Auction Market BQA Video Released
The beef industry, through the checkoff-funded BQA (Beef Quality Assurance) program and the Livestock Marketing Association (LMA), recently released an auction market BQA training DVD titled “Focal Point, an Auction Market BQA Guide”. Given recent events at the Westlake/Hallmark packing plant in California and the resulting increased regulatory and media attention given to animal handling throughout the livestock industry, it is more important than ever that livestock markets do all that they can to reinforce proper animal handling techniques and practices at their facilities.
Volunteers help rescue beef cattle
Bangor Daily News
MASARDIS, Maine — John and Noella Craig have discovered the kindness of friends and strangers in the last 10 days as they have tried to bring a semblance of normalcy to their beef cattle farm. Winds associated with a blizzard on Good Friday ripped apart their animals’ 320-foot-by-46-foot shelter, killing 17 to 20 of the couple’s cows and calves during the night of March 20.
The three-sided shelter protected nearly 100 head of cattle before the accident.
Forty to 50 volunteers showed up Saturday and Sunday to help shore up and make safe the remaining 96 feet of the building still standing after the catastrophe.
VeriPrime Approves New Best Practices for Beef Production
Snackfood & Wholesale Bakery
Protocols for the implementation of E. coli-safeguards, that include new best practices, animal husbandry, biosecurity, and chain traceability for cattle, have been adopted and implemented by VeriPrime, Inc., of Wichita, KS, at the recommendation of an independent Beef Technical Advisory Council.
Getting Beef from the Ranch to the Plate the Right Way
American Society for Quality/The Press Enterprise (Riverside, CA)
The 1,300-pound steers are led into a 2-foot-wide concrete chute. They make little noise. Some stick their heads out, like dogs looking over a fence. The chute narrows. A gate closes behind the animal.
The steer is in the knocking box. A slaughterhouse worker—the knocker—waits with a stun gun. He cocks and fires. Propelled by a blank round, a retractable rod penetrates the steer’s skull and brain. A revolving gate opens. The body hits the kill floor—lifeless.
Inside Manning Beef, workers wear rubber boots and aprons. A chain and hook are attached to a pulley on the ceiling. A worker wraps them around the steer’s rear foot. The animal is raised off the floor. It sways. Its nerves twitch.
The throat is slit. Blood floods into a drain. The metallic smell of the blood permeates the humid room. The head is cut off. The black and white hide is peeled away. Organs are removed. The gate opens again with a thud, drowning out fans that constantly run. The process starts again. It will be repeated 240 times by day’s end.
Factors Related To Consider When Culling Cows From The Herd
Culling cows from beef operations frequently is thought of as a necessary evil for beef producers. Annually, producers remove 10 to 25% of their cow inventory and replace those cows with new breeding stock in the form of pregnant replacement females (raised or purchased) or purchased pregnant cows. Removing the unhealthy, nonpregnant, old, or poor performing cows from the herd seldom is thought of as a significant financial contributor to a beef operation. However, with some strategic planning producers could enhance the value of their cull cows significantly by understanding numerous management and market factors.
Screening chip could speed up pathogen detection in animals
A new screening chip designed to detect diseases in poultry and livestock could help limit supply problems and economic loss, which have been a considerable headache for meat processors in recent cases of disease outbreak.
The microarray was developed by scientists at the UK Institute of Animal Health (IAH), and is said to be able to detect up to 300 different viruses that infect animals and humans, including farm livestock and birds.
Cattle cloning not a viable option for local farmers
The Shoals Times daily
Alabama consumers who have a beef with eating meat from cloned animals aren’t likely to find it in grocery stores or restaurants anytime soon.
“It’s too expensive now to clone animals for farmers to send them to the slaughterhouse,” said Randall Armstrong, Lauderdale County coordinator for the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. “I don’t see the economics being there anytime soon for cloned animals to begin showing up in the food supply.”
South Korean ambassador promises quick end to beef ban
After several previous false starts, South Korea’s market may be just weeks from truly re-opening to U.S. beef. That’s the upshot of remarks during by South Korea’s ambassador to the United States during a press conference held in the heart of American cattle country.
South Korean Ambassador Lee Tae Sik wrapped up a three-state tour Tuesday in Omaha, where he met with Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman and state agricultural and business leaders. Mr. Lee’s key message? New South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and the nation’s parliament understand the country’s de facto U.S. beef ban may de-rail the pending U.S.-Korean Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and South Korea wants to get that deal done.
American Simmental Association will Celebrate 40th Anniversary at SimPlace 2008
Bozeman, MT: American Simmental Association (ASA) members will assemble in Urbana, Illinois on April 8-9, for SimPlace 2008. The theme of the conference is “The Science of Making Better Cattle and Better Beef” with the 40th Anniversary Celebration highlighting the event.
The Holiday Inn and Conference Center will serve as SimPlace headquarters. The University of Illinois (UI) Research Facility in Urbana, Illinois is the site of the ASA feed efficiency trial being done in conjunction with UI and Montana State University. SimPlace will kick off with a tour of the facility.
ASA will take advantage of the meeting to promote programs such as SimChoice Source & Age Verification and the 70-70 Beef Marketing Grid. Many of the industry’s leading animal scientists and authorities will be on hand to discuss efficiency, genetics and profitability.
Bison pushing beef among meat lovers
Cleveland Plain Dealer
Oh give me a home
Where the buffalo roam
And infarction ain’t due to a meal
Where seldom is heard
Doc’s disparaging word
And my arteries have not yet congealed.
The American buffalo is home on the range… And on the grill… And in the Crock-Pot… And the in saucepan… And in the stockpot… And the . . . well, you get the point.
A National Institutes of Health study revealed in December that the average American’s cholesterol had dropped below the recommended maximum of 200 for the first time in years. Why? The study cited an increase in the numbers of people, age 60 and older, taking cholesterol meds.
NCBA Spring Legislative Conference underway in Washington
Cattle producers from across the country are gathering in the nation’s capital this week for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Spring Legislative Conference. The primary objective of the conference is for cattlemen to visit their members of Congress on Capitol Hill, to discuss the farm bill along with other issues.
Parentage to Tenderness
Barb Baylor Anderson
Breeding may not be an exact science, but using MMI Genomics’ DNAbased breeding selection tools may move the Angus industry one step closer. For the last several years, the genomics technology research-and-development company has established successful results with its DNA products, including the parentage verification tool used by the American Angus Association. New desirable meat trait products are also now available.
FULL STORY PDF
TB fears prompt stricter livestock import rules
Minnesota’s status likely to be downgraded soon
The Country Today
Wisconsin livestock health officials are beefing up animal import requirements in an effort to keep bovine tuberculosis from jumping the border from Minnesota.
The new rules will take effect when federal officials downgrade Minnesota’s bovine tuberculosis status, probably by early April.
“We now have relatively high rates of TB on both sides of us – in Michigan and Minnesota,” said Wisconsin State Veterinarian Robert Ehlenfeldt.
Most of the new rules, which apply to cattle, bison and goats, are required by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Steady supply of hay saves cattle
Asheville Citizen Times
Thanks in part to a state emergency hay supply program, the state’s beef cattle population — including sizable numbers in the mountains — largely survived the winter.
Statewide, cattle numbers in January declined about 2 percent compared to a year earlier, dropping from about 850,000 to 830,000, according to the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
Beef Cattle SPA Workshops to Be Held in April and May
The Farmer Stockman
Texas AgriLife Extension is offering three Beef Cow-calf Standardized Performance Analysis Workshops.
They are: April 22, at the Young County Arena, Graham, Texas; April 30 at the Management, Instruction, and Research Center, 7945 Grape Creek Road in San Angelo; and May 7 at the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center south of Vernon.
Each workshop will begin at 8:30 a.m.
The workshops are aimed at assisting ranchers in determining how their operation is performing from both a production and financial standpoint