Costs of producing beef in a “natural” program without implants or antibiotics.

Costs of producing beef in a “natural” program without implants or antibiotics.

John R. Brethour and Brittany Bock

There is considerable interest in programs that market beef that has been produced from cattle that were not implanted or fed antibiotics. This research measured the additional costs from engaging in a natural program in which performance would be adversely affected by omitting technology that improves production efficiency.

In this study, steers on the conventional program were implanted with Synovex Plus at the beginning of the trial in Experiment 1 and with Synovex Choice at the beginning of the trial and Synovex Plus 70 days before laughter in Experiment 2. In both experiments 300 mg Rumensin and 90 g Tylan were fed daily to cattle on the conventional treatment. These practices were omitted among the natural cattle. It is not known whether the cattle had been implanted before they were obtained for this research; but that should have not materially affected results.

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