URUGUAY'S HEREFORD PASSIONAngus cattle may have taken the world by storm, but in Uruguay, Hereford cattle remain the most popular breed. Whiteface cattle account for 65 percent of the country’s 10.8 million beef cattle. Producers like the breed’s temperament and how it efficiently converts pasture into a good beef product. The national consumption per person is more than 60 kilograms (132.2 pounds) each year. These producers have pushed into more than 100 export markets, competing with Australia, Europe and the U.S.
FLAX SEED: THE NEXT SUPERFOOD FOR COWS AND BEEF?Flax is the oily seed that contains high levels of omega-3 fatty acids and fiber that protect humans against Alzheimer’s, heart disease, and even cancer. Kansas State University’s 10-year flax seed study found that feeding flax seed to cattle five months before slaughter reduced inflammation and the need for antibiotics. It also had an unexpected benefit for consumers because they could get their omega-3s from beef rather than salmon, tuna or walnuts.
POOR FORAGE CONDITIONS CHALLENGE THE U.S. BEEF INDUSTRYThe May 1 Crop Progress reports the inventory of 14.2 million tons of hay stocks is the smallest since 2007 and smaller than any May 1 since 1973. Total U.S. hay stocks on May 1, 2013 are down 36 percent from the previous 10-year average. Reduced hay production due to a two year drought and extended winter demands this spring have pulled hay stocks to low levels. Experts predict hay production is likely to be below normal again in 2013.
SENATE AGRICULTURE COMMITTEE PASSES FARM BILLOn 5-14-2013, the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry amended and passed their 2013 Farm Bill by a vote of 15 to 5. This legislation will move to the Senate floor for debate and amendment. The Farm Bill passed by the Senate Ag Committee funds beginning farmer and rancher training, rural small business loans, grants and loans for small town water and sewer systems and value-added enterprise grants for family farmers and ranchers. This bill also provides a sodsaver provision, which preserves grazing land, protects hunting opportunities and conserves vital soil resources.
TENNESSEE FIELD DAY TO HELP BEEF PRODUCERS WITH PRODUCTION COSTSScheduled for June 13, the annual University of Tennessee Beef and Forage Field Day will focus on how to help beef cattle producers manage production costs. The event will be hosted by the UT East Tennessee AgResearch and Education Center and UT Extension Eastern Region. Attendees will learn about production and management issues including surveying forage stands, renovating pastures, fencing laws and how supplemental feeding can affect bovine fetal development. For more information visit, http://east.tennessee.edu or call 865-974-7201.
NEW STUDY: EFFECTS OF WEATHER AND CLIMATE ON CATTLEThe USDA recently awarded $19.5 million to support research education and Extension activities associated with climate solutions in agriculture aimed at the impacts of climate variability and change on dairy and beef cattle. Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Oklahoma received $9.6 million over five years to better understand vulnerability and resilience of Southern Great Plains beef in an environment of increased climate variability, dynamic land-use and fluctuating markets.
2013 BEST REMUDA AWARDThe American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) and AQHA Corporate Partner Zoetis named the Matador Ranch of Matador, Texas the recipient of the 2013 Best Remuda Award. Owned by the Matador Cattle Company, a division of Koch Agriculture Company, the 130,000-acre Matador Ranch spans parts of five counties in Texas. Ranch records show AQHA involvement as early as the 1940’s and the horse-breeding focus of the ranch is to produce quality horses that are able to traverse rugged terrain safely with outstanding cow ability.
NEW OPPORTUNITIES IN BEEF CATTLE GENOME TESTINGAngus Genetics, Inc. and GeneSeek announced the immediate availability of the GeenSeek Angus GGP-HD test. Results from this advanced test will be incorporated into Angus Genomic-enhanced expected progeny differences (GE-EPDs) which are available through the American Angus Association National Cattle Evaluation. High density DNA tests benefit Angus breeders seeking to improve their herds through enhanced genetics. The GeenSeek Angus GGP-HD test replaces the Igenity® Profile Angus test and is priced at $75.
CELEBRATE NATIONAL BEEF MONTHMay is National Beef Month. Nationally there are over 750,000 beef cow operations producing 32.6 million head of beef cows. These producers feed and market 26.2 million cattle each year. There are 87,000 cattle feeding operations that have 14.3 million cattle on feed. Cattle and calves make up 41% of the $99 billion worth of U.S. livestock and poultry sold. Individuals, families, family held corporations and partnerships make up 99% of U.S. farm ownership.
BEEF CATTLE MANAGEMENT WORKSHOP IN CALHOUN, GA MAY 28A beef cattle reproductive management workshop will be held in Calhoun, GA, May 28. The program will cover a variety of topics focusing on developing quality replacement heifers for the cow/calf producer. The $10 registration fee includes dinner. Call 706-638-2548 for more information.