New research investments build on the success of the Beef Science Cluster under Growing Forward 2

The Beef Cattle Industry Science Cluster is a partnership between Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) and the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) to ensure that proactive and strategic investments in applied research are allocated to programs that have the greatest potential to move the Canadian beef cattle sector forward. The partnership is focused on enhanced coordination and collaboration, and alignment of research activities with industry priorities to increase productivity, reduce costs, advance sustainability, and increase demand for Canadian beef. Continue reading

Extended grazing systems covered in latest episode of Beef Research School

A new video is now available on

The practice of extending grazing into the winter months is quickly gaining popularity.  Extended grazing methods, including swath, stockpiled and bale grazing, have considerable economic benefits over traditional winter feeding systems. Well managed systems reduce or eliminate labour, feed and manure handling costs during the winter.  New research continually informs management practices that deliver optimum results. For example, Continue reading

Explaining Growth Promotants Used in Feedlot Cattle

Feed efficiency in cattle can make or break profitability in the feeding sector, and has environmental implications. The costs of buying a calf and the feed needed to finish it are the two largest variable expenses facing the beef cattle feeding sector. Feed costs are higher than ever because of poor growing conditions in major grain producing countries, because of the use of feed grains in ethanol production, and because of increasing competition of land for crop production versus urban development.

Growth promotants are among the many sophisticated tools used by feedlots and other producers to raise more beef, more rapidly, using less feed, while maintaining high standards of animal health, carcass quality and food safety. Growth promotants include ionophores, growth implants, and beta-agonists. A number of products within each category are approved for use by Health Canada’s Veterinary Drug Directorate. Continue reading

Mentorship Opportunity for Young Beef Researchers

Engaging researchers who study cattle, beef, genetics, feed or forage production with the Canadian beef cattle industry is mutually beneficial; it allows researchers to be better informed of industry needs and more likely to share their findings with a practical, solution-based focus.  Facilitating and encouraging their attendance to industry events and networking with industry professionals, especially for new beef researchers from non-agriculture backgrounds, is extremely valuable.

The Cattlemen’s Young Leaders (CYL) program does just that. The program provides outstanding mentorship opportunities to those aged 18-35 interested in research, a career, or industry leadership in the Canadian beef cattle sector. The deadline to apply for the 2013/14 program is just two weeks away. Continue reading

Managing winter nutrition: new Beef Research School episode

A new video is now available on

Feeding beef cattle over the winter can be a challenging balance between ensuring the health and productivity of your animals, and keeping feed and yardage costs at a reasonable level.  We recently sat down with Dr. Kim Ominski, a researcher at the University of Manitoba focused on productivity and environmental sustainability of forage-based beef cattle production systems. Continue reading