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.”