“In the cattle industry, the successes of the present and future innovations are often closely linked to past experience,” writes Mona Howe in her cover story on the James Hargrave Legacy Foundation Award. This month marks the two-year anniversary of Hargrave’s passing, a tremendous loss to his family, community and the industry. Howe writes about how the Western Stock Growers Association was inspired to create an award that fosters innovation and honours Hargrave’s legacy, as well as about Chancey Guichon, the inaugural recipient of the award.
Many cattle are moving into feedlots this time of year, and our October issue reflects that shift. Piper Whelan covers research led by Cameron Olson on how temperament affects feedlot performance, as well as carcass quality and value. Olson, a PhD student at the University of Alberta, worked with Texas A&M on the three-year study, which based temperament on the heifers’ speed as they exited a chute. Olson and his colleagues then measured and compared the performance between the calmer and more excitable heifers.
While some consumers and retailers are pushing for beef that has been finished without growth-enhancing technologies, questions remain about how much producers need to be paid to offset the extra cost of such a system. Heather Smith Thomas writes about an ongoing research project that seeks to answer that very question. Researchers at Saskatchewan’s Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence are comparing the economics of conventional and “natural” feeding systems and studying whether the right grazing strategies can offset some of the extra costs built into the unconventional system.
Those are just a few of the stories we’ve got lined up for you, in addition to our regular departments and columns. If you’re not already a subscriber to the magazine, you can sign up today online.