Missouri Livestock Symposium

The 18th annual Kirksville Livestock Symposium will be held December 1-2 in Kirksville, Missouri. Beef producers will learn how to provide added value in marketing. Plus, nationally recognized experts will explain market venues, how to prepare cattle for sale and creating valuable feeder calves. Other programs include planning a feeding program for weaned calves. The symposium will also have an agricultural trade show for attendees. For additional information, visit www.missourilivestock.com.

World Championship Ranch Rodeo kicks off November 9-12

The 22nd World Championship Ranch Rodeo will be held in Amarillo, Texas, this week. Working cowboys from U.S. ranches compete in events that are common activities on ranches, including wild cow milking, calf sorting and branding. This event also includes a Heritage Trade Show and Ranch equipment Expo, Cowboy Trade and Trappings Show and a Ranch Horse Show. The Crisis and Scholarship Brunch event will raise funds for the Working Ranch Cowboys Foundation, which provides scholarships and help to cowboys who have had an injury. For more information visit: www.wrca.org.

Cargill pioneers Canadian beef traceability pilot project

By the end of 2018, Cargill’s Canadian Beef Sustainability Acceleration pilot program will provide customers with beef from operations that have been audited from “birth to burger” implementing an industry-developed sustainability standard. This plan will incorporate new technologies, using only Canadian cattle at Cargill’s facility in High River, Alberta. The technology used includes RFID tag systems, and cattle will be tracked by the Beef Info-Exchange System (BIXS) from the time cattle producers tag them until processing. This program is built on knowledge learned from McDonald’s beef sustainability effort, completed in 2016.

Proposed meat processing plant for Montana producers

Recently, Montana’s Cascade County Planning Division received an application for the development of the Madison Food Park, a beef processing plant that would be built near Great Falls. There are 1.49 million beef cows and 45,000 head of cattle on feed in Montana, making The Big Sky State the perfect location for a processing facility. A feasibility study found that a 250 head-per-day plant could be supplied and would be profitable. The plant will employ over 3,000 people and export thousands of tons of meat to consumer markets throughout North America.

Genomic Technology helps to battle costly parasite

Researchers at the University of Calgary-Veterinary Medicine are using genomic technology to examine a parasite’s DNA, to find an effective drug to fight it. They are working on new drugs to treat livestock parasites, especially parasitic roundworms, which cost the Canadian Cattle industry some $210 million a year. Also a problem in the U.S., these parasites are developing drug resistance. Transmitted through the soil, roundworms live and feed in the animal’s intestines, resulting in weight loss, diarrhea, slowed growth rate and anemia.

Range Beef Cow Symposium

The 25th Range Beef Cow Symposium will be held November 28-30 in Cheyenne, Wyoming, with hands-on demonstrations, a chance to visit with other ranchers and an opportunity to ask national experts questions. More than 25 speakers will discuss topics including, nutrition, marketing, health, reproduction, consumer demand and current industry issues. There will be a half-day cattle-handling workshop. Additional information and registration is available at Rangebeefcow.com or call 307-837-2000.

Everything but the moo

One hundred percent of each cow or steer is used. About 60 percent of each animal is harvested for food. The other 40 percent is used for a variety of things such as lipstick, jet fuel, toothpaste, soaps and lubricants for jet engines. Cattle provide insulin, that lifesaving medicine, diabetics cannot live without. Collagen from the hide is processed and used in plastic surgery. Other uses for the hide include furniture, car seats, purses and boots. Cow bones produce gelatin used in marshmallows and candies and fertilizer for crops.

National Beef Quality Audit: We’re getting better

The 2016 National Beef Quality Audit (NBQA) indicates that beef quality continues to improve in the U.S. However, there are ways producers can improve quality. Food safety continues to be an important quality factor. There was a huge increase in the frequency of Prime and Choice and a decrease in the frequency of Select. There has been a continual increase in hot carcass weight as well as a decrease in black-hided cattle and an increase in Holstein-type cattle. Bruising continues to be a problem, but the bruises are smaller.

Report shows more U.S. beef exports in the next decade

The U.S. cattle and beef industries are in an expansion phase that is expected to last for another two to three years, according to a report from the RaboResearch Food & Agribusiness Group. The opportunities for increased beef exports are due to global population growth and improving middle-class incomes. The improved quality of U.S. beef over the last 10 years could also increase beef exports.

U.S. agency withdraws rule aimed at protecting animal farmers

The Farmer Fair Practice Rule rolled out by the USDA during President Obama’s final days in office never took effect. Recently, the Trump administration killed the rule designed to protect the rights of farmers who raise chickens, cows and hogs for the largest meat processors. Currently, the law forces a farmer to prove a company’s actions harm competition in the entire industry before a lawsuit can move forward.