Evolving Beef Cow Herd Genetics Drive Marketing Methods to MatchWed, 22 Aug 2012 10:43:02 CDT
As beef cow herd genetics gradually changed across the country, fed cattle marketing methods evolved to fit those cattle. Bill Dicke of Cattlemen’s Nutrition Services, Lincoln, Nebraska, “We’ve definitely moved more towards carcass-based pricing. Quality is a big component of that. There have been opportunities for producers to generate premiums. And, with genetic improvements success in the industry, I expect that to increase further.”
Fellow feedlot nutritionist Dave McClellan of McClellan Consulting Service, Fremont, Nebraska, says that quest for premium beef rewards indicates cattlemen are more focused on end results than ever before.
“If anyone had told us ten years ago that we would see all of these significant niches that appear to have traction, the natural entities, the organic entities, Certified Angus Beef, the list is fairly lengthy and we have definitely moved away from commodity cattle. And one way to realize value for the animal you’re producing is to grid market. Get into a niche market, develop a relationship with a negotiated grid where you’re rewarded for doing things right.”
Part of doing what’s right is selecting for traits that have the most promise for pleasing consumers.
“We know more and more about genetics than we’ve ever known,” says David Hutcheson of Animal Agriculture Consulting in Scroggins, Texas. “I would look for something that would give me a higher incidence of marbling at a lower body compositional fat.”
That quest has become easier, McClellan says, as Angus genetics become more common in the beef business.
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