Cattle Today

Cattle Today



Bozeman, Mont. -- The American Simmental Association (ASA) has recently introduced 70:70 as a new program, to complement SimChoicesv, helping address these multi-faceted value added issues. Jerry Lipsey, Ph.D., Executive Vice President of ASA, stated that, “SimChoicesv is a program designed to add value to age/source identified cattle. Currently, age and source premiums are paid on both feeder and fed cattle. These premiums are substantial because of export requirements, but even without those constraints, the potential to add value by introducing more information and accountability is real.”

Lipsey went on to say, “A second goal of SimChoicesv is to help identify and locate groups of cattle with the genetic ability to meet or exceed industry goals of 70 percent USDA Choice or higher, 70 percent USDA Yield Grade 1 and 2 with reduced levels of “out” cattle. Only by combining the highest value Continental and British genetics for end product value, can these preferred cattle be produced in large numbers. ASA's service provider and partner, Micro Beef Technologies, headquartered in Amarillo, Texas, through their CattleLog Animal Information System makes the SimChoicesv age and source validation process both viable and easy to use.”

The newest addition to ASA's plan to help producers capture value is the 70:70 beef-pricing grid, offered in cooperation with JBS Swift & Co. through their plants in Grand Island, Nebraska, and Greeley, Colorado. It is a complementary program to ASA's SimChoicesv and 70:70 designed to promote carcass pricing based more closely on beef cutout value and consequently enable producers collect premiums for age and source verified cattle. By offering premiums for both carcass quality and cutability, value is assigned more equitably. The $3.50 per cwt. premium for age and source verified cattle is one of the highest in the industry, paying a $28.00 premium for an 800 pound carcass and a $31.50 premium for 900 pound carcasses. Therefore, by using SimChoiceSV and 70:70 in combination, the potential to access significant premiums exists. Cattle that are age and source verified through other USDA approved Process Verified Programs are also eligible for premiums through the 70:70 pricing grid.

“Breeding, then identifying valuable cattle is only the beginning. The ultimate reward is capturing the added value created by superior harvest,” according to Marty Ropp, Director of Field Services for the ASA.

There are several ways to create value for the down chain users of beef. Here are three:

1) Simply produce cattle with superior marbling and cutability in combination. “U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (MARC) reports confirm that Simmental genetics offer outstanding growth rates and rank first among Continental breeds for marbling,” said Lipsey. “The ASA has an established reputation for scientific and innovative genetic evaluation and performance-testing. This new program will help preserve and promote the identity of SimGenetics.”

2) Increasing retail meat yield is another major factor that must be addressed. When two USDA Choice carcasses are processed and one loses 10% of its value post harvest because of fat trim loss, that carcass causes financial injury to the entire beef production system. This animal created too much cost to produce and was simply over valued at harvest.

3) An increasingly important strategy to capture value is to add information and/or branding qualifications to the product. Proof of age, source, process validation, and adding a recognized brand to products, are examples of value enhancement strategies.

Additional information on 70:70, SimChoiceSV, and other ASA services may be obtained by contacting Marty Ropp, Director of Field Services at 406-581-7835; Janinne Story, Animal ID/Ultrasound specialist at 406-556-9616; by visiting; or by calling your Simmental seed stock supplier.

Headquartered in Bozeman, Montana, the American Simmental Association maintains the breed registries for the Simmental and Simbrah breed of cattle. The organization has an active adult and junior membership of more than 8,000. For more information, please visit


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