UNIVERSITY OF ;
FLORIDA 'le S i
IFAS EXTENSION .isll, .i
In This Issue...
Bccf Mana'cgment Calendar
lUF Helps Launch Ne\\ Food Safet' Institutc of the
T\ cnt\ $1.5i i1 Bcef Industri Scholarships Axailablc 4
Coninissioner Bronson Lauds Mutli Mlillion Dollar
Infusion of Funds in Recoe\ c Aid to Florida
Farmers and Forests
lana,_meni t of Fall Bod\ Condition of Beef Co\\s 6
Effects of a Gro\\lh Implant. Maibling EPD. Se\. and
BrcdtI pc on Tenderness of Bccf Stcaks 6
Factors Affecting the Deposition of Nlarblinm 7
Top Fi c Beef Packers 7
Smithfield Enters the Cattcl Fecdinm Business in a
Biy, \\a\ X
LU S Meat and PoultrI Supplies Record Large X
Prepared by Extension Specialists in
Beef Cattle Management, Ona
*: J.N. Carter
Beef Cattle Extension Specialist, Marianna
*: GR. Hansen
Beef Cattle Production, Marianna
EG. Hembry, Professor
Department Chairman, Gainesville
Extension Beef Cattle Specialist, Gainesville
*: T.A. Houser
Extension Meat Specialist, Gainesville
E.L. Johnson, Associate Professor
Extension Equine Specialist, Gainesville
T.T. Marshall, Professor
Beef Cattle Management, Gainesville
: R.O. Myer, Professor
Animal Nutritionist, Marianna
*: R.S. Sand, Associate Professor
Extension Livestock Specialist, cG.:,..A ,I
SW. Taylor, Coordinator
Youth Education/Training, Gainesville
S.H. TenBroeck, Associate Professor
Extension Equine Specialist, Gainesville
T.A. Thrift, Assistant Professor
Beef Cattle Nutrition, Gainesville
< /], Dates to Remember
I ThIcc Ticcs F.lni Bull Sik \\oodbun GA
2 Election Day
2 Fill FoLecs & SuppkiclKniiii on Mki- n2 -
Games\ ilk. FL
5 Hardee Farms Black Bull Sale Chiefland, FL
5 Ro,-is Bau HR Puikci C(haiolis Sial Ok )cchobcc.
5-7 Eastern National 4-H Horse Roundup Louisville, KY
6-" Arn.dondo Dicssa-'c Slho\ Nc\\ blrn\. FL
11 Veterans' Day
13 \\aildcn Farms Bull Salk Bwintkl\. AL
13 Pony Club Open Show Newberry, FL
13-14 (Cjikrbiin Dil\ n111 Tiulls Nc'\ bci\. FL
13-14 Welsh Pony Show Newberry, FL
16 N lioInu l 4-H L i\ stock .Iidtn iin' Contest Loiii's\ ille.
18-21 Dixie Paint Rose Classic Newberry, FL
19 Fifili Ainniual Hardce Comni\ All Biced Bull Sjlc -
\\V jichula. FL
19-20 Camp Cooley Bull Sale Franklin, TX
1-3 FC.A Q(uncllll NIccinI- ScbriiiL'. FL
3-5 Florida Palomino Exhibitors Association Show -
4 4-H Y'outh L iN stock E\Aluation School Gaiesu ilk.
6 Salacoa Valley Farm Bull Sale Fairmont, GA
II 4--H FFA Ho-isc Jiludrn il School Gaines\ 1il FL
11 Canterbury Schooling Dressage/Driving Newberry,
1 7-1) Rushi Hunlki Juminpci A Raicd Sho\\ Nci\\ bIn FL
20 Okeechobee Slaughter Cow Sale Okeechobee, FL
25 Chlrisiii s
Moo I How the smarter
The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Employment Opportunity Affirmanve Acon Employer authorized to provide research, educational information, and other
services only to individuals that functon with regard to race, color, sex, age, handicap, or national origin. For information on obtaining other extension pubhcatons, contact your county
Cooperative Extension Service office.
0 Have soils tested.
0 Observe cows daily to detect calving difficulty.
0 Use mineral with high level of magnesium if
grass tetany has been a problem in the past.
0 Check for external parasites and treat if needed.
0 Maintain adequate nutrient level for cow herd.
0 Calve in well-drained pastures.
0 Survey pastures for poisonous plants.
0 Start summarizing your annual records, both
production and financial-then you will have time
to make adjustments for tax purposes.
0 Re-evaluate winter feeding program and feed
0 Get breeding soundness exams on bull battery
so you have time to find replacements if some
0 Implement bull conditioning program.
0 Review plans and arrangements for the upcoming
0 Check progress of developing replacement
heifers are they going to meet your target weight
by the start of the breeding season?
0 Begin grazing small grain pastures (if ready).
0 Check mineral feeder.
0 Check for external parasites and treat if needed.
0 Deworm cows and heifers prior to winter feeding
0 Observe regularly for calving difficulties.
0 Rotate calving pastures to prevent diseases.
0 Watch for scours in calves.
0 Investigate health of bulls before you buy.
0 Have dead animals posted by a veterinarian or
0 Complete review of management plan and update
for next year. Check replacement heifers to be
sure they will be ready to breed 3 4 weeks prior
to the main cow herd.
0 Apply lime for summer crops.
0 Check for lice and treat if necessary.
0 Control weeds in cool season pastures.
0 Begin grazing winter clover pastures when
approximately 6 inches high. Rye should be 12-
18 inches high.
0 Check mineral feeders.
0 Put bulls out for October calving season.
0 Make up breeding herd lists if using single sire
0 Watch for calf scours.
0 Give bulls extra feed and care so they will be in
condition for breeding season.
0 Make sure cow herd has access to adequate fresh
0 Buy only performance tested bulls with superior
0 Get taxes filed.
0 Discuss herd health with you veterinarian and
outline a program for the year.
0 Review herd health program with your
0 Carry a pocket notebook to record heat, breeding
abnormalities, discharges, abortions, retained
placentas, difficult calvings and other data.
0 Observe cow herd for calving difficulties.
0 Watch for grass tetany on winter pastures.
0 Increase magnesium levels in mineral mixes if
grass tetany has been previous problem (if you
are not already using a high magnesium mineral).
0 Examine bulls for breeding soundness and semen
quality prior to the breeding season.
0 Vaccinate cows and heifers against vibriosis and
leptospirosis prior to the breeding season.
UF Helps Launch New Food
Safety Institute of the Americas
To guard against unsafe food reaching
consumers in today's international marketplace, the
Food Safety Institute of the Americas is being
established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture
in cooperation with the University of Florida and
other participants in 31 nations of the hemisphere.
The institute, which will involve other
universities and organizations in the Western
Hemisphere, will be a forum for exchanging scientific
information, and developing and delivering education
to improve the safety of meat, poultry and egg
In Florida, USDA's Food Safety and Inspection
Service has entered into a cooperative agreement with
UF's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, or
UF/IFAS, and Miami Dade College to help launch
the international food safety program.
Under the agreement, UF will work in
partnership with Miami Dade College to develop
research and education programs for the food safety
institute, said Richard Jones, UF's interim senior vice
president for agriculture and natural resources.
"UF's Institute of Food and Agricultural
Sciences was selected to participate in the regional
food safety effort because of our expertise in food
safety, including our national leadership in the
HACCP (hazard analysis and critical control point)
food safety program," Jones said.
Linda Swacina, Executive Director of the Food
Safety Institute located at the Claude Pepper Federal
Building in Miami, said the program is the result of
a memorandum of understanding signed by USDA
and the Pan American Health Organization to
improve the safety of meat and poultry products
traded among the nations of the Western Hemisphere.
Doug Archer, a Professor in the UF/IFAS Food
Science and Human Nutrition Department, will be
the lead scientist in Gainesville, and Geoffrey
Gathercole, Director of Community Education at
Miami Dade College, will be his counterpart in South
Archer said the rapidly growing global food
market has created complex food safety and security
"With the rise in international trade, today's food
distribution system can have a tremendous impact
on the health of people in many nations," he said.
"This system delivers improved nutrition and wider
product selection to consumers, but it also increases
the possibility of unsafe food reaching a larger
population food-borne illness has no regard for state
or national borders."
Archer said nations in the Americas are part of
a regional community where food production and
distribution are closely entwined. To control risks
and ensure food safety and security in the region, an
open and effective exchange of information is
"The food safety institute will bring regional
resources together and serve as a focal point for
exchanging information to help protect our food
supply from farm to table," Archer said.
"While other groups have attempted to build
consortium to address food safety, these efforts do
not have an international focus," he said. "The food
safety institute will provide major outreach activities
to identify, develop and coordinate educational
programs and help implement science-based
international food safety standards."
In the Americas today, food safety varies
significantly, particularly with regard to regulatory
mechanisms, technical capacity and overall
sustainability, Archer said. A 2001 Inter-American
Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture analysis of
Doug Archer a Professor of Food Science and Human
Nutrition at the University ofFlorida, will be the lead
scientist in Gainesville for the U.S. Department of
Agriculture new Food Safety Institute of the Americas. The
institute, which includes participants from 31 nations in the
Western Hemisphere, is based in Miami and will help guard
against unsafe food reaching consumers in today '
international marketplace. (University ofFlorida/IFASfile
31 developing countries in the Americas indicated
that "institutional sustainability" is the largest
limiting factor in forging national food safety services
that address emerging threats and opportunities.
Archer said the Food Safety Institute will be
organized like a university, where subject matter
expertise is grouped in specialized "colleges." This
structure will become the framework for educational
programs, including Web-based information.
According to present plans, the Food Safety
Institute will have nine colleges covering
international food safety agreements, regulatory
studies, food protection programs, manufactured
foods, public health studies, animal and food
production studies, retail programs, laboratory
studies, and consumer education programs.
"During the initial phase of the program, our
goals include conducting a survey of public health
infrastructure in 31 countries of the Americas,
determining capabilities for delivering educational
materials in those countries and developing a three-
to five-year plan for sustaining the food safety
institute," Archer said.
Other UF/IFAS faculty participating in the Food
Safety Institute include Nayda Torres, a Professor and
Chair of the Family, Youth and Community Sciences
Department; Ron Schmidt, a Professor in the Food
Science and Human Nutrition Department; Steve
Sargent, a Professor in the Horticultural Sciences
Department; Terry Houser, an Assistant Professor in
the Animal Sciences Department; and Sally Williams,
an Associate Professor in the Animal Sciences
SOURCE: Douglas Archer
(352) 392-1991, Ext. 210
By: Chuck Woods
UF/IFAS, ICS, Gainesville, FL
(352) 392-1773, Ext. 281
Release October 28, 2004
Twenty $1,500 Beef
The National Cattlemen's Foundation
(NCF) and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME)
are offering $30,000 in scholarship monies to college
students pursuing careers in the beef industry. The
2005 CME Beef Industry Scholarship program will
award 20 students each a $1,500 scholarship. The
top winner will also receive an all expense paid trip
to the Cattle Industry Annual Convention and Trade
Show in San Antonio, Texas, Feb. 2-5.
Students applying for the scholarship may
pursue careers in agricultural education,
communications, production, research, or any area
involved with the beef industry. To be eligible, a
student must: 1) be enrolled as an undergraduate
student in a four-year institution for the entire 2005-
2006 academic year; 2) write a brief letter expressing
future career goals in the beef industry; 3) write a
750-word essay describing an issue confronting the
beef industry and offer a solution; 4) obtain two letters
of reference from current or former professor or
industry professionals; 5) prepare a cover sheet to
include name, current mailing address and phone
number, email, school name, year in school,
permanent mailing address and phone number; and
6) submit materials in a single envelope to: Chairman
Bob Josserand, National Cattlemen's Foundation,
9110 E. Nichols Ave., Centennial, CO 80112.
Essays will be judged on the basis of clarity of
expression, persuasiveness, originality, accuracy,
relevance of topic and the solutions offered.
Applications must be postmarked by Nov. 28.
Winners will be announced at the Cattle Industry
Annual Convention in February.
For a scholarship brochure, go to http://
www.nationalcattlemensfoundation.org or contact
Sue Dolph at (303) 694-0305 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
National Cattlemen's Foundation
Release -0 ctbe 19,2004
A Commissioner Bronson
1 Lauds Mutli Million Dollar
Infusion of Funds in Recovery
Aid to Florida Farmers and
Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services
Commissioner Charles H. Bronson today
commended President George W. Bush, Florida
Congressman Bill Young, Chairman of the U.S.
House appropriations committee as well as the rest
of the congressional delegation and Florida Governor
Jeb Bush for helping to secure more than $222
million dollars for Florida from the United States
Department of Agriculture (USDA) for additional
hurricane disaster relief.
The funds will provide assistance to local
governments in clearing debris from streams and
culverts and repairing damaged drainage facilities.
The funding will also be used to assist agricultural
producers in repairing conservation structures,
rebuilding fences and removing debris from
agricultural land and will help Bronson's Division
of Forestry restore forests and enhance fire
suppression resources critical to protecting citizens
and property. The money is being made available
from three separate programs at USDA.
Governor Jeb Bush joined Commissioner
Bronson in accepting the funds presented by Mark
Rey, USDA Under Secretary for Natural Resources
and the Environment during a press conference in
Florida is one of eight southeastern states to
benefit from a half billion dollar appropriation
included in the $13 billion dollar 2005 Emergency
Hurricane Supplemental Appropriations Act signed
by President Bush on October 13th. Commissioner
Bronson requested funding for these types of
programs in his crop disaster estimates sent to
Washington during and after the four hurricanes.
Florida's farmers and farm workers have been
devastated by back to back hurricanes that wiped out
crops, severely damaged nurseries, dairy and beef
cattle farms and generally wreaked havoc on our
agriculture industries," Bronson said. "Agriculture
is second only to tourism as a top industry in this
state and the money being made available today, in
addition to the individual crop disaster payments they
have already announced, will ensure our producers
are able to begin the process of getting their
operations back to where they were before the
More than $61 million dollars will come from
USDA's Farm Service Agency's Emergency
Conservation Program (ECP) to assist farmers in
restoring their farmland through debris removal and
rebuilding of fences and conservation structures. An
additional $120 million is being provided by the
Natural Resources Conservation Service Emergency
Watershed Protection Program (EWP) to restore
private agriculture land threatened by flooding and
severe erosion which can be detrimental to the
The U. S. Forest Service is providing more than
$40 million dollars to restore thousands of trees, trails
and the many roads damaged or destroyed by the
hurricanes. In addition, the funds will assist in the
restoration of recreation facilities enjoyed by the
public and the habitats of endangered species. More
than $34 million will go to the Department's Division
of Forestry for state and private forest recovery
programs and about $5 million will be used for debris
removal and infrastructure repairs in national forests.
The Division of Forestry's funding is distributed
with $15 million going to urban and community
forest, $10.5 million for fire prevention, mitigation,
training, and preparedness, and $8 million to assist
rural forest landowners with fire hazard reduction
and reforestation. This funding will go along way
toward helping the Division and local fire agencies
prepare for the upcoming fire season and allow work
to begin on restoring both our rural and urban forest.
"Our State and national forests sustained severe
damage in the storms and this money will go a long
way toward not only restoring these state treasures,
but enabling the Division and local fire agencies to
be prepared for potential wildfires that may result
from the large amounts of debris left behind by the
hurricanes," Bronson said. "It is imperative that we
get the debris cleaned up as quickly as possible to
mitigate the chances of runaway fires during the peak
The Department's Division of Forestry is
responsible for forest management in Florida as well
as wildfire prevention, mitigation and control
programs. There is concern that the debris left behind
by the hurricanes will dry out and create additional
fuel for wildfires.
SOURCE: Liz Compton
Florida Department of Agriculture
and Consumer Services
Release October 26, 2004
Management of Fall Body
Condition of Beef Cows
For each of three years (1997/98, 1998/99, and
1999/00), Alberta Agriculture beef specialists
conducted a winter feeding study to determine the
effect of fall body condition on winter feed
requirements of pregnant beef cows bred to calve in
April. In the fall of each year, cows were weighed,
body condition scored (BCS) on a 1 to 5 scale (1 =
thinnest, 5 = fattest), and backfat was measured using
ultrasound. Cows were then divided into BCS groups
to receive one of three treatments: 1) "thin" cows
(BCS of 2.3) were fed to gain condition; 2)
"moderate" cows (BCS of 3.0) were fed to maintain
condition; 3) "fleshy" cows (BCS of 3.6) were fed to
lose condition. Each of the dietary treatments was
formulated to target a BCS of 3.0 at calving time.
The trial lasted an average of 115 days each year.
The data revealed that the average value of one
condition score over a 115-day period was $36. Later,
during the winter of 2002/03, when weather was more
severe and feed costs were higher, the value of one
BCS was $58. The authors concluded that
management of fall body condition of beef cows has
an economic value and can reduce winter feed
requirements if cows go into winter in moderate or
fleshy condition (C. Weder and T. Yurchak. 2004.
Forages for Alberta's Livestock. Publication of
Alberta Agriculture, Food and Rural Development).
Effects of a Growth Implant,
Marbling EPD, Sex, and
Breedtype on Tenderness of
Montana State University researchers conducted
two experiments to determine the impacts of a growth
implant, marbling EPD, sex, and breedtype on beef
tenderness. The comparisons were: implant on entry
in feedlot (24 mg estradiol benzoate/120 mg
trenbolone acetate) versus no implant; Angus steers
from sires with high marbling EPDs versus steers
from sires with high retail product EPDs; steers
versus heifers; and British versus Continental
breedtype. Cattle were harvested when ultrasound
indicated that a majority had reached Low Choice
quality grade or higher. Steak tenderness was
measured by Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF).
* Implanted cattle had significantly heavier carcasses,
larger ribeyes, lower marbling scores, and higher
WBSF values than non-implanted cattle.
* Sire EPD did not affect any traits except for
marbling. Progeny of high marbling sires had
significantly higher marbling scores than progeny of
high retail product sires.
* Surprisingly, steaks from heifers were significantly
less tender than steaks from steers. These results
differ from most other studies.
* Breedtype did not affect marbling scores, but
Continental cattle had higher WBSF values than
British cattle. Interestingly, implants tended to have
a greater effect on increasing WBSF in Continental
cattle than in British cattle.
The authors concluded that use of an aggressive
growth implant on entry may decrease tenderness and
may contribute to added tenderness variability
because of different responses observed between
sexes and breedtypes under the conditions of this
study (Boles et al. 2004. Proc. Western Section,
Factors Affecting the Deposition
University of Illinois scientists recently
presented an excellent review of those factors that
influence the amount of intramuscular fat (marbling)
deposited in growing-finishing cattle. Following is
a brief summary of a few points covered in their
review (Berger et al. 2004. Proc., Certified Angus
* It is well-documented that certain populations of
cattle differ somewhat in their genetic ability to
deposit intramuscular fat (e.g., British vs.
* Calves that are started on a high energy, high starch
diet early in life deposit more marbling relative to
backfat than those started later in life (e.g., early-
weaned calves vs. long yearlings backgrounded prior
* Most of the fat cells in marbling come from
propionate, which is produced in higher amounts in
the rumens of cattle fed higher-grain diets.
Conversely, most fat cells in external fat come from
acetate, which is produced in higher amounts in the
rumens of cattle fed higher-forage diets.
* Higher dietary protein levels may increase marbling
by possibly improving starch digestion and
absorption from the small intestine, while
simultaneously increasing blood insulin and glucose,
thereby resulting in more propionate for the
production of fat cells in marbling.
O OOO OOOO OOOO OOOOOOOOO OO
Top Five Beef Packers
% of marketing
Company share (2003)
1. Tyson Foods, Springdale, AR
2. Cargill Meat Solutions, Wichita, KS
3. Swift & Co., Greeley, CO
4. National Beef Packing, Kansas City, MO
5. Smithfield Beef Group, Green Bay, WI
TOTAL TOP 5
SOURCE: Cattle Buyers Weekly, October 11, 2004.
Beef Cattle Research Update
Harlan Ritchie, Steven Rust, and
Beef Cattle Specialists
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI
Release Fall 2004
Smithfield Enters the Cattle
Feeding Business in a Big Way
Smithfield foods has purchased the Monfort
Feedyards from ConAgra. The deal includes the three
feedyards in Colorado and one in Idaho with well
over 350,000 head capacity. It appeared in recent
months that either Cactus Feeders or Smithfield
Foods would end up purchasing the former Monfort
yards. The purchase by Smithfield came as somewhat
of a surprise to many analysts as they have long held
that either the packing business or feedlots in
Colorado were a risky venture unless they were
combined or contractually united.
Speculation is rampant that this is just the
opening gambit for Smithfield as the feeding
enterprise does not mesh extremely well with their
current operations. Given their stated plans to become
a major player in the beef packing business, the
industry was ripe with speculation that Smithfield
has plans to purchase the Swift & Company plants.
Yet at this point, everything is merely speculation.
After the first of the year Smithfield foods will
become one of the nation's largest cattle feeding
entities. Given the current stage of the cattle cycle
there should be little doubt that Smithfield appears
to be making this move from a long-term and not
short-term financial perspective. The details of the
deal were not disclosed.
SOURCE: Troy Marshall
U.S. Meat and Poultry Supplies
According to Lakewood, CO-based LMIC
(Livestock Marketing Information Center), per capital
U.S. meat and poultry supplies will set a new record
in 2004, and is likely to set a new record again in
2006. At first glance, this sounds a little askew with
U.S. beef production numbers being very tight.
However, with the loss of our export markets all that
product that was being sent overseas must now be
consumed domestically. This is also the case for
poultry exports which are at their lowest levels since
1995 because of market disturbances.
Once again, LMIC's numbers validate how
demand and not supply has been driving the record
cattle prices that have been enjoyed over the last 12
months. The LMIC projects U.S. retail weight
consumption of red meat and poultry will be about
222.4 pounds in 2004, exceeding the previous record
set in 2002 by about 1.6 pounds. That number may
decline slightly in 2005 before increasing to about
223 Pounds in 2006. Contrary to common perception,
imports of meat and poultry imports have also been
record large. Record retail prices have encouraged
increased imports and the marketplace is adjusting
to a halt in fed and feeder imports and increased box
beef imports from Canada. Meanwhile, Canadian
cattlemen are experiencing insufficient packing
capacity and U. S. meat packers with plants in Canada
are reaping significant profits. While every cattlemen
cringes at the sound of record U.S. imports of meat
and poultry, as ironic as that might sound, it is usually
a very good indicator of profitability for U.S.
cattlemen. Obviously demand for imports increases
as supplies tighten and demand increases
domestically and vice-versa.
Guinea cows on the
farm of Tim Olson,