Results of the inaugural American Gelbvieh Foundation (AGF) Steer Challenge and Scale and Rail Sire-Identified Carcass Contest were announced during the 46th Annual American Gelbvieh Association National Convention awards banquet on Friday, December 3. Breeders from Kansas, Nebraska, and Illinois took home top honors with prize payouts totaling $7,900.
The AGF continues to help advance the Gelbvieh breed through its support of research and development. For this reason, the AGF launched its first ever Steer Challenge and Scale and Rail Sire-Identified Carcass Testing Contest. These two projects together provide the information and funds necessary to generate datasets to advance Gelbvieh and Balancer® carcass merit.
The AGF Steer Challenge was a competition amongst individual Gelbvieh and Balancer-influenced steers in which the criteria focused on average daily gain in the feedyard, carcass value and overall top value animal, which combined average daily gain and carcass value. The Steer Challenge gives an opportunity for participants to donate a steer to the AGF. All proceeds from the donation go toward research and development within the Gelbvieh breed. The AGF Sire-Identified Carcass Testing Contest awarded steers, which were in a group of three or more animals from the same contemporary group, on these same qualities and also awarded a top-performing pen. In its first year, nine ranches participated with a total of 35 animals on feed at Roode Feedyard in Fairbury, Nebraska. All steers were harvested and values were calculated in July 2016.
LeDoux Ranch, Agenda, Kansas, placed high in both the AGF Steer Challenge and Balancer division of the Scale and Rail Contest and took home a total of $3,800 in prize payouts. LeDoux’s winning steer in the AGF Steer Challenge took home top carcass value and top value animal; this steer was sired by SGRI Jacked Up Z704. The same steer also took home top accolades in the Balancer division of the Scale and Rail Contest including second highest average daily gain at 4.27 pounds per day, top carcass value at $1,116 with a 1,060 pound hot carcass weight and a 15.3 square inch ribeye. This steer also took home top value Balancer animal with a value of $1,120, USDA Yield Grade 3.8 and a quality grade of USDA Choice-.
Flying H Genetics, Arapahoe, Nebraska, owned the Balancer steer with the highest average daily gain, gaining 4.56 pounds per day. This steer was sired by FHG Flying H Professor 22W.
Warner Beef Genetics, Arapahoe, Nebraska, owned the steer which took second place for top carcass in the Balancer division with a carcass value of $1,114, hot carcass weight of 1,055 pounds, and a 12.5 square inch ribeye. This same steer also placed second for top value animal with a total value of $1,117, USDA Yield Grade 3.8 and quality grade of USDA Choice-. This steer was sired by DCSF Post Rock Highly Focused 308Y8. Warner Beef Genetics also owned the champion pen of Balancer steers with an average top value of $1,374, average USDA Yield Grade of 3.5, and average quality grade of USDA Choice-. They took home $1,400 in prize payouts for their steers’ performance in the contests.
In the Gelbvieh division, Blackhawk Cattle Company, Oregon, Illinois, was a notable winner owning the top carcass and top value steer as well as champion pen and taking home $1,600 in prize payouts. Blackhawk Cattle Company’s top carcass steer had a carcass value of $1,057, a hot carcass weight of 994 pounds, and a ribeye area of 13.5 square inches. This steer also had a USDA Yield Grade 3.1, and quality grade of USDA Choice-. This steer’s total value was the highest in the Gelbvieh division at $1,061 and was sired by VRT Lazy TV Sam U451. Blackhawk Cattle Company also owned the champion pen of Gelbvieh steers with the average value of the pen being $1,355, average USDA Yield Grade 3.0 and average quality grade of USDA Choice-.
CKS Gelbvieh, Collins, Iowa, owned the Gelbvieh steer that placed first for average daily gain, gaining 3.99 pounds per day. This steer was sired by TAU Mr Gunnison 230U 110Z.