Feeding for the white-fat cow market (Research)

The sale of culled breeding stock typically accounts for 20 percent of a cow-calf operation's income. Adding value to those animals increases revenue. Iowa State University researchers conducted three feeding demonstrations during 2002 and 2003 to examine whether high-energy feeding  would achieve white-fat status in market cows. They vaccinated and implanted, then slowly stepped the cows up to a high-energy ration. Average daily gains in the groups ranged from 2.78 to 3.87 pounds. After 70 to 90 days on feed, nearly 90 percent graded in the premium price categories and 74 to 89 percent of the cows made it into the #1 or #2 Premium White Fat grades. Net profit ranged from $52 to $89 per head.