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Feeding cattle: How long?

Kelly Bruns, professor of Animal Science at SDSU, Kelly Bruns, professor of Animal Science at SDSU, explains why cattle are being fed to heavier weights than ever before at a recent feedlot meeting hosted by the South Dakota Cooperative Extension Service. Photo by Amanda Nolz

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USDA Yield Grade 4s and 5s seem commonplace in the packing industry today, just as 1,400- to 1,500-lb. steers are often seen lumbering through the auction ring at the sale barn. Today’s beef cattle are heavier than ever before, and for many, the deciding factors to feed longer help producers gain extra dollars.

Whether it’s meeting the demands of a premium program such as Certified Angus Beef (CAB) or deriving extra dollars from an extra 100 lbs. of weight on a steer, feedlot owners are increasingly aware of ways to keep their financial records out of the red. While discounts for heavy, fat carcasses used to be high, Kelly Bruns, professor of Animal Science at South Dakota State University (SDSU) said holding steers is sometimes the best option anyway.

USDA Yield Grade 4s and 5s seem commonplace in the packing industry today, just as 1,400- to 1,500-lb. steers are often seen lumbering through the auction ring at the sale barn. Today’s beef cattle are heavier than ever before, and for many, the deciding factors to feed longer help producers gain extra dollars.



Whether it’s meeting the demands of a premium program such as Certified Angus Beef (CAB) or deriving extra dollars from an extra 100 lbs. of weight on a steer, feedlot owners are increasingly aware of ways to keep their financial records out of the red. While discounts for heavy, fat carcasses used to be high, Kelly Bruns, professor of Animal Science at South Dakota State University (SDSU) said holding steers is sometimes the best option anyway.

USDA Yield Grade 4s and 5s seem commonplace in the packing industry today, just as 1,400- to 1,500-lb. steers are often seen lumbering through the auction ring at the sale barn. Today’s beef cattle are heavier than ever before, and for many, the deciding factors to feed longer help producers gain extra dollars.



Whether it’s meeting the demands of a premium program such as Certified Angus Beef (CAB) or deriving extra dollars from an extra 100 lbs. of weight on a steer, feedlot owners are increasingly aware of ways to keep their financial records out of the red. While discounts for heavy, fat carcasses used to be high, Kelly Bruns, professor of Animal Science at South Dakota State University (SDSU) said holding steers is sometimes the best option anyway.

USDA Yield Grade 4s and 5s seem commonplace in the packing industry today, just as 1,400- to 1,500-lb. steers are often seen lumbering through the auction ring at the sale barn. Today’s beef cattle are heavier than ever before, and for many, the deciding factors to feed longer help producers gain extra dollars.

Whether it’s meeting the demands of a premium program such as Certified Angus Beef (CAB) or deriving extra dollars from an extra 100 lbs. of weight on a steer, feedlot owners are increasingly aware of ways to keep their financial records out of the red. While discounts for heavy, fat carcasses used to be high, Kelly Bruns, professor of Animal Science at South Dakota State University (SDSU) said holding steers is sometimes the best option anyway.


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