Results of recent Cow-Calf Production Surveys across Canada



Industry data provided by production surveys can serve as a benchmark for production performance across the country. Historical production surveys include the Alberta Cow-Calf Audit (1986-88, 1997-1998) and “Reproductive Efficiency and Calf survival in Ontario Beef Cow-calf Herds” (1983). Sixteen years later, the survey was revived, revised and expanded into the Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey (WCCCS, 2014). In the last two production years, additional surveys have occurred across Canada (Western Canada, Ontario, Northern Quebec, Atlantic). These have provided an overall picture of current production and management practices on beef cow-calf operations in each region of the country for the first time. The objective of these surveys were multi-faceted.

Canadian Cow-Calf Surveys

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One week remaining: attention BC, AB, SK and MB cow-calf producers

Do you wonder how your cow-calf operation compares with others in your region, province or herd size range on matters like conception rate and weaning weight? A joint effort representing the cow-calf industry from BC, AB, SK and MB is helping Western Canadian cattle producers do just that.

The deadline to participate is February 28, 2018.



By participating in the second Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey, you can choose to receive a complementary report that allows you to compare your own operation with benchmarks (average numbers from a region).

To thank you for completing the survey, which will provide very valuable and needed information to guide research and extension, you will receive up to $50 in gift cards, in addition to the complementary report.

The survey takes about 45-60 minutes to complete and asks questions related to the 2016 breeding season all the way through to weaning of 2017 calf crop, as well as typical management practices. Many of the questions are the quick check-box style. Any question you are unable to answer can be left blank.

Every cow-calf producer in BC, AB, SK and MB is encouraged to complete the survey. All of the information collected will remain confidential. Information cannot be linked to individual operations as data will be aggregated into averages and benchmarks.

The complementary report will Continue reading

Attention Western cow-calf producers: opportunity to compare production levels

Do you wonder how your cow-calf operation compares with others in your region, province or herd size range on matters like conception rate and weaning weight? A joint effort representing the cow-calf industry from BC to Manitoba is helping Western Canadian cattle producers do just that.



By participating in the second Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey, producers can choose to receive a complementary report that allows them to compare their own operation with benchmarks (average numbers from a region).

The survey takes about 45-60 minutes to complete and asks questions related to the 2016 breeding season all the way through to weaning of 2017 calf crop, as well as typical management practices. Many of the questions are the quick check-box style. Any question a producer is unable to answer can be left blank.

To thank you for the time you take to complete the survey, you will receive up to $50 in gift cards, in addition to the complementary report.

The complementary report will help producers see the aspects of their operation that they’re doing exceptionally well in, and the areas that have the greatest room for improvement. For example, the report will show a producer whether the conception rates of his cows in 2016 was higher or lower than nearby herds and herds of a similar size. That way, he or she will know whether to work with their veterinarian, nutritionist and/or regional extension specialist to have fewer of their cows come home from pasture open, or if other production goals are a higher priority for them to focus on to improve their productivity and profitability.

This survey is being conducted for a number of reasons: to Continue reading

Attention Atlantic cow-calf producers



The Maritime Beef Council in cooperation with the Provincial Beef Associations and Perennia are conducting the Atlantic Cow-Calf Survey.

The purpose of the overall study project is to gain a better understanding of the management practices, economics, and disease rates on Maritime cow-calf farms and determine how well Maritime producers compete in a global economy. This survey will obtain basic information on production practices, management choices, disease rates, and rate of technology adaptation in the provinces.

The survey is maximum 79 questions in length and should take approximately 40 minutes to complete. The last day to participate in this survey is December 31, 2017.

Complete the survey online: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2017-ATL-cow-calf or request a paper copy by calling 1-902-969-1632. Continue reading

Ontario cow-calf survey deadline extended


ontario cow-calf production survey
Ontario cow-calf producers, if you have not yet filled out the Ontario Cow-Calf Production Survey, you now have until May 31st.

The survey is 76 questions in length and should take approximately 30 minutes to complete. If at any time, you do not wish to answer a question you may leave it unanswered. If you don’t have an exact date or number for any of the questions asked, a best-estimate will suffice.

PLEASE COMPLETE THIS SURVEY ONLY ONCE, ONLINE OR VIA MAIL.

Every Ontario cow-calf producer is encouraged to complete the survey.

The purpose of the overall project is to gain a better understanding of the management practices, economics, disease rates and rate of technology adaptation on Ontario cow-calf farms and determine how well Ontario producers compete in Continue reading

Ontario Cow-Calf Production Survey


ontario cow-calf production survey
Ontario cow-calf producers, do you wonder how your operation compares with others in your region or province on matters like conception rate and weaning weight?

The Ontario Cow-Calf Production Survey is being conducted by researchers at the University of Guelph, in partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Beef Farmers of Ontario, and the Beef Cattle Research Council. Questions in this survey have been adapted and will be comparable to answers from the Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey conducted in 2014, allowing comparison from east to west.

The purpose of the overall project is to gain a better understanding of the management practices, economics, and disease rates on Ontario cow-calf farms and determine how well Ontario producers compete in a global economy. This survey will obtain basic information on production practices, management choices, disease rates, and rate of technology adaptation in the province.

The findings of the survey will be Continue reading

Results of the Beef Research Priority Survey

How Your Input is Influencing Future Research

Earlier this year the BCRC developed an online Beef Research Priority Survey. The Survey asked participants to rate the importance of research issues listed in the 2012 National Beef Research Strategy.



We were very pleased to receive over 500 responses.

Over half of the respondents were producers. Most were cow-calf producers (49%), with smaller numbers of seedstock breeders (5%) and feedlot operators (4%). Other responses came from veterinarians, researchers, abattoir staff, government staff and industry staff.

Every province was represented. More producer responses came from western (85%) than central and eastern Canada (15%). Nearly half of the responses were from producers 40 years of age or younger. This indicates that the producers who responded to the survey are more likely those looking forward to a long future in the beef industry.

We sifted through all of the responses in detail with greater focus on the responses provided by producers, as well as veterinarians’ responses where appropriate (e.g. animal health, welfare and antimicrobial issues). We paid special attention to issues that were identified as ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ important by at least 75% of producers and vets, as well as issues that were rarely rated as ‘very’ or ‘extremely’ important. We also compared responses between eastern and western Canada for issues where geography may be expected to play an important role (e.g. forage and feed grain issues).

Here’s what you told us… Continue reading

Results of the Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey: Production Benchmarks

This post was written in collaboration with Kathy Larson, MSc, PAg, Beef Economist with the Western Beef Development Centre.

Herd productivity is closely linked to herd profitability. The calculation for break-even price on calves clearly demonstrates this:



The break-even price can be lowered by decreasing total cow herd costs or by increasing the total pounds of calves weaned. Increasing the total weight (lbs) of weaned calves can be achieved by improving herd productivity, such as:

   a) INCREASING – conception rates, weaning rate, etc.
   b) DECREASING – calf death loss, calving span, etc.

While it is good management to track and calculate one’s herd production performance indicators on an annual basis, it can be helpful to have benchmarks to compare to. Benchmarks help a producer know if they are on the right track. They can help a producer identify if they excel in a certain area and/or could improve in another. They can also help to show what production and management practices other producers are following. Benchmark productivity measures for the cow-calf sector can also help guide research and extension efforts.

For these reasons, a group of individuals from British Columbia to Manitoba, representing provincial beef producer groups, provincial Ministry of Agriculture specialists, the Beef Cattle Research Council, Canfax and the Western Beef Development Centre have revived, expanded and conducted a survey last conducted in Alberta in 1998.

The Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey (WCCCS) was distributed to producers from November 2014 until the end of February 2015. A total of 411 survey responses were received (representing just over 76,000 cows). Response rates varied by province with the greatest percentage of respondents being from Continue reading

Reminder: Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey deadline is Feb. 28



Every cow-calf producer in BC, AB, SK and MB is asked to complete the survey. It takes about 35-45 minutes to complete and asks questions related to the 2014 calf crop, as well as typical management practices. Many of the questions are the quick check-box style. Any question a producer is unable to answer can be left blank. By participating in the Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey, producers can choose to receive a complementary report that allows them to compare their own operation with benchmarks (average numbers from a region).

Complete the survey online

https://fluidsurveys.usask.ca/s/WesternCdnCow_Calf_Survey/

or

Print a copy of the survey and send it using Canada Post

  1. Print hard copy: http://www.wbdc.sk.ca/pdfs/economics/WCCC_Survey_Fall2014.pdf
  2. Print pre-paid postage label: http://www.wbdc.sk.ca/pdfs/economics/WCCCS_Postage_eLabel.pdf
  3. Read the postage label instructions: http://www.wbdc.sk.ca/pdfs/economics/WCCCS_Postage_eLabel_Instructions.pdf

The deadline to participate is February 28, 2015. Results will be Continue reading

Cow-calf producers’ opportunity to compare their production levels

Cow-calf producers, do you wonder how your operation compares with others in your region, province or herd size range on matters like conception rate and weaning weight? A joint effort representing the cow-calf industry from BC to Manitoba is helping Western Canadian cattle producers do just that.



By participating in the Western Canadian Cow-Calf Survey, producers can choose to receive a complementary report that allows them to compare their own operation with benchmarks (average numbers from a region).

The survey takes about 35-45 minutes to complete and asks questions related to the 2014 calf crop, as well as typical management practices. Many of the questions are the quick check-box style. Any question a producer is unable to answer can be left blank.

The complementary report will help producers see the aspects of their operation that they’re doing exceptionally well in, and the areas that have the greatest room for improvement. For example, the report will show a producer whether the conception rates of his cows in 2013 was higher or lower than nearby herds and herds of a similar size. That way, he’ll know whether he should work with his veterinarian, nutritionist and/or regional extension specialist to have fewer of his cows come home from pasture open, or if other production goals are a higher priority for him to focus on to improve his productivity and profitability.

The findings of the survey will Continue reading