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The profit-maximising feeding period for different breeds of beef cattle

Oosthuizen, P. L., Maré, F. A.
Agrekon 2018 v.57 no.2 pp. 108-120
Angus, Bonsmara, Brahman, beef cattle, case studies, economic valuation, feed intake, feedlots, models, prices, profitability
The objective of this study was to determine the profit-maximising feeding period (PMFP) of different breeds of beef cattle. The differentiation between breeds according to their genetic growth potential was identified and used to increase feedlot profitability and sustainability. The unique growth and feed intake data of different breeds was generated through a feedlot feeding experiment. The PMFP model was developed to incorporate the variable economic value and the unique production data of each breed into a model. The PMFP model can determine alternative PMFPs for any price scenario. The results indicate that breeds can be differentiated in terms of genetic production potential. The seven breeds used in this study can be divided into three groups in terms of their estimated PMFPs for the specific scenario. The Brahman, Bonsmara, and Afrikaner can be grouped together with a PMFP of 16 weeks for the Brahman and Bonsmara, and 15 weeks for the Afrikaner. The second group included the Simbra and the Angus, which have a PMFP of 21 and 22 weeks respectively. The Simmentaler and Limousin have a PMFP of 27 and 26 weeks respectively, which groups them together in the final group. In conclusion, additional Gπ can be generated by each breed by feeding them according to their unique PMFP. According to the case study the additional gross profit that can be generated by the implication of the PMFP-model was 6%.