BeefTalk: With Cow Size, One Can’t Forget Production Potential
Kris Ringwall, Beef Specialist, NDSU Extension Service
Percentage of Cow Weight Weaned Percentage of Cow Weight Weaned
What size cow is right?
The Dickinson Research Extension Center recently established two sets of cattle based on body weight. Since the year was dry, the cow size question came up quickly.
What size cow is right? How does one measure inputs versus production?
These two herds (groups) of cattle were weighed in the late fall or early winter. The difference in weight was 355 pounds.
The first herd of 52 cows averaged 1,216 pounds (856 to 1,395 pounds). The second herd of 50 cows averaged 1,571 pounds (1,350 to 1,935 pounds).
The Seedstock Industry Has Lost A Little Confidence
Few would describe the U.S. beef industry as overly optimistic these days. After all, the prodigious and deep change wracking the beef economy has most folks concerned and anxious, and the uncertainty is especially acute in the seedstock segment.
Cattlemen Support Waiver of Renewable Fuels Standard Mandate
In comments filed today with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is supporting a petition filed by the State of Texas to reduce federal mandates for production of grain-based fuels. The petition requests that EPA use its statutory authority to reduce the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) mandate for 2008 by 50 percent – trimming the mandate to 4.5 billion gallons of feedgrain-based ethanol, from the current 9 billion gallons.
Speaker raises prospect of corn rationing
Record corn prices are creating major concerns for the livestock feeding industry, and if the run-up continues, corn rationing for animals may be an option, according to one expert at the 2008 Texas Ag Forum in Austin this week.
Cattle feedlot operators are becoming less tolerant of record corn prices, and some feedlots are on the brink of putting themselves up for sale or going out of business, speakers said.
Farmers squeezed by waning profits despite rise in food prices
Last year, Bobby Nedbalek spent about $680 to fill up his combine and tractor with diesel for a day of harvesting.
Turns out that was a bargain.
Now he’s spending $1,290 a day to fill up that equipment.
“Some would say farmers are on the verge of a crisis,” said Stefphanie Gambrell, a domestic policy economist for the American Farm Bureau Federation. She blames high fuel prices.
Nedbalek serves as vice president of the Waco-based Texas Farm Bureau when he’s not working his family farm in San Patricio County.
Why grass-fed beef is the next big thing in Minnesota farming—and local dining
TWENTY YEARS AGO, MIKE NOBLE’S spread was everything a modern farm is supposed to be: flush with fertilizers, high-yielding hybrid seeds, and hogs confined like shoes in a box, the better to fatten the beasts with factory-like efficiency. But it was killing his family. His wife became mysteriously sickened from working in the hog barn—chemicals, most likely, in the feed or manure had built up in her body. Their son nearly died from an antibiotic-resistant strain of E. coli, which was present in the pork. So they shuttered the hog operation, prompting their banker (who’d hoped they would expand) to pull their loan. It was the mid-1980s and the Nobles were broke—ruined by the modernization that had promised them prosperity.
Champion Bulls and Backyard Barbeques
A cattleman certainly knows his way around a barbecue, and Chad Berger obviously does.
Berger not only raises his cattle for beef, he also develops champions.
For Berger is hands down the top stock contractor for the Professional Bull Riders.
You wouldn`t ever want to get to Copperhead Slinger, the number two bull in the world, who lives just outside of Mandan. At 1,850 pounds, he`s a force to be reckoned with. His father is Mossy Oak Mudslinger from Oklahoma, the 2006 Bull of the Year.
Berger thinks nothing of traveling the country buying the biggest and meanest bulls around, kind of like George Steinbrenner with his Yankees payroll.
Flooded crops fueling fears of price hikes at the supermarket
ELKHART COUNTY — Local farmers are beginning to feel the pinch from record flooding across the Midwest. They’re not the only ones. Price hikes are on their way to a grocery store near you.
It’s more bad news for consumers already being hit by record prices at the gas pump, and price hikes in checkout lines due to increased food shipping prices. Now, some economists predict prices on many foods could jump again by as much as 10 percent across the board within a matter of weeks.
Eat that? Agriculture secretary’s reassurance rings hollow in light of current industrial beef processing
Editor’s note: Stories of this ilk are included in the blog to inform those in our industry how agriculture is being presented to and perceived by the public.
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer recently assured Americans that USDA inspectors check “every single” processed American beef carcass. Charitably put, his statement is highly misleading. USDA inspections are perfunctory and fall far short of checks performed by other countries’ meat watchdogs.
Q&A:We test yearling bulls. ADG target is 3.5 lbs per day. If substituting soybean hulls for corn, what is the % of soy hulls to corn required? I have seen everything from 1:1 to 1.25:1.
Dr. Terry Mader, Professor of Animal Science, University of Nebraska
A: When fed with corn, soyhulls have a greater feeding values than when fed as a sole source of feed. Also soyhulls have a greater protein concentration than corn. For optimum diet energy and protein levels feeding a mixture may be more important than the actual ratios.
Cattle Preconditioning: What Vaccinations Should Be Given Throughout The Year?
This is difficult to answer because management practices, disease prevalence, and nutritional levels vary from region to region or even from ranch to ranch in the same area. Recommendations in this fact sheet are meant to serve as guidelines. You should consult your veterinarian and Cooperative Extension agent to tailor a program to your operation.
Commonly used vaccines and injections are listed here. Sometimes you may need to use all of them. At other times you may need very few. The vaccines and injections are listed starting at calving time and continuing through fall.
Beef industry faces possible $8 corn
Meat & Poultry
Irreparable damage to this year’s corn crop from rain and flooding is making cash corn prices above $7 per bushel more likely. Some forecasts are for prices to go to $8 or even $9 if this year’s already-challenged crop faces pollination problems and summer drought. Mother Nature has conspired to reduce the crop just when optimum planting and establishment conditions were needed to grow as much corn as possible. But a wet spring through much of the Corn Belt delayed plantings and damaged plant emergence. Then came even heavier rains and flooding. This affected established crops and washed out some plantings.
S.Korea to limit U.S. beef imports to young cattle
South Korea’s embattled president said on Thursday the country would not allow the entry of U.S. beef without a guarantee from the U.S. government that exports would be restricted to products from younger cattle.
Cattle Handling: Basic Sections In A Well-Designed Working Facility
· Holding pens
· Alley from pens to working area
· Crowding pen/tub
· Working alley
· Restraining area/squeeze chute
· Loading area
· Holding Pens
Keys to good holding-pen design are having enough pens to meet your needs, having them of sufficient size so animals cannot get past you, and having an easy animal flow to and from the working area. More than one pen will probably be needed so that you can sort cattle into groups.
Mexico Not Behind Montana’s Brucellosis Outbreak
State officials- and the owner of a Paradise Valley cow recently sickened with brucellosis this week quashed a rumor that brucellosis came to Montana from exotic Mexican cattle, not local wildlife.
“Absolutely not,” said Christian Mackay, executive officer of the Montana Board of Livestock. “(Mexican cattle) were not the source of the outbreak.”
Brucellosis appeared last week for the second time in 18 months in Montana cattle. That will cause the state to lose its “brucellosis-free” status and could be a multi-million dollar hit to the state’s cattle economy.