TEST AND WEIGH TO
MAKE BEEF CATTLE PAY
R. L. REDDISH
ASSOCIATE MEATS SPECIALIST
J. E. PACE
$ fat-1/3 In, thick
RIB EYE- 13 sq inches
AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION SERVICE
INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURAL SCIENCES
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA, GAINESVILLE
TEST AND WEIGH TO MAKE
BEEF CATTLE PAY
R. L. Reddish
Associate Meats Specialist
J. E. Pace
Carcass tests can supplement production in-
formation and give producers more specifications
on their herd.
Valuable carcass information can be easily ob-
tained from steers and heifers in production
This carcass information will help in many
1. You can easily and accurately tell which
cows and bulls are producing those meaty, high
2. Carcasses lacking in meatiness or quality
can be traced to the parents.
3. If you are producing a large number of high
quality, meaty cattle carcasses you have sufficient
proof to ask for a higher price.
4. Carcass information will enable you to make
the necessary changes in order to produce higher
quality beef. For example if a large number of
your cattle carcasses grade low because they lack
marbling in the rib eye, meatiness in the carcass
or rib eye then the record shows it accurately.
5. Information obtained from carcass evalua-
tion will aid tremendously in selecting better bulls
and eliminating poor carcass producing cows and
6. Better carcasses demand, and bring, higher
prices, especially when sold on a grade and yield
How to Begin Your Carcass Testing Program
Step 1. Enroll in the production testing program.
Step 2. At weaning time get a gate cut of 10% of
the steer calves, not less than 5 or more
than 100 steers from one herd are re-
Step 3. These steer calves can be fed at the ranch
or in a commercial feed lot according to
the production testing feeding require-
Step 4. Contact the Florida Agricultural Exten-
sion Specialist in charge of production
testing or your County Agricultural
Step 5. Ask him to explain how you can get car-
cass information on your production
Step 6. The Extension specialist will assist in
helping you select the cattle and fulfill
the other requirements for feeding and
finishing the cattle.
Step 7. Carcass data will be collected by the
federal meat grader and one or more of
the following: Cattle owner, Extension
specialist, county agent and meat pack-
ing plant personnel.
Step 8. Study carefully "Agreements and Under-
standing Between Meatpacker Buyer and
Producer for Carcass Data."
Step 9. The Florida Agricultural Extension Ser-
vice will compute the necessary values
and prepare a summary on the electronic
computing machine when the records are
Agreements and Understanding Between
Meatpacker Buyer and Producer
For Carcass Data
1. All cattle must be identified individually.
2. Cattle slaughtered at a plant which has "Fed-
eral Beef Grading."
3. All carcasses must be "ribbed" and graded by
a federal grader.
4. All cattle slaughtered on the same day and
graded approximately 48 hours later.
5. Producer must be informed when the cattle
will be slaughtered and when they will be
6. Producer or Extension specialist or both must
be present when cattle carcasses are graded
in order to obtain the necessary information.
7. Producer and packer buyer should consider and
understand the above before the cattle are
Carcass Data To Be Collected
Individual live weights
Chilled carcass weight
Rib eye area
Fat thickness over rib eye
Percent (kidney, heart, caul, pelvic fat)
Cutability per cent
Texture of lean
Color of lean
Factors contributing to high grading carcasses-
Factors contributing to low grading carcasses_
1. The Federal meat grading service will charge
on an hourly fee rate of $7.80 per hour for grad-
ing the cattle carcasses. This cost will be paid by
the owner of the cattle.
2. Charge for processing, computing and sum-
marizing the data will be approximately fifty cents
3. For additional information or answers to
Extension Animal Husbandman
Florida Agricultural Extension Service
University of Florida
Room 258, McCarty Hall
Gainesville, Florida 32601
or contact your county agent.
COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORK IN AGRICULTURE
AND HOME ECONOMICS
(Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914)
Agricultural Extension Service, University of Florida,
and United States Department of Agriculture, Cooperating
M. O. Watkins, Director