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Beef Industry Module

The learning objectives are as follows: Recognize how the beef cattle industry is divided and name key personnel in each division. Differentiate between management strategies at each stage of beef cattle production. Explain different feeding practices for each life stage within the beef cattle industry. List major diet components used for beef cattle for each life stage. This grain module is brought to you by the Iowa Grain Quality Initiative, and was produced by the former Crop Adviser Institute.

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Learning objective: Recognize how the beef industry is organized and explain different feeding practices for each life stage. Learn common diet components used for beef.

Introduction: Typically, beef cattle start on a cow-calf operation. After weaning they may be sent to a backgrounder operation, then to a feedlot.

Cow-calf operations: The goal of a cow-calf operation is to maintain a herd of healthy cows that will produce healthy calves each year. Calves are separated into replacement heifers and breeding bulls to be retained within the herd, with the bulk of calves sent to backgrounders or feedlots.

Backgrounder: Calves may be sent to a specialized backgrounding facility to acclimate them to the feedlot lifestyle. Not all producers choose to utilize this stage.

Feedlot: Feedlot operations add muscle and fat to the cattle through an energy dense diet until they are ready for harvest.

Harvesting and packing: The final phase is harvesting and packing. This is where the animal is processed into products desired by consumers.

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Publication Date: 09/2016

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