by Patrick Davis MU Extension Livestock Field Specialist
Are you a cattle producer that has small numbers of cattle but want to experience feeding cattle in the feedyard, evaluate your cattle’s feedyard performance, and determine whether your cattle meet certain targets at slaughter that influence their profitability? Then consider enrolling steers in the Missouri Steer Feedout. This program is a cooperation between MU Extension, Southwest Missouri Cattlemen’s Association, Missouri Department of Agriculture and Tri-County Steer Carcass Futurity in Iowa that began in 1981. Over the 40 plus year history this program has enrolled over 7,900 head of steers from over 369 farms.
The Missouri Steer Feedout is an educational program for cattle producers and gives them the opportunity to do four things: • Evaluate the genetics and management of their calves as they influence feedlot performance and carcass characteristics. • See if their cattle can hit various market targets at slaughter • Gain experience feeding cattle and retaining ownership without investment and risk of feeding an entire pen of cattle • Improving the reputation of Missouri cattle while exploring market alternatives.
Entries will be accepted through May 10th for the next Missouri Steer Feedout, with weigh-in projected for early June.
An entry consists of five or more head of steers born after July 1, 2022. At delivery they should be weaned at least 30 days, weigh over 500 pounds, be dehorned, castrated and healed, and have had two rounds of modified live vaccines.
The steers will be collected at Joplin Regional Stockyards near Carthage, MO in early June to be weighed. Following weigh-in, Missouri Department of Agriculture graders evaluate and price steers. Pricing helps at the end of the feedout in the profitability calculation.
After the weigh-in, the steers are sent to a feedlot in southwestern Iowa as part of the Tri-County Steer Carcass Futurity (TCSCF). Complete carcass data is gathered once steers are slaughtered.TCSCF officials combine the set-in price, feedlot performance and carcass value to find out which steers were the most profitable during the finishing phase. This helps participants make decisions about breeding stock and whether to retain ownership.
The feedout offers consignors other attractive perks. The only upfront money required is a $20 per head entry fee payable by May 10th. There are no periodic feed bills, as all expenses are deducted from the final check. Those who send 10 or more steers may ask for a cash advance once the steers arrive in Iowa. The advance cannot exceed 50% of the initial market value of the cattle.
If cattle producers are interested in enrolling steers in the program or want more information, contact the Cedar County MU Extension Center at (417) 276-3313.