Argentina no longer a global beef powerhouse

This is the final article in a short series about agriculture in Argentina, a country I had a chance to visit as part of the International Federation of Agriculture Journalists conference in 2013.

A gaucho or cowboy on horseback in ArgentinaArgentina has traditionally been amongst the world’s leading beef producing nations.

Much of its proud rural history is based on cattle, ranching and gauchos – the legendary cowboys of the South American Pampas region who spend their lives herding cattle on the vast grasslands.

But the country is far from the global beef powerhouse it used to be, as delegates to the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists’ congress held in Argentina learned in early September. Continue reading Argentina no longer a global beef powerhouse

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Local processor wins award for allergen-free meat products

Stemmler Boys on Truck

Brothers Kevin (squatting), Terry and Shawn Stemmler of Stemmler Meats and Cheese in Heidelberg, ON.

They built their business on the power of local long before it was popular and their allergen-free meat products are a life-line to many food allergy sufferers.

These efforts have won Waterloo Region’s Stemmler Meats and Cheese a Premier’s Award for Innovation and they’ve also just been named a finalist for a prestigious innovation award from the Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber of Commerce. Continue reading Local processor wins award for allergen-free meat products

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Beef farmers raise 70K for local cardiac rehab centre

Picton – A desire to give back to a community that supported them in their time of need led to a fundraising campaign by local beef farmers that has raised $70,000 for a cardiac rehabilitation program in Picton, Ontario.

The donation by the Prince Edward County Cattlemen’s Association was instrumental in helping to establish an outpatient rehabilitation program with the Prince Edward Family Health Team – only the fourth such program in eastern Ontario – for people recovering from heart disease or cardiac surgery.

Previously, patients had to travel as far as Kingston or Ottawa to access treatment. Continue reading Beef farmers raise 70K for local cardiac rehab centre

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Ultrasound helps beef farmers make better marketing decisions

Using ultrasound on cattle to identify carcass characteristics is helping beef farmers maximize their profitability.

A project led by Beef Improvement Opportunities (BIO) has shown that ultrasound technology can accurately predict specific carcass characteristics, such as weight, back fat and marbling, which directly affect how much a producer is paid for an animal.

Continue reading Ultrasound helps beef farmers make better marketing decisions

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Keeping tabs on where the cows are

RFID tags are placed in an animal's ear

Many modern-day pet owners microchip their four-legged companions.

This is to help identify them should they become lost, injured or otherwise harmed in some way.

Farmers are doing a similar thing with their beef cattle.

They’re using radio frequency identification (RFID) tags to keep track of their animals as they move from farm to farm at various points in their lives.

These tags, which are placed in the ear, store information about each animal, such as its farm of origin, age and identification numbers, to help farmers and processors maintain and promote food safety and traceability. Continue reading Keeping tabs on where the cows are

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As cows live and eat

Here’s the third in a series of guest posts I’ve been writing for the Canadian Beef Blog.

Last month, I described some of the different cattle breeds and how to tell the difference between a dairy cow (one that gives milk) and a beef cow (one that is raised for meat).

Now we’re going to take a quick look at how and where cattle are raised and what they eat.

Beef cows and calves typically live outside on pasture in the spring, summer and fall months – which is why it’s not uncommon to see cows grazing in fields if you find yourself out enjoying the Canadian countryside. Continue reading As cows live and eat

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Cows of many colours

Here’s another guest blog I wrote for Canadian Beef Blog recently:

A cow is a cow is a cow, right? Not exactly.

Yes, they’re all the same type of animal but there are many different breeds. For example, even though they’re both dogs, there aren’t a lot of similarities between a small white Bichon Frise and a large German Sheppard! The same principles apply to cattle.

To complicate things further, did you know that different breeds are used for different things on the farm? Continue reading Cows of many colours

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