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Sign o' the times, as meatworks grid specs accept leaner cattle (26 Mar 2014)

Two millimetres. It isn't much in carcase fatness measurement terms, but it represents a very significant shift in export processor thinking.

As of yesterday, both of Australia's two largest beef processors will have direct consignment price grids that accept leaner grassfed export steers than they did previously.

JBS Australia was the first to move, adjusting its price grid for grassfed ox ............

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2013 bull sales: Your complete guide to how each breed fared (25 Nov 2013)

In a clear reflection of difficult cattle market conditions caused by drought, live export market restrictions and other challenges, prices paid for stud and herd bulls at auction this year were well down for the eight largest beef breeds used across the Australian beef industry.

Data collected as part of Beef Central's annual end-of-season summary show that without exception, average prices paid at auction for bulls throughout 2013 were back on last year's figures. But perhaps surprisingly, the trend was no more exaggerated in those breeds that are most directly exposed to the northern drought and live export market circumstances.

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2013 bull season: Big drops seen in numbers sold for many breeds (25 Nov 2013)

Beef Central's 2013 survey of bulls sold at auction reveals that the eight largest beef breeds were responsible for 17,440 bulls being placed with new owners during the year.

That's a decline of 1279 head on 2012 figures, which was regarded as probably a record for total number of bulls sold at auction.

With record high rates of female slaughter experienced across the two largest beef producing states, Queensland and NSW this year, it's little wonder that demand for bulls has been down, especially for spring mating, as opposed to autumn mating, more common in southern states.

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How the X-Box game console might lead to a new era in beef carcase assessment (5 Oct 2013)

NEW objective assessment technologies in various stages of development are showing the potential to change the landscape in the way carcases and even live animals are assessed and valued for meat yield, meat quality and fatness.

Meat & Livestock Australia's Dr Alex Ball, program manager for eating quality research and development, gave an outline of some of the new technologies while addressing a Cattle Council of Australia producer forum in Launceston recently.

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Cattle Council to explore new carcase language (4 Sep 2013)

The Cattle Council of Australia has announced it will explore the potential to create a new carcase assessment language from the ground up, in response to growing calls for a re-examination of existing carcase quality and yield indicators.

As highlighted on Beef Central in recent weeks, industry stakeholders have been calling for a whole-of-language review, not confined to specific problem areas like butt shape, but covering the entire spectrum of carcase yield and quality indicators used across kill-floor, chiller assessment and MSA grading.

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Butt shape part 3: Is it time for a broader grading/carcase assessment review? (22 Aug 2013)

A small, but vocal group of stakeholders, ranging from producers to meat scientists, support the view that it's time to re-examine the industry's AusMeat language and industry carcase assessment systems in general.

And the general opinion that's being formed is that that process should not be confined to specific 'problem areas' like butt shape, but should examine the entire spectrum of carcase yield and quality indicators used across kill-floor, chiller assessment and MSA grading.

The apparent inconsistencies exposed in the application of the butt shape carcase measurement, resulting in championship-standard 100-day grainfed competition entries being heavily discounted on price, could become a broader catalyst for change, they believe.

Beef Central More...

Butt shape part 2: A brief lesson in history (21 Aug 2013)

To better understand the presence of butt shape as a yield indicator in today's AusMeat language, it's worthwhile exploring the measurement's origins, and the industry politics surrounding its introduction 25 years ago.

Beef Central yesterday published an introductory article outlining recently-revived concerns about the use of butt shape as a pricing tool in some processor grids, and possible reasons for apparent irregularity in butt shape assessment during grading.

Later today, a third report will be filed, discussing prospects for a broader review of grading/carcase assessment systems, which some see as long overdue.

Beef Central More...

Butt profile: Weapons of Mass Discounting, or legitimate carcase sorting tool? (20 Aug 2013)

An episode during the recent Brisbane Show's commercial cattle competitions has rekindled a 25-year debate about the use of butt shape as a yield sorting tool in meatworks grid payment systems based on the industry's AusMeat language.

What appeared to be an unusually large number of cattle competing in Brisbane's large 100-day grainfed competition this month received substantial price discounts - as per the processor, JBS's normal grid pricing structures - after being assigned D butt shapes as part of the killfloor assessment process.

Of 478 cattle entered in the grainfed performance class, 33 carcases, or 7 percent, received a D butt shape assignment. Four of the seven Shorthorn carcases from the pen which won the competition's carcase quality division were in fact discounted on the basis of butt shape.

Beef Central More...

Feed Efficiency Research to Improve Beef Industry's Bottom Line (August 20, 2013)

Feedlot data shows improvements in feed efficiency have been slow in recent decades which has prompted Canadian scientists to look into the weight gain genetics of eight breeds.

The Cattle Site More...

Expression of Genes Controlling Fat Deposition in Two Genetically Diverse Beef Cattle Breeds Fed High or Low Silage Diets (August 06, 2013)

Beef producers looking to control fatty acid composition in beef cattle tissues should account for genetics when devising silage diets.

The Cattle Site More...

Adopting Genomics at the Ranch Level (July 16, 2013)

If genomics are going to be adopted it is up to the industry to demonstrate the benefits, says Vermilion rancher, Sean McGrath, an advocate of genetics testing. /p>

The Cattle Site More...

Observe Estrus in Cow Herd to Monitor Bull Fertility During Breeding Season (July 09, 2013)

Bull condition and fertility is paramount in successful breeding, which is why Bob Weaber, Cow-calf specialist at Kansas State University, is urging farmers to keep an eye on the bull through the breeding season and detect estrus in cows to monitor bull fertility.

The Cattle Site More...

Refreshing A.I. Basics Well Worth The Effort (July 02, 2013)

Stick to protocol to ensure effective insemination and make sure equipment is working correctly, urges Ryan Sterry, University of Wisconsin Agriculture Extension Agent.

The Cattle Site More...

Pasture Can Compensate (July 02, 2013)

Pushing feed into stores over winter has no benefits as liveweight gain shoots up when the summer grass arrives and cattle are turned out to pasture, say Edward O'Riordan, Mark McGee and Declan Marren of Teagasc.

The Cattle Site More...

Australia Beef Association Investigation into the Efficacy of Identification Scheme (June 04, 2013)

Eight years since its introduction, the ABA has appraised the efficacy of radio frequency based tagging, concluding that more than a third of animals did not have full traceability

The Cattle Site More...

Heat Stress During the Dry Period Affects Calves Too (May 14, 2013)

Research from the University of Florida shows that calves exposed to heat stress before birth have lower birth weights and compromised immunity.

The Cattle Site More...

Featured Articles Why Do the Heifers Get to Decide Who Breeds the Cows? (April 30, 2013)

Beef farming in Ohio is made up of many 'small' farmers, according to John Grimes, Extension Beef Coordinator at Ohio State University who says this means bull selection is dominated by one thing - ease of calving.

The Cattle Site More...

Carcass-Based Measures of Cattle Performance and Feeding Profitability (April 23, 2013)

Widely used metrics for comparing cattle growth could be up for review after research has shown that current factors provide biased estimates for cattle sold on a carcass basis, write J. D. Tatum , W. J. Platter , J. L. Bargen , and R. A. Endsley.

The Cattle Site More...

Is it Time to Re-think Weaning? (March 19, 2013)

With massive impacts on cow stress and calf impacts further down the line, it is important to get weaning right, says Joe Stookey, researcher and professor of animal behavior at the University of Saskatchewan.

The Cattle Site More...

Bull Nutrition- Achieving Yearling Breeding (March 06, 2013)

'Letting down' conditioned bulls, building up underweight bulls and the importance of annual nutritional plans are discussed by beef specialists at South Dakota University.

The Cattle Site More...

Can We Rebuild the Cow Herd? Part 3 (January 23, 2013)

Following considerable drops in US cattle numbers, Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist addresses the issue of rebuilding in the final part of three installments.

The Cattle Site More...

Genotyping test for livestock comes to Australia (22 Jan 2013)

State-of-the-art testing to measure genetic variations in livestock, and to identify inherited diseases within herds, will soon be available in Australia at The University of Queensland's Animal Genetics Laboratory.

The Animal Genetics Laboratory in UQ's School of Veterinary Science last week signed a service agreement with Nebraska-based agri-genomics company, GeneSeek Inc, a Neogen Company, to become the Australian supplier of their genotyping technology.

Geneseek's Genomic Profilers are SNP (single nucleotide polymorphism) genotyping products used to test for a variety of genetic conditions in livestock from a single sample.

Beef Central More...

The Evolution of New Beef Cuts - Part 2 (January 15, 2013)

In conclusion to last weeks article B. Lynn Gordon, of South Dakota State University, rounds off her discussion of innovation in the butchering sector that sought to create value from beef cuts in a depressed market.

The Cattle Site More...

Can We Rebuild the Cow Herd? Part 2 (January 15, 2013)

Following considerable drops in US cattle numbers, Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist addresses the issue of rebuilding in the second part of three installments.

The Cattle Site More...

Can We Rebuild the Beef Cow Herd? Part 1 (January 08, 2013)

Following considerable drops in US cattle numbers, Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension Livestock Marketing Specialist addresses the issue of rebuilding in the first part of three installments.

The Cattle Site More...

More Govt support for carbon abatement project (20 December 2012)

Another large Australian meat processor has received Federal Government support for carbon abatement work, continuing a recent series of similar project approvals.

Low Carbon Australia finance was announced today for an industrial refrigeration upgrade to help the Rivalea abattoir at Corowa in NSW save energy, improve business and reduce its impact on the environmen

Beef Central More...

More on summertime productivity, pen shade and coat-colour (19 December 2012)

Whether it’s just Christmas approaching and people have more time on their hands, or whether the topic was of particularly timely seasonal interest, Monday’s Beef Central article on feedlot productivity, pen shade and coat colour has stimulated unusually strong reader feedback.

Beef Central More...

Cattle productivity: does pen shade, coat colour matter in summer? (17 December 2012)

The articles explores the relationship between pen shade, coat colour, and the effect on productivity in hot conditions.

While darker coat colour does appear to adversely impact productivity, breed also plays a significant part.

Beef Central More...

Host of factors contribute to high feedlot gain performance (11 December 2012)

What are the contributing factors behind extreme feedlot cattle performance?

This morning Beef Central continues the second half of yesterday’s report on a record-setting pen of 168 Shorthorn x Angus and Angus 100-day steers fed recently at Grassdale feedlot near Dalby, which closed-out last week having produced an average daily gain of 2.74kg.

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Grassdale's record breakers bend the ADG curve (10 December 2012)

A combination of ideal feeding conditions and quality breeding and management has delivered a near-record daily gain performance result at Grassdale feedlot on Queensland’s Darling Downs.

A mob of 168 Shorthorn x Angus and straight Angus steers recently custom-fed for McNicholl Family Trust, Dulacca, produced an average daily gain of 2.74kg over 102 days, at close-out from the feedlot early last week.

Beef Central More...

Cracking Coles’ market (5 December 2012)

A TASTE for quality meat turned off at an earlier age is driving higher demand for European-cross cattle from Coles supermarkets.

Coles’ national livestock manager Dale Pemberton said the company was finding meat from cattle containing 25 to 50 per cent European influence was delivering a product that suited Coles requirements without the use of hormone growth promotants (HGPs).

..

A typical Coles animal weighs between 220 and 280 kilograms (carcase weight) with five to 12 millimetres of fat.

“Our average Coles carcase averages 245kg with 5mm to 12mm fat, and we find the European-cross meets these specs,” Mr Pemberton said.

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BJD in the beef industry: An LHPA vet's view (27 November 2012)

Why do district vets spend a disproportionate amount of time working to control a disease that kills less beef cattle than lightning strike? Tablelands Senior District Vet with the NSW Livestock Health and Pesticides Authority LHPA vet Bruce Watt offers his perspective.

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2012 bull season: Angus top breed price averages for first time (27 November 2012)

Statistics compiled by Beef Central this week from breed society and other records have revealed that Angus bulls sold at auction across Australia in 2012 delivered an average price for their breeders of $5657.

That's a hefty 7.8 percent jump on last year, and about $120 better than second placed breed, Shorthorn ($5538).

Beef Central More...

MSA changes worrying (23 November 2012)

PRODUCERS are worried about the new Meat Standards Australia (MSA) grading system saying it will encourage retailers and shoppers to pay less for lower graded beef.

Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) general manager industry systems Michelle Gormann outlined plans for the new version of MSA grading at MLA's Perth meeting.

All beef products will be valued out of a score of 100.

Any product receiving a score of 46 points or more would be MSA-graded - more than 64 points attracts a four star grading and a score of more than 77 is graded five star.

Stock Journal More...

Calm cattle have a dark side, researchers find (19 November 2012)

The findings of a recent study conducted by Murdoch University researchers has challenged the long-held belief within the beef industry that flighty or stirry cattle are at a higher risk of producing dark, less tender and drier meat.

Working in conjunction with the WA Department of Agriculture and Food and Tammin (WA) feedlot operator Ivan Rogers' Kylagh Cattle Co, two researchers found that calm cattle were not exempt from the issue of dark cutting.

Beef Central More...

Red meat 'not a killer' after all (17 November 2012)

RED meat, long targeted as a factor in decreased life expectancy, may be getting a break.

Scientific American has taken a look at the evidence for red meat's poor health image in its "Science of Health" section, and found the story might not be as straightforward as has been portrayed in thousands of media stories.

The article's author, Ferris Jabr, wrote that it might not be red meat that is the problem, but what happens to it.

Stock Journal More...

Trial will gauge value of new MSA carcase index model (15 November 2012)

A group of Meat Standards Australia-licensed processors will participate in a four-month trial as part of a significant change to the MSA process, which would see the current boning group approach to sorting carcases replaced by a more efficient and accurate index-based model.

The carcase index would combine quality and yield estimates to better reflect differences in carcase quality. Currently, boning groups are used within MSA as a de facto measure of carcase quality, but in reality are only a crude descriptor of quality.

Beef Central More...

Which traits are right for you? (26 October 2012)

Tapping into genetic progress is an extremely valuable way of maintaining and building productivity and profitability for every livestock producer. Genetic progress is mainly delivered by the studs that breed and sell bulls and rams. Studs that use BREEDPLAN and Sheep Genetics can measure the progress they are making in a wide range of traits.

Many livestock producers and stud breeders have a picture in their mind of the perfect animal. It may have the perfect blend of reproductive and carcase traits, or it may strike the fine balance between eating quality and yield. The challenge that all producers face is how to produce animals that come close to these ideals, and how to best use genetics to tailor their herd or flock to their target markets.

MLA Blog More...

Boxed beef not viable: Thorne (18 October 2012)

SPECIALIST agribusiness lawyer Trent Thorne says the boxed beef trade's viability is one of several myths used to support demands for the live cattle trade's demise while being touted as a means of improving animal welfare.

Mr Thorne, of Brisbane's McCullough Robertson lawyers, said the Federal Government's snap suspension of the live cattle trade to Indonesia last June caused an escalation in misinformed debate around the industry, especially in social media.

North Queensland Register More...

Carcase Index proposal would replace MSA's boning groups (10 October 2012)

Industry stakeholder groups are considering a significant change to the Meat Standards Australia process, which would see the current boning group approach to sorting carcases replaced by a more efficient and accurate linear, index-based model.

The carcase index would combine quality and yield estimates to better reflect differences in carcase quality. Currently, boning groups are being used as a de facto measure of carcase quality, but in reality are only a crude descriptor of quality, MSA meat scientists say.

Beef Central More...

Processors' carbon disadvantage exposed (9 October 2012)

Recent assessments of the impact of carbon pricing on the red meat processing industry have found that in the absence of any abatement technologies, the industry will experience a fall of 7.2 percent in total gross operating surplus.

That’s worth more than $29 million a year in 2010-2011 dollar values.

Beef Central More...

Rib fat genetics and fertility (5 October 2012)

A clearer understanding of the relationship between Rib Fat EBV and fertility was an outcome from Beef CRC research.

Research from the Beef CRC's Maternal Productivity Program, led by Associate Professor Wayne Pitchford, has shed more light on the association between BREEDPLAN Rib Fat EBV and cow reproductive rate.

MLA More...

Poor Temperment Could Mean Poor Performance (24 Sep 2012)

Temperamental cattle can be a hazard to themselves and to the people handling them as well as to other cattle. Compared to calm cattle, cattle exhibiting a heightened temperament are noted to spend more time inspecting their surroundings or responding to environmental “fears” instead of consuming forage or supplements, writes Dr Jeremy Powell from University of Arkansas.

The Beef Site More...

Technology: New App makes bull buying easier (21 Sep 2012)

Bull buyers now have access to a new piece of technology that enables them to easily access a range of information on their mobile phone when evaluating prospective bull purchases. The newly released INSolutions mobile App has been developed by the Agricultural Business Research Institute in Armidale.

Beef Central More...

Gains from genomics (20 Sep 2012)

Whether or not they support or understand it, all beef breeders will gain from the Beef Information Nucleus research, suggests northern NSW seedstock producer Matt Friend. “Whether you believe in EBVs or not, the beef industry is a winner from the work being done through the Beef Information Nucleus herds on production traits and eventually their DNA markers,” he said.

MLA More... 

Calving ease - the impact of genetics (14 Sep 2012)

Many beef herds will have started calving by now and I have already reviewed one case where more than half of first calf heifers have had to be assisted so far. Such a situation prompts a review of ‘what went wrong’.

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The right genes for the job ( 31 Aug 2012)

MLA’s R&D Manager Rob Banks told the Southern WA Meat Profit Day that getting the right genes for the right jobs you want your animals to do is simple and very valuable.

MLA More ...

Govt carbon tax move has little direct bearing on beef ( 30 Aug 2012)

The Federal Government’s decision to dump its carbon floor price due to come into effect in 2015 will have little direct short to medium-term impact on the beef industry, stakeholders close to the carbon tax issue say.

The surprise announcement on Tuesday, interpreted by some commentators as a major back-down over the unpopular carbon tax, means Australia’s future carbon price will be set by the European market, which yesterday was trading at about $8 a tonne.

MLA More ...

Excessive heat increases premature calving risk (21 Aug 2012)

Excessive summer heat can shorten the gestation time for beef cattle and trigger a greater incidence of premature births, according to research by Oklahoma State University's Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources.

Beef Central More...

Genetic Selection Opportunities to Improve Feed Efficiency (August 20, 2013)

Higher feed costs could jeapordise productivity if farmers do not tackle feed efficiency properly, according to Chad Dechow of Penn State University.

The Cattle Site More...

SNP Chip - Revolutionising genetics (17 August 2012)

After lurking in the background of the meat industry for more than a decade, the SNP chip is ready to make its presence truly felt. Here Friday Feedback talks about this example of 'transformational' R&D?

MLA More...

Casino bull hits $9500 record (30 Jul 2012)

A NEW record was set for the Limousin breed at the big annual Casino All Breeds Bull and Female Sale on Saturday. A bull from Grant Shedden’s Ainskerbeau stud at Greenridge made $9500 to top the sale.

The Land More...

Changing the livestock menu (27 Jul 2012)

NEW understanding of animal behaviour can transform the economics of raising livestock, and the landscapes they are raised on, American researcher Fred Provenza believes. The Wildlands Resources Emeritus Professor at Utah State University, Dr Provenza has spent decades digging deep into animal learning and behaviour.

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How science is helping meet demands for greater meat sustainability (3 Jul 2012)

Sustainability as it applies to the red meat processing sector is about so much more than transport and energy use, argues Dr Robyn Warner, from CSIRO Food and Nutritional Sciences.

Adopting a broad definition of sustainability, CSIRO is researching a number of different areas where the Australian meat industry could become more efficient.

One of the first challenges for meat companies developing sustainable strategies is how to define sustainability.

Stock Journal More...

Muscle up your herd for better returns (15 Jun 2012)

NCREASING muscling in your herd can substantially improve returns without compromising growth, feed efficiency or any reproductive traits, recent research has found. According to an MLA and Beef CRC-funded project, for each unit of improvement in muscle score (eg D to C), producers can expect a 15–21c/kg increase in price received at live cattle sales.

MLA More...

Metabolic health could be a key to fertility in heifers and cows (4 Jun 2012)

There has been discussion on Beef Central recently on the relationships between body condition and fertility in heifers and cows. What underpins these relationships? Well, body condition reflects the general metabolic health of cattle and also fat reserves (energy reserves).

Beef Central More...

Condition scoring helps cash flow from cows (25 May 2012)

Investing in nutrition and genetics to improve cow condition at calving can directly increase annual farm income. The MLA-supported Cash Cow study of more than 30,000 breeders in northern Australia found that breeder cow condition significantly influenced a cow’s ability to conceive again.

MLA More...

Carcases bigger than ever (24 May 2012)

NATIONAL average carcase weights have reached a record high of 289 kilograms per head fuelled by wet seasons during the past two years. According to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics and Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA), the national average carcase weight of 289kg/head recorded during the March quarter this year was 5 per cent above the five-year average.

The Land More...

Fat chance for heifers (20 May 2012)

SCIENCE has endorsed the practice of culling heifers that don't get into calf at their first joining, but not for the reasons that producers might expect. It's all a function of fat, South Australian Beef CRC scientist Wayne Pitchford told this month's Beef 2012 genetics conference.

Stock Journal More...

Muscle finds favour in beef (10 May 2012)

NEW research on beef quality has dispelled many of the myths around selecting traits for muscle. A Beef Cooperative Research Centre study reported in the latest edition of the Beef Bulletin, found selecting for traits which would lead to more muscle does not come at the cost of other traits.

Weekly Times Now More...

World-first genomic breeding values unveiled at Beef 2012 (7 May 2012)

Beef CRC Chief Scientist Professor Mike Goddard will today announce the results of the CRC’s key beef cattle genomics research program – the delivery of genomic breeding values for key beef production and market traits across Australian beef cattle breeds.

Beef Central More...

Feedlot profits on the slide (2 May 2012)

FEEDLOT closures and "for sale" signs at numerous yards both in Victoria and interstate all point to one conclusion. If your beak it down its difficult to make a profit from grain-feeding cattle or lambs.

Weekly Times Now More...

Who are animal scientists serving? (18 Apr 2012)

The American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) has responded to media claims that US animal scientists are being inappropriately influenced by direct payments from pharmaceutical companies, saying such assertions misrepresent the relationship between animal agriculture and industry.

Beef Central More...

Modern cattle trace back to herd of 80 (10 Apr 2012)

ALL cattle are descended from as few as 80 animals that were domesticated from wild ox in the Middle East some 10,500 years ago, according to a new genetic study. And it wasn’t easy, because the ancestors of today’s global cattle herd were big and fierce and difficult for a nomadic people to manage successfully – hence the relatively small number originally tamed.

The Land More...

Lack of fertility in cows linked to mysterious male DNA (10 Apr 2012)

The genomes of cows that have difficulty reproducing often contain fragments of the male Y chromosome, according to a new study published in the April 2012 edition of the Journal of Animal Science. The researchers say this finding could help cattle producers identify subfertile females before investing time and resources on breeding attempts.

Beef Central More...

Linking Expressed Genome to Environment: Epigenetics (9 Apr 2012)

Epigenetics refers to the study of heritable changes in genome function that occur without affecting DNA sequences. These changes result from the apposition of molecular marks that remain over several cell divisions onto the genome. Epigenetics deals with the study of how environmental factors can change the way genes are expressed.

The Beef Site More...

Epigenetics: A new Challenge in the Post-Genomic Era (28 Mar 2012)

Livestock genetics is currently navigating through a genomic era promoted by advances in DNA technologies. There is, however, a promising field that has not yet been tackled in livestock breeding and genetics: epigenetics.

The Beef Site More...

Epigenetics: The Next Frontier in Livestock Genetics (28 Mar 2012)

While controversial, epigenetics does appear to offer potentially significant value to livestock genetic programmes, say the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency (ALMA) and GenomeAlberta. It makes sense that manipulating both DNA and the epigenomes could add significant value to overall livestock genetics efforts. What doesn’t make sense is that such has yet to be explored on any appreciable scale.

The Beef Site More...

Carcase merit, profit in young bull meat better than expected (20 Feb 2012)

It’s long been known that there are growth rate efficiencies to be found in young bulls. The Europeans have been successfully producing beef from entire young male cattle instead of steers for centuries.

Beef Central More...

Research: Genetic link in reducing greenhouse gas emissions (9 Feb 2012)

Researchers in NSW are contributing to a project which aims to reduce agricultural greenhouse emissions by reducing the amount of methane belched by beef cattle.

Beef Central More...

Reids' faith in Limousins (7 Feb 2012)

AFTER a lifetime of dairying and breeding stud Jerseys, Robert Reid could have been forgiven for hanging up his work boots.

But the 70-year-old has re-invented himself as a stud Limousin breeder, supplying bulls into the fertile North East valleys for vealer production.

Weekly Times More ...

Finishing systems put to economic test (2 feb 2012)

A three-year trial underway in Queensland is examining the economics of four different finishing systems for cattle - improved pastures, leucaena, oats and grain feeding.

Beef Central More...

US herd decline our gain (2 Feb 2012)

A BIGGER than expected drop in the US herd may offer a small reprieve for Australian beef exporters facing falls in Japan and Korea, analysis suggests.

The US industry is still reeling after a USDA report counted beef cattle numbers at their lowest in 60 years.

Stock Journal More...

Research cherry-picks beef (30 Jan 2012)

MUSCULAR cattle are more likely to produce the cherry-red coloured steaks preferred by consumers, according to new Beef CRC research conducted at Murdoch University.

Queensland Register More ...

Beef production to reach record high (24 Jan 2012)

BEEF and veal production will reach a record 2.197 million tonnes in 2012, up 2.2 per cent on 2011.

The industry's forward projections released by Meat and Livestock Australia yesterday attribute the production climb to the run of good seasons that have favoured the grazing sector since 2010.

Stock Journal More...

Breedplan beef up on track (20 Jan 2012)

Cattle producers will soon be able to more accurately identify animals with superior genetics for a range of commercially important traits.

The Beef CRC and Meat and Livestock Australia have announced that the new genomic predictions for carcase and beef quality, feed efficiency and female fertility traits such as puberty, first-calf re-breeding and lifetime reproductive performance in tropically adapted cattle breeds will be incorporated into Breedplan from May of this year.

Beef Central More...

Research: fatness can impact on heifer conceptions (13 Jan 2012)

Selecting for low rib fat as a way of boosting carcase meat yield may be linked to a reduction in maiden heifer conception, research conducted in the Beef CRC Maternal Productivity project indicates.

The project work, led by associate Professor Wayne Pitchford of the University of Adelaide, found that selecting for low rib fat Estimated Breeding Values to boost carcase meat yield reduced maiden heifer conception rates by more than 8 percent.

Beef Central More...

Weight, nutrition and finishing regime impact on dark-cutting (9 Jan 2012)

Carcase weight and rib fat depth have been found to strongly influence the presence of dark-cutting in carcases in a research project completed recently at Murdoch University.

Beef Central More...

Draft national dietary guidelines recommend lean red meat (16 Dec 2011)

The new draft national dietary guidelines continue to recommend lean red meat as a nutritious food and part of a healthy diet.

In a move welcomed by the National Farmers’ Federation, the draft guidelines revised by the National Health and Medical Research Centre (NHMRC) do not refer to the environmental sustainability of individual foods. Instead, the need for expert advice and consideration of the Australian context of food production is acknowledged in considering the environmental impact of food choices.

Meat & Livestock Australia More ...

Research: Muscling part of dark-cutting complex (12 Dec 2011)

More heavily muscled cattle are more likely to produce the cherry-red coloured steaks preferred by consumers, according to new Beef CRC research conducted at Murdoch University.

Meat displaying the trait of ‘dark-cutting’ was very dark in colour, dry to the taste, spoiled quickly and had variable tenderness, said Beef CRC researcher Dr Peter McGilchrist, a lecturer in Production Animal Health and Management at Murdoch University.

Dr McGilchrist’s research discovered that increased muscularity in beef cattle is strongly associated with a reduction in dark cutting, a Beef CRC release issued this morning said: “The relationship between increased muscling and reduced dark cutting is a very important finding for the beef industry,” Dr McGilchrist said.

Beef Central More ...

Limousin dominant in the UK (3 Dec 2011)

UK focus on quality over past two decades reinforces Limousin's dominance, according to a recent survey.

More ...

Kyneton sale topped again by Limousin (2 Dec 2011)

Leon Martin (Le Martres Limousin Stud) is believed to have topped the Kyneton store sale again on 30 November with:

Market Research (updated 1 Dec 2011)

Market research conducted in December 2010 by Limousin Muscle Alliance members indicates that the weekly demand for high grade Limousin weaners and yearlings far exceeds demand throughout Eastern Australia.

This research identified the following numbers required weekly in the three States:

These numbers will increase as more processors, wholesalers and butchers are identified. A high percentage of the above numbers is for the very lean (2- 4mm fat) types required by Asian and European restaurants and communities.

Business model holds back genomics (27 Sep 2011)

Some of the cattle breeders most heavily invested in genetics are taking a wait-and-see approach to genomics. They understand the technology's potential, but are waiting for a business model that will deliver them value.

The Land More...

DNA critical point for beef (21 Sep 2011)

THE beef industry is at a critical point where it must choose between the potential for dramatic transformation, or the incremental gains of business-as-usual.

The Land More...

Lots of cattle needed for genomics data (20 Sep 2011)

HOW much information will the beef industry need to collect to make genomics worthwhile? Lots, especially in the "discovery" phase, where traits are being identified and calibrated. After that, less, but still lots. "We really need big datasets to confidently predict the effect of DNA markers," said geneticist Ben Hayes of the discovery phase. "And I don't mean just big. I mean enormous. We need tens of thousands of individuals to make it work."

The Land More...

Making the most of cattle DNA testing (19 Sep 2011)

RIGHT now, researchers say, most DNA testing for breeding selection of beef cattle doesn't deliver much added value because the accuracies of tests are still low. But as the pork and chicken industries testify, and some beef research modelling confirmed, that's not the fault of genomics, but a sign of the science's lack of maturity in beef cattle.

The Land More...

Time for beef genomics restructure (18 Sep 2011)

IF IT is going to capitalise on genomics, the beef industry will almost certainly need to restructure in ways that break completely with tradition.

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Genetic Marker Technology In The Dairy Industry (24 Nov 2009)

SNP stands for “single nucleotide polymorphism” or, literally, differences between individuals in a population in the nucleotide structure of DNA at a single point. The device that measures all these SNPs is called the Illuminia Bovine SNP50 beadchip. What this technology does is reveal the genetic makeup of individual animals at about 50,000 locations in their DNA.

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