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ARS Home » Northeast Area » University Park, Pennsylvania » Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #326950

Title: Characteristics of beef cattle operations in the Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin)

item Asem-Hiablie, Senorpe
item Rotz, Clarence - Al
item Stout, Robert
item STACKHOUSE-LAWSON, KIM - National Cattlemen'S Beef Association (NCBA)

Submitted to: National Cattlemens Beef Association Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Other
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/5/2016
Publication Date: 7/1/2016
Citation: Asem-Hiablie, S., Rotz, C.A., Stout, R.C., Stackhouse-Lawson, K. 2016. Characteristics of beef cattle operations in the Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin). National Cattlemens Beef Association Annual Meeting. P. 1.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Following the launch of the Beef Checkoff’s U.S. Beef Industry Sustainability Assessment in 2011, region-specific collection of beef production information is underway to provide data for a benchmark national life cycle assessment. The aim of this factsheet is to summarize data gathered from online surveys and visits to ranches and feedlots in the Midwest, one of seven cattle producing regions demarcated for the study. The Midwest comprised of seven states, namely Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin. Ranch responses received (n = 237; 219 survey and 18 site visits) represented 0.5% of the 4.5 million beef cows maintained in the Midwest according to national agriculture census data. Feedlot responses (n = 74; 61 survey responses and 13 site visits) meanwhile, represented 5.0% of cattle finished in the region. Brood cow herd sizes ranged from 2 to 900 per ranch while 2 – 6,000 stockers per ranch was reported. The mean cow weight across the region was 1,336 lbs. The average stocking rate for the region was 2.8 ac/cow-calf pair. Illinois and Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin were higher than average with individual means of 1.9 - 2.2 ac/cow-calf pair. Seventy percent of the cattle finished in the region were reported in Iowa. Holstein breeds were kept by 32% of feedlots in addition to traditional beef breeds. Majority of the feedyards grew feed for their cattle with average cultivated acreage of 0.94 ac/animal fed. Few (10%) of responding feedlots used irrigation. The amount of labor, equipment, and energy use was dependent on the operation type, level of mechanization, and amount of custom operations employed.