Daily Archives: March 6, 2008

In the Wake of drought: Getting Cows in Calving Condition

In the Wake of drought: Getting Cows in Calving Condition

Troy Smith

Angus Journal

If drought doesn’t top the list of factors, it had to be the leading natural force. Countless cattle enterprises failed for lack of feed and often water because of extended periods of dry weather. It has affected virtually every region periodically, and some parts of cow country always seem to be on the verge of another drought. Often, the operations that survive the really bad ones are changed forever.

It still happens today, of course. Fortunately, cattle producers have more and better management tools. Applying knowledge born of practical experience and scientific research, they use range and pasture management, harvested forage supplies and other alternative feed resources to buffer the effects of drought. Even so, a string of long, dry years can take a toll on cattle performance. Managers of cow-calf operations often have to be resourceful to maintain reproductive performance, for without reproduction, there is no production.


10 Tips for Better Handling and Administering of Vaccines

10 Tips for Better Handling and Administering of Vaccines

Hereford World

Vaccinations are an important key to proper animal health and herd health management. A nd, to ensure that vaccination is as effective as possible, proper vaccine handling and ad ministration are very important. The following tips from Dale Grotelueschen, veterinarian with Pfizer Animal Health, will help get you on the right path to better herd health management:


Wall Street Loves JBS Beef-Buying Spree

Wall Street Loves JBS Beef-Buying Spree


Stocks of meat processors rose sharply in morning trading on the news that JBS has agreed to purchase U.S. beef packer rivals National Beef Packing Co. and Smithfield Beef Group. (See JBS S.A. buys Smithfield Beef Group, Australia’s Tasman Group on Meatingplace.com, March 5, 2008.)

Shares of Tyson Foods rose more than 6 percent to $15.86 per share on the New York Stock Exchange. If the JBS acquisitions come through, it would leave Tyson and JBS each holding a roughly 30 percent share of U.S. capacity. The other big beef player, Cargill Meat Solutions, is privately held.


Scientists Identify Limousin “Muscling Gene”

Scientists Identify Limousin “Muscling Gene”

Cattle Today

Americans’ increasing demand for lean beef produced without supplemental growth hormones is adding significance to an Australian discovery.

Researchers at Adelaide University have identified a gene that explains a large increase in retail beef yield. It is a modification of the myostatin gene called “myostatin F94L,” and it frequently occurs in Limousin cattle but rarely in other breeds. The scientific journal Animal Genetics published the research this summer.

The modified gene explains a large proportion of the Limousin breed’s advantage in retail yield, earning the “Limousin muscling gene” moniker. It is not the same modification of the myostatin gene that causes double muscling and lowered fertility in some breeds. Additionally, the F94L variation does not have any adverse effects on birth weight or calving ease.


The Importance of the Corn Economy

The Importance of the Corn Economy

Vincent Gioia

The National Ledger

Our food supply depends to a large extent on corn. We feed corn to cattle and cows to provide meat on the table and milk in our glass. It is fed to chickens to provide a staple in our diet and eggs for our morning breakfast. Corn is used to make fructose which is a basic ingredient used to satisfy our “sweet tooth”. And, unfortunately, it is now used as a tool by global warming zealots who want to change our way of life.

The growing craze to adapt ethanol to a transportation fuel has such far reaching consequences that our and the entire world’s economy, and all our food sources, are disastrously affected.


New IBCA president elected

New IBCA president elected

Dave Russell

Brownfield Network

The Indiana Beef Cattle Association (IBCA)has elected new officers for 2008-2009. Todd McGraw of West Lafayette is the new president, President-Elect is Dave Smith of Greensburg, Jason Tower of Dubois will serve as vice president and Jim Lankford of Martinsville, treasurer. Also named to the IBCA Executive Committee are Membership Chairman, Clark Sennett of Waynetown, Promotion Chairman, Abby Nichols of Franklin and immediate Past President, Joe Rode of Mooresville.

Looking to his year as President, McGraw, the president of McGraw’s Steak Chop and Fish House tells Brownfield there are a couple of challenges facing the cattle industry.


Benefits of Growth Enhancement Technology

Benefits of Growth Enhancement Technology

Beef Technologies.com

Technology is a key factor in keeping beef competitive in the consumer’s food basket.

Technology improves the efficiency of beef production, reduces the cost of production, improves the health and well-being of beef cattle and contributes to maintaining the availability of beef. It has a significant impact on the overall consistency, quality and wholesomeness of beef, all of which lead to providing the consumer with a consistent supply of beef at an affordable price.


Beef and dairy can be good for the planet

Beef and dairy can be good for the planet

Making a case for cows

Suzanne Nelson


Cows get a pretty bad rap these days. Bovines are, well, quite gassy and cow farts have become officially part of the national discourse. The methane cows exude has been blamed as a more potent contributor to global climate change than carbon dioxide, the primary byproduct of burning fossil fuels. (There’s nothing like a little potty humor to enliven a newscast.)

For those down on cattle’s ecological cred, reducing or eliminating the consumption of meat and dairy has become the logical solution. Veganism is the new green.

“I do hear a lot of cow bashing these days,” says Rob Hogan of Hogan’s Magnolia View Farm in Carrboro, who raises a couple dozen cows a year.


Humane Society sues USDA over torture

Humane Society sues USDA over torture

Daily Vidette

Information uncovered by investigators at a California slaughterhouse has led to a lawsuit concerning the possible contamination of the country’s food supply.

The United States Department of Agriculture has fallen under scrutiny since a video released in January by the Humane Society of the United States led to the single largest beef recall in American history.

The Humane Society is suing the USDA for illegal practices.

Investigators filmed cows being led to the slaughter at the Hallmark Meat Packing plant in California.

One segment of the video shows a forklift forcing a cow forward, only to have it roll over on its back.


House committee subpoenas California meat packer

House committee subpoenas California meat packer

Christopher Doering


A House Energy and Commerce subcommittee voted unanimously on Wednesday to subpoena testimony from the head of Hallmark/Westland Meat Co, the California firm involved in the largest U.S. meat recall ever.

“The subcommittee’s subpoena power is not a tool we like to utilize, but we will use it when necessary to provide proper oversight,” said Rep. Bart Stupak, chairman of the Energy and Commerce subcommittee on oversight and investigations.


Cattle Study-Panama City

Cattle Study-Panama City


Some researchers in Jackson County are taking the phrase “you are what you eat” literally.

The group is trying to find out how a cattle’s diet affect the meat it produces. And they’re getting the information straight from the source.

At first glance these cows look like any other beef cattle. But they’re not. UF Research Center Cliff Lamb says they’re a part a major scientific experiment.

“In this study with the canulated steer, where he has a hole inside his rumen.”

The rumen is the largest of a steer’s four stomachs that can hold up to 60 pounds of food. Canulated refers to the basketball size hole cut into rumen.


US Sen Grassley Voices Concern Over Beef Co Consolidations

US Sen Grassley Voices Concern Over Beef Co Consolidations


U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Ill., reacted swiftly to the news of the JBS SA (JBSS3.BR) purchase of National Beef and Smithfield Foods’ (SFD) beef division, voicing his concern over the “further consolidation in the (U.S.) beef industry.”

The prepared release issued Wednesday by Grassley’s office said consolidation “will reduce market opportunities for family farmers and increase prices and provide less choice for consumers.”

JBS would be far and away the largest cattle slaughtering country in the U.S. if the mergers are completed. JBS would be able to slaughter about 42,000 head of cattle on a daily basis in the U.S., including fed cattle and cows. Cargill Meat Solutions and Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) can slaughter about 29,000 and 28,000 head, respectively, according to industry analysts.


Effort Made to Bring Consumers and Producers Closer

Effort Made to Bring Consumers and Producers Closer

Cattle Today

Four companies announced a joint effort to build bridges between consumers and beef producers.

Consumer First Beef Partners comprises Certified Angus Beef LLC (CAB), Pfizer Animal Health, Land O’ Lakes Purina Feed LLC and Drovers/food360. The four companies represent key components of meeting consumer demand: genetics, health, nutrition and information.

Through unified leadership and education, the partners aim to better align production philosophies, strategies and management practices to raise cattle that meet the consumer demand for high-quality beef.


Ration Software For Beef Cows: What, Why, How?

Ration Software For Beef Cows: What, Why, How?


We know that a wide range of factors impacts the nutritional requirements of a cowherd: body weight, breed type, body condition, stage and level of production, age, and environmental conditions. The more of these we account for in our diet formulations, the more closely these diets will match the actual needs of the cows. Of course, each additional input also complicates the actual calculations, increasing the time it takes to balance a ration, and introducing additional opportunities for human math error. This can effectively discourage any real analysis of a feeding program, such as working through multiple rations for “what if” scenarios, or comparing costs of feeding options.


Mixed Views On JBS’s Purchase Of US Beef Operations

Mixed Views On JBS’s Purchase Of US Beef Operations


Market analysts and agricultural economists hold mixed views of the JBS SA (JBSS3.BR) purchase of National Beef and Smithfield Foods’ (SFD) beef division.

If the deals are completed, JBS would be able to slaughter about 42,000 head of cattle on a daily basis in the U.S., including fed cattle and cows. Cargill Meat Solutions and Tyson Foods Inc. (TSN) can slaughter about 29,000 and 28,000 head, respectively, according to industry analysts.