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BQA Tip of the Month
Colostrum — an opportunity to add value
Colostrum intake not only impacts calf health, but it also is an opportunity to add value to dairy beef.
“(In beef cattle, we know that) if they don’t get adequate passive immune transfer when they’re born, they can have reduced weaning weight — up to a 30 to 40-pound reduction in weaning weight,” says Amy Radunz, state beef cattle extension specialist with the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Performance in the feedlot also suffers, and animals have higher morbidity and mortality rates, Radunz said at the 2011 Dairy Calf & Heifer Conference.
Making sure dairy calves receive a sufficient quantity of high-quality colostrum at birth is an important component of the Dairy Animal Care & Quality Assurance (DACQA) program.
The DACQA manual states: “The amount and quality of colostrum a calf receives within the first hours of life is universally agreed to be the single most important management factor affecting the animal’s well-being as demonstrated by calf mortality and treatment costs as well as growth, performance, and profitability for the first six months of life … and beyond.”
DACQA recommends that all calves receive 2 to preferably 4 quarts of colostrum within the first 1 to 2 hours of life, followed by 2 more feedings within the first 18 hours, which is comparable to DCHA’s Gold Standards I recommendations that the first feeding includes high-quality colostrum; for example, a 90-lb calf should receive 4 quarts of colostrum.
Calves also rely on colostrum for the vitamins that help develop the immune system and set the stage for growth.
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Take a Crash Course in Butchering, From A to Beef
NBC’s Today Show recently featured Kari Underly, who recently penned a book entitled, The Art of Beef Cutting -- A Professional's Guide to Butchering and Merchandising, which was released in August.
The segment included tips on how to shop the meat case without being intimidated, deciphering labels and questions to ask the butcher.
Watch the segment here.
Feel Good About Loving Beef
Today's consumers are food price sensitive. But it was startling to learn that some consumers are employing cost-cutting strategies that have them questioning the nutritional quality of their diets.
A beef checkoff-funded consumer survey showed that consumers are changing their shopping behaviors, and in some cases, eliminating naturally nutrient-rich protein sources in the process. Consumers are watching every penny and America's beef producers are proud to produce a product that provides great value, nutrition and taste without breaking the bank. Even in today's turbulent economy, it can be easy to prepare a delicious and nutritious meal that brings family and friends together. And today's budget-conscious consumer is hungry for the tools that will keep their favorite foods on the table.
The beef checkoff has tips that will help consumers stretch their dollar at the meat case -- from choosing the right beef cuts for their budget to knowing how to make affordable cuts moist and tender. Visit the ultimate online beef resource: www.BeefItsWhatsForDinner.com.
I’m Dreaming of 12 Holiday Beef Recipes
Nothing says "holiday" like friends and family gathered 'round a delicious feast. From appetizers and main courses to breakfast and brunch, here are a dozen beef recipes sure to make this holiday season more joyful than ever!
Click here to see all 12 checkoff-funded recipes.