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Cattlemen's Boot Camp gives take-home ideas on beef genetics

A Cattlemen’s Boot Camp aims to help producers gain more profits from beef herds. The meeting, July 14 to 15 at the University of Missouri, helps beginners and advanced breeders.

“There’s new technology on the shelf that can boost profits,” says Jared Decker, MU Extension geneticist. “Owners can take these ideas home and use them.”

Ideas range from better forage management to carcass traits that bring premium prices, he says.

The American Angus Association sponsors the boot camp with MU specialists. The program is for all producers, commercial or purebred.

Leaders from the beef business will add ideas to improve herd performance. Angus leaders will guide a sire-selection session after dinner the first day.

Leaders from Certified Angus Beef will tell the value of branded beef.

Emphasis will be on advances in beef genetics, Decker says. “Genomic technology allows reliable decisions in selecting animals to produce that next calf crop.”

The camp comes at a time when calf prices set record highs each week. A six-decade decline in cow numbers creates a short supply of beef. Also, consumer demand for quality beef grows.

Decker says, “With high prices, this a good time to adopt new technology. The boot camp gives a variety of tools that work. And they’re available.”

Decker will tell “How and Why of Genomic Enhanced EPDs.” Tests reveal genetics that enhance progeny differences.

He’ll be followed by David Patterson, MU Extension reproduction specialist. He will tell of research that led to the Show-Me-Select Heifer program. That work came from the MU Thompson Farm of the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources.

MU economist Scott Brown will show values of producing USDA prime beef and of retaining heifers.

Carol Lorenzen, MU meat specialist, will take the group into her lab to see carcass cuts.

Allison Meyer, new to the MU faculty, will tell how fetal programming of a calf in a cow affects final carcass traits. Pregnant-cow nutrition gives lifelong effect to the calf.

On the second day, the camp moves to the MU Beef Research and Teaching Farm, where Justin Sexten will show grass management.

Craig Payne, MU Extension veterinarian, will tell of antibiotic labeling.

Registration can be made online at The camp hotel is the Hampton Inn, 573-214-2222.

Date: 6/30/2014


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