COVID-19 Tips and Guidelines for Feedlot Operators

Alberta Cattle Feeders Association has compiled a number of tips and guidelines being implemented successfully by members and Directors for others to utilize to ensure safety during this pandemic, and into the future if necessary.

Cattle Feeders’ Statement Regarding A&W’s Grassfed Beef Sourcing Announcement

While the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association is glad to see A&W committing to sourcing all of their beef from Canadian farms and ranches, the decision to source only grassfed beef raises concerns with both the reasoning for the choice and how A&W will promote it to consumers.

“While we like to see A&W supporting Canadian producers, we want to ensure consumers recognize that grain-finished beef is just as nutritious and, actually, more environmentally beneficial than grassfed,” says Greg Schmidt, Chair of the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association.

Both grassfed and grainfed production methods are used in Canada to raise beef in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner. However, grain finished beef requires significantly fewer resources and has a lower environmental impact than its grassfed counterpart, without sacrificing any nutritional value.

Approximately 98% of beef consumed in Canada is grain-fed (typically corn or barley) for finishing; however, all beef begins raised on its mother’s milk then transitions to grazing on grass. Beef cattle then feed on hay, silage, or other forage as it is impossible to grow cattle on fresh grass year-round in Canada’s climate. After summer pasture, the majority of cattle are transferred to feedlots for 60 – 200 days, where the focus is on efficient growth and production.

  • Cattle raised on diets supplemented with grain actually produce significantly fewer GHG emissions than grassfed only cattle.
    • Researchers from Washington State University, University of California- Davis, University of New South Wales (Australia), and the Hudson Institute Center for Global Food Issues found that pound-for-pound, beef produced with grain emit significantly less GHG than grass-fed beef. A grain diet is more easily digestible than the cellulose fibers of grass, producing less methane.
    • Grassfed cattle also take significantly longer to reach slaughter weights and, in that time, produce more methane than grain-fed cattle in feedlots.
    • With less time on feed before slaughter, grainfed cattle are also consuming less water.
    • That cumulatively leads to a situation where a grass-finished animal will have about 25 to 30% more carbon emissions associated with it than a grain-finished animal.
  • In addition, grass-fed cattle require more than five acres to produce a pound of beef, while less than 1.7 acres are needed in a grain-fed feedlot system, conserving a significant amount of land dedicated to producing beef.

For more information, please contact:

Janice Tranberg
President and CEO, ACFA
jtranberg@cattlefeeders.ca
(403) 542-5830

New ACFA/NCFA President & CEO Janice Tranberg

Non-refundable checkoff defeated, cattle group moving on
ABP leaders say they wish more had cast ballots but the issue is now in the rear-view mirror

Opinion: Healthiest diets include meat and dairy, say health professionals
CALGARY HERALD Updated: December 8, 2018

We have read the opinion article titled “Health Canada’s new Food Guide is on the right track” (Calgary Herald, Nov. 27) with interest. We represent a growing number of Canadian physicians and health professionals, called the Canadian Clinicians for Therapeutic Nutrition, who use whole-food nutritional strategies, which often include meat, eggs and dairy, to prevent and often put into remission the burden of chronic non-communicable disease in our patients. This usually involves lower levels of carbohydrates and higher levels of natural fats than is currently recommended, a therapeutic nutritional strategy well supported in the literature.

More Canadians turning to plant-based proteins: report
Canada’s Food Price Report 2019

Canadians are showing more and more interest in reducing meat consumption, while increasing their purchases of plant-based proteins, according to data compiled in the latest Food Price Report from the University of Guelph and Dalhousie University.

Government of Alberta Employment Standards Update
Minimum age for employment in Alberta is going up

The new rules don’t apply to volunteers, contractors, youth employed on farms and ranches, or to casual work such as babysitting or snow shovelling.

Alberta feedlot harnesses the power of sun

Solar panels supply some power on this feedlot, but they probably wouldn’t be here without government funding

Market Update: Strong consumer demand is using up beef supplies

Feedlot operators should also look to hedge up about 50 per cent of their production later in November when fed cattle prices are expected to make seasonal highs. It looks like the fed cattle market will experience a similar pattern as last year over the winter period.

It’s decision time on beef checkoff

Get out and vote is the main message coming from Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association chair Ryan Kasko and his counterpart at Alberta Beef Producers.

Feeder associations hire new executive director
Barbara Duckworth, The Western Producer

‘It’s change they’re afraid of’: We asked beef farmers what they think of supply management

 “I understand (dairy’s) trepidation, but there are hundreds of thousands of other farmers that are being potentially hung out to dry if NAFTA fails because of supply management,” said Ryan Kasko, a cattle feeder from near Lethbridge, Alta.

Ryan Thompson, owner of Living Sky Beef near Minton, Sask., laughed at the argument that food safety is tied to market controls. “To say that monopolizing a market will ensure safety, they’re not even connected,” he said. “It’s change they’re afraid of, but I firmly believe that the milk produced in Canada is the highest quality in the world, and I don’t think they need to be afraid of some other country coming in and taking their market,” said Thompson. “Canadians will pay for Canadian milk because that’s what they want to buy, and I don’t think it matters if there’s U.S. or New Zealand or European milk on the shelf.”

Canadian farmers struggling with labour shortage seek changes to Temporary Foreign Worker program

In Alberta, the two agricultural sectors that rely the most on foreign workers are the greenhouse and the cattle feeding industries. Bryan Walton, CEO of the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association, said at some feedlots up to 10 per cent of the workforce is made up of foreign workers.

“Our members require foreign workers to augment their Canadian workforce, and they can’t get applications proved in a timely manner,” Walton said. “Those who don’t really understand agriculture are setting the policy, and that is creating a lot of discomfort for us and our members.”

Feedlots to benefit from new animal care audit

“Dr. Joyce Van Donkersgoed, feedlot veterinarian, was instrumental in developing the audit program with the National Cattle Feeders’ Association. Canadian facilities JBS and Cargill Meats, and Tyson’s at Pasco, Washington, are involved with the program as are retailers and some companies like McDonald’s.

The program has received certification and approval from the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO), National Farm Animal Care Council and the Canadian Roundtable on Sustainable Beef.

It is available online and is offered in English, French and Spanish. It includes low-stress animal handling videos online.”

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

CHANGES TO THE ALBERTA IMMIGRANT NOMINEE PROGRAM EFFECTIVE JUNE 14, 2018
Summary of the AINP program and Alberta Labour’s changes provided by Newland Chase.

Third generation continues legacy on Alta. farm
ACFA Past Chair, Martin Zuidhof is in the news!
The Western Producer, March 1, 2018

ACFA News

Cattle Feeders’ Statement Regarding A&W’s Grassfed Beef Sourcing Announcement

While the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association is glad to see A&W committing to sourcing all of their beef from Canadian farms and ranches, the decision to source only grassfed beef raises concerns with both the reasoning for the choice and how A&W will promote it to consumers.

“While we like to see A&W supporting Canadian producers, we want to ensure consumers recognize that grain-finished beef is just as nutritious and, actually, more environmentally beneficial than grassfed,” says Greg Schmidt, Chair of the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association.

Both grassfed and grainfed production methods are used in Canada to raise beef in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner. However, grain finished beef requires significantly fewer resources and has a lower environmental impact than its grassfed counterpart, without sacrificing any nutritional value.

Approximately 98% of beef consumed in Canada is grain-fed (typically corn or barley) for finishing; however, all beef begins raised on its mother’s milk then transitions to grazing on grass. Beef cattle then feed on hay, silage, or other forage as it is impossible to grow cattle on fresh grass year-round in Canada’s climate. After summer pasture, the majority of cattle are transferred to feedlots for 60 – 200 days, where the focus is on efficient growth and production.

  • Cattle raised on diets supplemented with grain actually produce significantly fewer GHG emissions than grassfed only cattle.
    • Researchers from Washington State University, University of California- Davis, University of New South Wales (Australia), and the Hudson Institute Center for Global Food Issues found that pound-for-pound, beef produced with grain emit significantly less GHG than grass-fed beef. A grain diet is more easily digestible than the cellulose fibers of grass, producing less methane.
    • Grassfed cattle also take significantly longer to reach slaughter weights and, in that time, produce more methane than grain-fed cattle in feedlots.
    • With less time on feed before slaughter, grainfed cattle are also consuming less water.
    • That cumulatively leads to a situation where a grass-finished animal will have about 25 to 30% more carbon emissions associated with it than a grain-finished animal.
  • In addition, grass-fed cattle require more than five acres to produce a pound of beef, while less than 1.7 acres are needed in a grain-fed feedlot system, conserving a significant amount of land dedicated to producing beef.

For more information, please contact:

Janice Tranberg
President and CEO, ACFA
jtranberg@cattlefeeders.ca
(403) 542-5830

New ACFA/NCFA President & CEO Janice Tranberg

Non-refundable checkoff defeated, cattle group moving on
ABP leaders say they wish more had cast ballots but the issue is now in the rear-view mirror

Opinion: Healthiest diets include meat and dairy, say health professionals
CALGARY HERALD Updated: December 8, 2018

We have read the opinion article titled “Health Canada’s new Food Guide is on the right track” (Calgary Herald, Nov. 27) with interest. We represent a growing number of Canadian physicians and health professionals, called the Canadian Clinicians for Therapeutic Nutrition, who use whole-food nutritional strategies, which often include meat, eggs and dairy, to prevent and often put into remission the burden of chronic non-communicable disease in our patients. This usually involves lower levels of carbohydrates and higher levels of natural fats than is currently recommended, a therapeutic nutritional strategy well supported in the literature.

More Canadians turning to plant-based proteins: report
Canada’s Food Price Report 2019

Canadians are showing more and more interest in reducing meat consumption, while increasing their purchases of plant-based proteins, according to data compiled in the latest Food Price Report from the University of Guelph and Dalhousie University.

Government of Alberta Employment Standards Update
Minimum age for employment in Alberta is going up

The new rules don’t apply to volunteers, contractors, youth employed on farms and ranches, or to casual work such as babysitting or snow shovelling.

Alberta feedlot harnesses the power of sun

Solar panels supply some power on this feedlot, but they probably wouldn’t be here without government funding

Market Update: Strong consumer demand is using up beef supplies

Feedlot operators should also look to hedge up about 50 per cent of their production later in November when fed cattle prices are expected to make seasonal highs. It looks like the fed cattle market will experience a similar pattern as last year over the winter period.

It’s decision time on beef checkoff

Get out and vote is the main message coming from Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association chair Ryan Kasko and his counterpart at Alberta Beef Producers.

Feeder associations hire new executive director
Barbara Duckworth, The Western Producer

‘It’s change they’re afraid of’: We asked beef farmers what they think of supply management

 “I understand (dairy’s) trepidation, but there are hundreds of thousands of other farmers that are being potentially hung out to dry if NAFTA fails because of supply management,” said Ryan Kasko, a cattle feeder from near Lethbridge, Alta.

Ryan Thompson, owner of Living Sky Beef near Minton, Sask., laughed at the argument that food safety is tied to market controls. “To say that monopolizing a market will ensure safety, they’re not even connected,” he said. “It’s change they’re afraid of, but I firmly believe that the milk produced in Canada is the highest quality in the world, and I don’t think they need to be afraid of some other country coming in and taking their market,” said Thompson. “Canadians will pay for Canadian milk because that’s what they want to buy, and I don’t think it matters if there’s U.S. or New Zealand or European milk on the shelf.”

Canadian farmers struggling with labour shortage seek changes to Temporary Foreign Worker program

In Alberta, the two agricultural sectors that rely the most on foreign workers are the greenhouse and the cattle feeding industries. Bryan Walton, CEO of the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association, said at some feedlots up to 10 per cent of the workforce is made up of foreign workers.

“Our members require foreign workers to augment their Canadian workforce, and they can’t get applications proved in a timely manner,” Walton said. “Those who don’t really understand agriculture are setting the policy, and that is creating a lot of discomfort for us and our members.”

Feedlots to benefit from new animal care audit

“Dr. Joyce Van Donkersgoed, feedlot veterinarian, was instrumental in developing the audit program with the National Cattle Feeders’ Association. Canadian facilities JBS and Cargill Meats, and Tyson’s at Pasco, Washington, are involved with the program as are retailers and some companies like McDonald’s.

The program has received certification and approval from the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO), National Farm Animal Care Council and the Canadian Roundtable on Sustainable Beef.

It is available online and is offered in English, French and Spanish. It includes low-stress animal handling videos online.”

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

CHANGES TO THE ALBERTA IMMIGRANT NOMINEE PROGRAM EFFECTIVE JUNE 14, 2018
Summary of the AINP program and Alberta Labour’s changes provided by Newland Chase.

Third generation continues legacy on Alta. farm
ACFA Past Chair, Martin Zuidhof is in the news!
The Western Producer, March 1, 2018

Cattle Feeders’ Statement Regarding A&W’s Grassfed Beef Sourcing Announcement

While the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association is glad to see A&W committing to sourcing all of their beef from Canadian farms and ranches, the decision to source only grassfed beef raises concerns with both the reasoning for the choice and how A&W will promote it to consumers.

“While we like to see A&W supporting Canadian producers, we want to ensure consumers recognize that grain-finished beef is just as nutritious and, actually, more environmentally beneficial than grassfed,” says Greg Schmidt, Chair of the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association.

Both grassfed and grainfed production methods are used in Canada to raise beef in a sustainable, environmentally responsible manner. However, grain finished beef requires significantly fewer resources and has a lower environmental impact than its grassfed counterpart, without sacrificing any nutritional value.

Approximately 98% of beef consumed in Canada is grain-fed (typically corn or barley) for finishing; however, all beef begins raised on its mother’s milk then transitions to grazing on grass. Beef cattle then feed on hay, silage, or other forage as it is impossible to grow cattle on fresh grass year-round in Canada’s climate. After summer pasture, the majority of cattle are transferred to feedlots for 60 – 200 days, where the focus is on efficient growth and production.

  • Cattle raised on diets supplemented with grain actually produce significantly fewer GHG emissions than grassfed only cattle.
    • Researchers from Washington State University, University of California- Davis, University of New South Wales (Australia), and the Hudson Institute Center for Global Food Issues found that pound-for-pound, beef produced with grain emit significantly less GHG than grass-fed beef. A grain diet is more easily digestible than the cellulose fibers of grass, producing less methane.
    • Grassfed cattle also take significantly longer to reach slaughter weights and, in that time, produce more methane than grain-fed cattle in feedlots.
    • With less time on feed before slaughter, grainfed cattle are also consuming less water.
    • That cumulatively leads to a situation where a grass-finished animal will have about 25 to 30% more carbon emissions associated with it than a grain-finished animal.
  • In addition, grass-fed cattle require more than five acres to produce a pound of beef, while less than 1.7 acres are needed in a grain-fed feedlot system, conserving a significant amount of land dedicated to producing beef.

For more information, please contact:

Janice Tranberg
President and CEO, ACFA
jtranberg@cattlefeeders.ca
(403) 542-5830

New ACFA/NCFA President & CEO Janice Tranberg

Non-refundable checkoff defeated, cattle group moving on
ABP leaders say they wish more had cast ballots but the issue is now in the rear-view mirror

Opinion: Healthiest diets include meat and dairy, say health professionals
CALGARY HERALD Updated: December 8, 2018

We have read the opinion article titled “Health Canada’s new Food Guide is on the right track” (Calgary Herald, Nov. 27) with interest. We represent a growing number of Canadian physicians and health professionals, called the Canadian Clinicians for Therapeutic Nutrition, who use whole-food nutritional strategies, which often include meat, eggs and dairy, to prevent and often put into remission the burden of chronic non-communicable disease in our patients. This usually involves lower levels of carbohydrates and higher levels of natural fats than is currently recommended, a therapeutic nutritional strategy well supported in the literature.

More Canadians turning to plant-based proteins: report
Canada’s Food Price Report 2019

Canadians are showing more and more interest in reducing meat consumption, while increasing their purchases of plant-based proteins, according to data compiled in the latest Food Price Report from the University of Guelph and Dalhousie University.

Government of Alberta Employment Standards Update
Minimum age for employment in Alberta is going up

The new rules don’t apply to volunteers, contractors, youth employed on farms and ranches, or to casual work such as babysitting or snow shovelling.

Alberta feedlot harnesses the power of sun

Solar panels supply some power on this feedlot, but they probably wouldn’t be here without government funding

Market Update: Strong consumer demand is using up beef supplies

Feedlot operators should also look to hedge up about 50 per cent of their production later in November when fed cattle prices are expected to make seasonal highs. It looks like the fed cattle market will experience a similar pattern as last year over the winter period.

It’s decision time on beef checkoff

Get out and vote is the main message coming from Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association chair Ryan Kasko and his counterpart at Alberta Beef Producers.

Feeder associations hire new executive director
Barbara Duckworth, The Western Producer

‘It’s change they’re afraid of’: We asked beef farmers what they think of supply management

 “I understand (dairy’s) trepidation, but there are hundreds of thousands of other farmers that are being potentially hung out to dry if NAFTA fails because of supply management,” said Ryan Kasko, a cattle feeder from near Lethbridge, Alta.

Ryan Thompson, owner of Living Sky Beef near Minton, Sask., laughed at the argument that food safety is tied to market controls. “To say that monopolizing a market will ensure safety, they’re not even connected,” he said. “It’s change they’re afraid of, but I firmly believe that the milk produced in Canada is the highest quality in the world, and I don’t think they need to be afraid of some other country coming in and taking their market,” said Thompson. “Canadians will pay for Canadian milk because that’s what they want to buy, and I don’t think it matters if there’s U.S. or New Zealand or European milk on the shelf.”

Canadian farmers struggling with labour shortage seek changes to Temporary Foreign Worker program

In Alberta, the two agricultural sectors that rely the most on foreign workers are the greenhouse and the cattle feeding industries. Bryan Walton, CEO of the Alberta Cattle Feeders’ Association, said at some feedlots up to 10 per cent of the workforce is made up of foreign workers.

“Our members require foreign workers to augment their Canadian workforce, and they can’t get applications proved in a timely manner,” Walton said. “Those who don’t really understand agriculture are setting the policy, and that is creating a lot of discomfort for us and our members.”

Feedlots to benefit from new animal care audit

“Dr. Joyce Van Donkersgoed, feedlot veterinarian, was instrumental in developing the audit program with the National Cattle Feeders’ Association. Canadian facilities JBS and Cargill Meats, and Tyson’s at Pasco, Washington, are involved with the program as are retailers and some companies like McDonald’s.

The program has received certification and approval from the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO), National Farm Animal Care Council and the Canadian Roundtable on Sustainable Beef.

It is available online and is offered in English, French and Spanish. It includes low-stress animal handling videos online.”

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

CHANGES TO THE ALBERTA IMMIGRANT NOMINEE PROGRAM EFFECTIVE JUNE 14, 2018
Summary of the AINP program and Alberta Labour’s changes provided by Newland Chase.

Third generation continues legacy on Alta. farm
ACFA Past Chair, Martin Zuidhof is in the news!
The Western Producer, March 1, 2018

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