March 21, 2019 | Vol. 12 : No. 3

Front Page

Become a Better Observer

Animal well-being is enhanced by better observations and patience.

Renowned animal-handling expert Temple Grandin compares yelling at cattle to an idling pickup truck. A pickup does not have intent until you stomp on the gas; it is the same with your voice. Yelling has intent, but it’s the wrong kind.

“The most important thing when working with cattle is becoming an observer,” explains Grandin, a Colorado State University (CSU) animal science professor. “Watch where their ears are pointing and what they are doing in reaction to a stimulus.”

Adam Conover

Association Perspective

Meeting the needs.

During my various opportunities throughout the year to spend time with cattlemen across my territory, one thing becomes particularly evident. The needs of different producers are as vast as the number of producers itself. Some breeders focus almost solely on calving ease, while others tend to put selection pressure on performance, others on carcass traits, and some even have a distinct goal of selecting for maternal traits.

Association to Update $Value Indexes

Updates are based on a major research effort and will be effective this June.

The American Angus Association Board of Directors approved changes to its suite of bioeconomic dollar value indexes ($Values) during the February board meeting Feb. 18-21, 2019. Updated $Values will be available this June.

Changes include revisions to beef value ($B); updating the weaned calf value ($W) model to the new maternal value ($Maternal); and rounding all $Values to whole dollars, eliminating decimals. Quality grade ($QG) and yield grade ($YG) will be removed because $QG is redundant to the marbling expected progeny difference (EPD), and $YG is redundant to fat and ribeye area (REA) EPDs.

In addition, a balanced index will be implemented June 2020 with a complete education plan to be executed with the membership and industry during the next 15 months.

‘Fake Meat’ Jurisdiction

USDA and FDA announce a formal agreement to regulate cell-cultured food products from cell lines of livestock and poultry.

The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a formal agreement to jointly oversee the production of human food products derived from the cells of livestock and poultry.

Virtual Reality Beef Ranch Tours Expand to Global Audiences

A look inside America’s beef industry now available to new audiences with translated 360-degree virtual tours.

In an effort to share more about beef farming and ranching with audiences across the globe, Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. is making its virtual ranch tours available in Korean, Japanese and Spanish.

The project — made possible by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) and National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), contractors to the Beef Checkoff, and Iowa Beef Industry Council — will offer a variety of new audiences an opportunity to virtually experience the U.S. beef industry and production practices.

Promise for Treating Cystic Fibrosis

NIH-funded discovery uses common antifungal drug to improve lungs’ ability to fight infection.

Researchers say a widely used antifungal drug may hold promise for treating people with cystic fibrosis, a life-threatening genetic disorder that causes serious damage to the lungs. In studies using human cells and animal models, the researchers found that the medication, called amphotericin, helps lung cells function in a way that could make it easier for patients to fight chronic bacterial lung infections that are a hallmark of the disease.

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