Beef Production in Arkansas
The average beef cattle herd size is 35 head with 80 percent of the farms having less than 50 head. About 97 percent of the beef cattle farms in Arkansas are family owned and operated.
Beef cattle producers who use our recommended management practices improve their beef cattle efficiency and profits. The Animal Science department uses educational activities including county programs, field days, electronic news articles, beef/forage field days, demonstrations, ration balancing, 300 Day of Grazing Program, and more, to educate Arkansas cattle producers on best practices.
Improving production efficiency and product desirability through each segment of the beef cattle industry rests with purebred breeders and commercial cattle producers. They determine the matings that produce beef and replenish breeding stock.
Generally success or failure in the cow/calf business depends to a large extent upon doing the right things at the right times. This is especially true when it comes to beef cattle reproduction management. Reproduction is the single most important factor in a cow/calf operation. After all, you can't sell calves if you don't produce them.
A herd health management plan is vital to profitable beef production. Some producers, however, do not vaccinate until they experience a loss. The investment in disease prevention is less than the cost of disease treatment. Don't wait until a disease outbreak occurs before implementing a sound herd health program. For cattle to reach their performance potential, they must be healthy.
Because feed costs are the major cost of producing beef, using feeds most efficiently is of prime importance in determining profits. Rations must be properly balanced so that feeds are used efficiently and cattle remain healthy. Ration balancing and understanding proper nutrition is an important management tool the producer can use to maximize profits.
The GoGreen program was created to promote pre-marketing best management practices. Qualifying calves are recognized by the GoGREEN program tag.
The Grass to Grid program provides Arkansas adult and youth cattle producers an opportunity to retain ownership of calves through feedlot finishing and marketing.