS February 16, 2019 at the Ranch north of Smith Center, KS

**This bull will have 2 maternal brothers selling. We will use both of his brothers to sell in our own herd, via AI.

**One of the largest groups of red Balancers you will find, also Red Gelbviehs ** Several 1/2 brothers to this Balancer will sell.

**Powerful Red Angus bulls backed by strong maternal families

**Red Balancers will sell sired by a maternal brother to the Red Angus bull on the top left.

**Several bull suitable for heifers

Selling:

50 ~ Red Angus Bulls (12-18 mo. old) 35 ~ Gelbvieh/Balancer Bulls

OVERMILLER Red Angus & Gelbvieh

Kelly & Risa Brent & Brittany Roger & Norma 785-389-3522 785-389-1959 785-389-6281 4062 O Road Smith Center, KS 66967 www.overmiller.com

(12-18 mo. old)

60 ~ Commercial open heifers Red & Black

**This is one of the Deep bodied stout Blk Balancers that sell **The quality runs extra deep in our black Balancers this year

Can your bull get more than half your cows PREGNANT on the first day of breeding season? He can’t but,

WE CAN! Contact Select Sires today to:

• Increase Pregnancy Rates

Give your females more chances to conceive.

• Increase Weaning Weights Early-born calves are heavier at weaning.

Southeast Select Sires Phone: (931) 489-2020 • www.southeastselectsires.com Rick Mix: (620) 224-9423 Shawn Roy: (785) 737-3107 Ryan Bodenhausen: (785) 221-3284 Lucky Keller: (620) 770-6241 Matt Caldwell: (913) 755-1105

page 38

Winter 2019

• Use Predictable Genetics High accuracy bulls allow you to hit you target.

• Improve Uniformity

It’s Time to A.I.

Same age, weight and color calves are worth more.

Increase Cow Productivity

Early-born heifer have higher lifetime profitability.


Angus with a heritage since Nineteen Hundred

Reg: 19289761

Reg: 19289743

Capitalist 316 x Confidence Son

Reg: 19158552

Capitalist 316 x Apollo Son

Reg: 19150648

Reg: 19292678 Gun Powder x Impression Son

Reg: 19298909 Remedy x Resource Son

Sensation x Upward Son

Cowboy Up x O’Reilly Son

Reg: 19292734

Reg: 19299193

Reg: 18809661

Playbook x Big E Daughter

Discovery x 2617 Daughter with Fortress Heifer Calf

First Reaction X Bismark : 3308 Daughter

ANNUAL ANGUS PRODUCTION SALE

SATURDAY, MARCH 2ND, 2019 • HIGH NOON • OLSBURG, KS This is the most explosive set of bulls and females to ever be offered at Laflin Ranch! CALVING EASE

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ELITE EPD PROFILES

Selling 100 Herd Bulls, 50 Fancy Females, 9 Big Time Junior Show Heifer Prospects, Halter Broke and Ready to Go! Fall Pairs, Bred Heifers, Bred Cows, Donor Prospects and Embryos. R.D.785-587-5852, Barb 785-468-3529 Look for Sale Videos and Sale Book online at www.LAFLINRANCH.com

F&R Livestock Resource page 39


That Nerve There Editor’s Note: Hooter’s ability to entertain and remind us not to take ourselves so seriously has been a welcome respite for decades. Welcome to the latest episode of Hooter McCormick’s misadventures. When the doctor came in, Hooter was in the process of attaching another blown-up rubber glove to the plastic skeleton standing in the corner. Hooter looked at him defiantly, daring him to say something about the latex udders. “Well Hooter, the nurse tells me your blood pressure is higher than we’d like to see,” said Dr. Nathaniel Knippleton, scanning his clipboard and motioning for Hooter to take a seat on the examination table. “Do you doubt it?” said Hooter, raising his voice. “The appointment was scheduled for 10 a.m. I showed up 10 minutes ahead of time, figured it was the courteous thing to do. I finally got in to see your nurse 30 minutes ago. Since then, me and Oscar here have just been hanging out and having a blue-eyed ball. What time you got?” “Hooter, we’ve gone down this road in the past. You know…”

“Humor me, Doc. What time is it?” “Just to speed this along it’s 11:35.” “By my math, that’s more than an hour and a half later than my appontment time. If I had shown up about now for my 10:00 appointment, how likely is it I’d get in to see you today?” “Hooter, that’s not the point…” “That’s exactly the point. You make me come in here, just so I can get you to keep filling the prescription you yourself gave me, keep me waiting this long, then have the audacity to reckon how my blood pressure is higher than it needs to be.” “Hooter you haven’t been in here for three years. I can’t just keep issuing you medicine without monitoring your health. A lot can change in that period of time.” “I don’t know,” grumped Hooter. “So far, this is exactly the way I remember it being the last time I was here.” All through the tirade, the good doctor was busy peering into Hooter’s ears, taking his pulse and studying the charts. “Are we still using that spit tobacco, Hooter?” “No, WE are not, but I am,” Hooter growled.

Trust Built with Consistency Check out our Pen of Three Bulls at the NWSS! • Below breed average for birthweight • Stout, sound, full of muscle • Sired by our main herd sire, H Full Throttle 5073 ET. Sires calves with extra pigment, great hip and hind leg plus added performance. He also ranks in top 15% for SCF and top 25% for BMI$ and BII$.

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page 40

Winter 2019

Humor “You know what I meant. And, if memory serves, you told me last time you were in that you were considering giving it up.” “I did.” “Give it up? “No, considered it.” By now, Dr. Knippleton was listening to Hooter’s internal thumping and gurgling via stethoscope. I’m not going to harp on the subject, Hooter, but you really should think about quitting. Even at your age the body can still do remarkable things to heal any damage that has been caused. “At my age!” sputtered Hooter as the doctor tried to wedge a tongue depressor in his mouth. Hooter pushed his hand away. “If my life was a flag race, I’d barely be past the first barrel…” “That definitely is not the point. You know very well what I mean.” “I’ll consider it,” said Hooter, folding his arms and glaring at the doctor. They both knew better. Satisfied with the interior of Hooter’s mouth, the doctor motioned for Hooter to take off his shirt. He scanned his charts again. With a wry smile,w “Well, I see we’ve put on some weight since

you were here last.” “WE don’t doubt that, either,” said Hooter. He started digging into his pockets, pulling out loose change, his pocketknife; spare 30-30 shell, pliers, etc. “What are you doing?” wondered Knippleton. “Like I said, Doc, your nurse wouldn’t even let me unload my pockets before she took my weight. So, I don’t doubt it looks like I gained weight. If I figured shrink like you weigh people I wouldn’t have any customers left.” “She would have weighed you the same way before.” “I didn’t used to carry near this much stuff,” said Hooter. The doctor began to poke and prod Hooter’s mid-section. “Tell me if any of this hurts…Speaking of shrink, I’ve been meaning to call you. It sounds like this may be an excellent time to find me a pen of cattle to feed again.” “Depends on how you look at it,” said Hooter. He remembered the last time Knippleton had convinced him to hook him up with a pen of cattle. They were good calves bought right, fed right and they still lost a boatload because the doctor refused to consid-

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The Best of Both Worlds

F&R Livestock Resource page 41


Editor’s message continued Continued from page 3 _____________________________________

It takes a special human being to muster the fortitude to continue, rebuild homes and infrastructure, replant crops or replace cow herds. Agriculture is a special community that launches into action, regardless, to provide the financial

and emotional support to those effected, anywhere, any time. It’s a privilege to work among a population of people that consistently stare down impossible every day and are determined to prove that impossible is nothing.

Impossible is nothing. — Muhammad Ali

Specializing in

SIMANGUSTM GENETICS for over 30 years...

er risk management. Knippleton had whined to Hooter about his losses for six months. “Like we talked the last time, you got to have the right kind of mindset. If you’re going to worry what the market’s doing every minute they’re on feed, you probably shouldn’t roll the dice. And, if you aren’t willing to use the tools and advice available to try to hold your money together, there’s not much point. Besides which, you’re better off if you’re willing to stay for every turn of cattle, rather than dive in and out.” Knippleton lit up like a Christmas tree, momentarily stopping his exam. “Yes, turns, the turns of cattle. That was the terminology I was trying to remember just the other day when I was visiting with Nora Beth about the possibility.” Hooter was looking at him like he

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page 42

Winter 2019

was from another world. Then, “Oowwwww!” “Does that hurt?” “No, I just decided to shriek. Quit poking me there.” The doctor grabbed his chart and jotted a note with a frown of concern. “This might be problematic.” “Doc, like I told you, nothing’s changed. That sore spot was there three years ago, just like it is now. When I take those pills it feels better. When I don’t, like for the past two weeks because I couldn’t get my doctor to refill my prescription, it feels worse.” “Could you elaborate?” “I just did.” The doctor was looking at past notes. “I really wish you would have come in two years ago, like you said you’d do, when I gave the prescription to you initially.” “Well, it’s not like Apache Flats is just a stone’s throw from here,” said Hooter. “In order to make this 10 a.m. appointment, which got delayed better than an hour, I had to leave home at 7:30. I still don’t see why Doc Bulger can’t get my prescription filled.” Knippleton stopped his scribbling and raised his eyebrows. “For one thing, Doctor Henry happens to be a veterinarian. For another, anyone issuing the prescription to him for you would be breaking the law.” “Sure would save everybody a lot of time,” said Hooter, looking sidewise at the doctor. “And given how long it takes to get in here, we could use some extra time.” The doctor let it pass. “Well, Hooter, I have good news and bad news for you. The good news is that I see no reason not to refill your prescription for the time being. The bad news, at least I’m sure as far as you’re concerned, is that I want you to come back in next week so we can run a few additional tests.” “Why can’t you just do them now?” “We hadn’t scheduled the time to do them. If we did it now, we wouldn’t be able to see everyone who already has appointments today.” “But, I’ve got an appointment. This is it.” “It is, but not for that,” said the doctor. “I might also suggest that you seek to stay away from stressful situations that could aggravate your condition.” Hooter was past red. He was past mad, too. It was all so ridiculous he just shrugged back on his shirt. “Oh, before you go, we never did finish our conversation about me feeding a pen of cattle. Might I call on you?” “By all means,” said Hooter. “Let’s say this Friday. I’ll pencil you in for 10—you might want to pack a lunch.”


It’s a wild world out there. Prepare them for it.

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F&R Livestock Resource page 43


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F&R Livestock Resource, Winter 2019  

F&R Livestock Resource, Winter 2019