Tools to Best Match Cattle and Grid Markets
Dennis L. DeWitt
, livestock field specialist
Iowa beef producers have 50 breeds, 30 implant strategies, many ration combinations
of energy and protein, and three or more grid marketing programs available to
them. This makes management decisions very difficult. How does a beef producer
know which combination of programs will provide the most profit potential for
Fifty-two producers attended an area-wide program with expert speakers on energy,
protein, implant strategies, and grid analysis. The program was partially funded
by NEW Cooperative, Ft. Dodge and Iowa Beef Center.
Thirty-two evaluations were completed following the meeting. Feedlot size ranged
from 60 to 8000 head with 22 under 1000 head, six over 1000 head, and four consultants
responded. Nineteen out of 31 producers had low to fair knowledge of energy
strategies before and 12/31 had good to high knowledge before. After the meeting
23 responded to having fair to quite a lot of benefit gained. Twenty-seven producers
had fair to good knowledge and only one had high knowledge about protein strategies
before the meeting. Twenty-six producers gained a fair or quite amount of benefit
from the program. Twenty producers with little to fair and only two had a high
amount of knowledge before about implant strategies. After the meeting, 18 producers
had gained quite a lot of benefit about implant strategies. Before the meeting
20 producers had little to fair amount of knowledge about chute side decisions.
After the meeting, 24 producers indicated an increase in benefits gained. Twenty-three
producers had little to fair amount of knowledge and nine had good to high knowledge
about analyzing different beef grids before the meeting. The number doubled
to 18 after the meeting on fair to lots of knowledge about grids. Only nine
producers had knowledge before and 21 after the meeting about marketing on a
boxed beef basis. Twenty-two producers indicated a lot was learned from the
general discussion time.
Twenty-six producers gave a positive over-all evaluation. Nineteen out of 31
producers are feeding higher energy levels today than two years ago. Twenty-six
out of 30 are implanting at least once. One was using a conservative, nine a
moderate, seven an aggressive, and nine were not sure of their implant strategy.
Only five were not marketing on a grid program. The 26 producers were marketing
65 percent on a grid. Twenty-four producers are interested in marketing on a
boxed beef based grid. The estimated production operational value from this
program was $24,800.
Page last updated:
July 8, 2006
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