Angus Breeders Tailor Genetic Decisions for Future Market SuccessWed, 12 Jun 2013 16:10:28 CDT
Seed stock producers need to look ahead to see demand and solve future challenges. Feeder calf prices hit records in the last year, but breeder Dick Beck, general manager of Three Trees Ranch in Sharpsburg, Georgia, says the cattle business may look much different in five years.
"Eventually, feedlot capacity and packing capacity will contract and the cow herd will grow and the world will turn around. And, again, the competition level will change and quality will become a big determinant in the feeder cattle that have added value.
"What we tend to forget as seed stock people is that the bulls we're breeding today, a lot of them, will still be in service when times aren't this good and the daughters of those bulls will be in people's cow herds as the world changes. So, I think we have a responsibility to keep advancing our product, advancing the knowledge for the times that lay ahead for our customers."
Beck underscores the importance of carcass quality by gathering data on their own cattle including those that don't make the cut for breeding animals. Recent groups qualified up to 100 percent certified Angus beef and CAB Prime.
"Obviously, everything we do in the world, we all carry around a smart phone. We're all tracking information. Anyone who doesn't believe that ten years from now virtually every set of feeder cattle that's sold will either be genomicallly evaluated pr tracked, computerwise, to their previous performance in the feedlot or on the rail is probably kidding themselves. So we better make sure we're designing and creating the genetics that will withstand that level of evaluation."
He says carcass quality needs to be a central focus today as it will continue to gain economic importance to commercial producers down the road.
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