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ARS Home » Northeast Area » University Park, Pennsylvania » Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #338562

Research Project: Mitigating Emissions and Adapting Farm Systems to Climate Variability

Location: Pasture Systems & Watershed Management Research

Title: Management Characteristics of Grass-finished Beef Operations in the Northeast

Author
item Dillon, Jasmine - Pennsylvania State University
item Rotz, Clarence - Al

Submitted to: Meeting Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/17/2017
Publication Date: 3/2/2017
Citation: Dillon, J., Rotz, C.A. 2017. Management Characteristics of Grass-finished Beef Operations in the Northeast. Annual Pasture Consortium Meeting.March 2-3,2017,Hagerstown,Maryland. P.1.

Interpretive Summary: No Interpretive Summary is required for this Abstract. JLB.

Technical Abstract: An online survey of self-identified grass-finished beef producers was conducted throughout the Northeast region along with several farm visits. Seventy acceptable records from producers in Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and West Virginia were included in the analysis. The typical farm managed cattle from cow-calf through finish, and had an average of 24 cows and 24 finishers on 141 acres. The average grass-finished animal was finished and marketed for beef at 23 months of age and 1,091 lb. Seventy percent of the total land represented by the survey was grazed and 30% was harvested. Of the producers producing hay from pasture on the farm, 58% reported replanting at some interval and 75% reported using no-till management practices. Eighty-seven percent of farms raised calves from birth to finish, while 13% of farms were finishing operations only. Fifty percent of producers reported purchasing feed for the herd, and dry hay was the most commonly purchased feed. Beef products were most commonly marketed directly to the consumer (89% of producers), although 24% of producers marketed their beef through multiple outlets. Fifty-three percent of producers reported marketing additional species from the farm. Production information provides a basis to evaluate and improve the sustainability of grass-finished beef. This work is part of a national assessment of the sustainability of beef that is being conducted by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association with partial support from the Beef Checkoff.