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Topics of Interest

Dealing with Drought

Resource for producers across the country who are affected by drought.

Country-of-Origin Labeling

Information about country-of-origin labeling, and what it means for cattlemen.

Aim High

Information on how to capture added value by setting higher quality and profit goals.

Angus International

A platform for global information sharing spanning the worldwide Angus industry.

Beef Cow Efficiency

Perhaps the greatest single factor affecting your profitability as a beef producer.

Body Condition Scoring

Use body condition scores (BCS) to improve herd nutrition and efficiency.













Angus Productions Inc.












































March 20, 2009

What cowmen want

What do commercial cowmen really want from a seedstock supplier? Oh sure, they want bulls chock-full of “good genetics.” Admittedly, there are people only interested in a “cow freshener.” But most conscientious commercial producers can, with a little effort, identify sources of the genetics they seek. Often, a producer can find several different breeders offering bulls that represent a desired genetic package. How does that producer choose from whom to buy?

Curious about how the decision is made, this writer put the question to several commercial cow-calf producers. Read more.

Bull response

Ag Day Celebrate Ag Day 2009

Today, agricultural producers, associations, corporations, universities, government agencies and others will celebrate Ag Day 2009. The event was established to recognize the abundance provided by agriculture and encourage every American to:

Although agriculture provides almost everything our nation eats, uses and wears on a daily basis, too few people truly understand this contribution. To learn how to promote agricultural awareness in your area, click here.

The AAA Login Advantage:

American Angus Association offers resources around the clock to registered and commercial producers alike.

Users of Angus genetics can access information any time day or night by utilizing AAA Login, an online resource provided by the American Angus Association. The service also allows them to save time and avoid hassles associated with paper documents.

More than half of active Association members already use AAA Login, which is available to anyone with Internet access, including non-member buyers, also known as affiliates, who have Angus bulls or females transferred to their name. Affiliates are typically commercial cattle producers who use Angus genetics. Read more.

News Briefs ...

• USDA Approves E. Coli Vaccine

• Surprising Meat Sales

• Tank Heaters Recalled

• Congressional Hearing on Animal ID

• New Rule for Cattle 30 Months and Older

Ty Groshans

Ty Groshans

Association Perspective

Breakeven analysis

March is here, which brings to mind that many producers are right in the middle of calving. While the focus is on the current calf crop, several producers still have calves on the ranch from the previous year. The downward trend in the market last fall resulted in placements being down and calves being retained.

Utilizing a breakeven analysis will determine the current state of the market and allow the producer to make an educated decision whether or not to buy or sell feeder calves. Read more.

Industry-Driven Dairy Herd Retirement

A couple of months ago, rumors of a dairy herd buyout caused discontent in cattle country. Talk was that federal lawmakers sympathetic to the plight of the dairy industry wanted to allocate some $200-$300 million, through the economic stimulus bill, for that very purpose. The proposal raised hackles among cattlemen remembering the last time U.S. taxpayers were asked to fund a dairy buyout, and the consequences to the beef industry.

The new proposal never gained much traction and did not become part of the stimulus bill, but will the herd retirement plan hurt the cattle market? Read more.

Grain Prices Affect Entire Livestock Production Cycle

The biological timeline of livestock production prevents quick producer response to fluctuating feed costs. The timeline for meat production — from farm to retail — ranges from two months for poultry meat to two years for beef, making it difficult to change the direction of output quickly. Biological lags mean that animal products consumed today are based on production decisions made up to two years ago.

Record-high grain, oilseed and energy prices between 2006 and 2008 increased the costs of producing and marketing meat and dairy products. Expecting feed and energy costs to remain high, livestock producers began to cut back on animal and dairy production. But just as producers were making their livestock-production decisions for 2009, feed prices began to decline. The dollar strengthened, which lowered exports, and worldwide economic growth began to slow. As a result of decisions made before the end of 2008, livestock production will likely grow more slowly in 2009 and could begin to decline. Read more.

hay supply

Carbon Credits Worth Examining

Farmers and landowners could receive extra income from already-existing land management practices by selling carbon credits on the Chicago Climate Exchange, says a Purdue University expert.

“Farmers and landowners have an opportunity to sell carbon offset credits into carbon trading markets if they implement certain conservation practices,”said Lenny Farlee, Purdue Extension forester. “Eligible practices include no-till farming, if implemented between 2006 and 2010; grassland plantings that have been done since 1999, as well as forest tree plantings done since 1990.”Read more.

BIF Symposium Nears

Sacramento, Calif., will provide the backdrop for the 2009 Beef Improvement Federation (BIF) Annual Research Symposium and Annual Meeting April 30-May 3. The California Cattlemen's Association and the California Beef Cattle Improvement Association will host the event.

For a complete schedule or to register, visit

Coverage grows at
Nearly 80 articles and several photo galleries are available at, the web site devoted to coverage of the 2009 Cattle Industry Annual Convention and NCBA Trade Show compiled by Angus Productions Inc. (API).

Visit the newsroom now for coverage of award winners, committee action, production tips from the Cattlemen's College® and products highlighted in the trade show, including genetic products that were unveiled.

Visit the Links page of for access to other meeting coverage provided by API and links to information sites for body condition scoring, country-of-origin labeling, beef cow efficiency and more.

For more information on other upcoming industry meetings, use the link in the right-hand column of this page.