What do you mean by premium priced? It seems like just having expensive cattle will limit your market to those who could afford Mrs. Astors polo pony. Expensive and readily marketable seems like a contradiction in terms unless you can figure a way to build in some value for the buyer. Why not concentrate on a marketable breed and figure out a way to do it better? High quality animals will,over time,consistently return more than the fad of the year. High purchase prices don't guarantee anything after you buy them. Of course, we don't know what your plan is.
Our general game plan is to maximize sales on a dollar/acre basis.
Beef cattle like herefords and angus are a possibility but we want to explore other avenues that may have a greater return. We are interested in any livestock that may be considered premium, exotic or even rare if there is a niche market for selling it. Our farm is 120 acres so we have a very limited space. We want to utilize it to produce quality and not quantity.
Thanks for your input. - Jim
Interesting business concept! Suppose some of the people on East coast with 1 or 5 acre "ranches" could be talked into about anything...lol
Any breed has top end premium priced high-quality animals that sell for tens of thousands of dollars. However, perhaps 99% of the rest of the animals sell for whatever the going market rate is.
We all know what happened to the ostrich, emu, and other fads where the few entrepreneurs made fortunes only to dump the fad onto unsuspecting buyers hoping to make it big. In the end, you couldn't pay someone to take an ostrich or emu. And, the "late-comers" lost their money and some lost their homes and savings in the process.
Farm raised alligators probably sell well to make shoes and handbags. Longhorn hides and other body parts bring high dollar.
How about breeding and selling 250 lb mature sized cattle for backyard ranching? :roll:
Sorry I'm so caustic or pessamistic... There is no legal short-term or easy way to riches and fame. If there were in the livestock business I'm not sure the holder of that information would be willing to share the secrets...unless, perhaps, she/he decided to sell books, manuals, and video packages on one of those sleezy late night infomercials....
Good question Jim.
I take it you are gathering info to formulate a business plan and want to know how to best utilize the resources you have.
As you know, cattle prices, as do other markets, cycle up and down. I hear they are a' bit high' right now.
The problem with exotics or new fads is that they can run way up in price and then one day they collapse and never come back to where they were. Sometimes a market can fall so fast that you can't get out in time. So the people that make the big money are the ones that know when the time comes to get out.
I think Chuck had a good idea. You might want to consider a more conventional breed and buy high end genetics.
It may be a good idea to get information on what breed(s) are popular in your area, or gaining in popularity. These numbers should be available from your state ag dept. or university.
Seek out the thinking of 'real' cattlemen in your area that make a living out of cattle. ( I have to disqualify myself on both counts).
Waygu is known for their high marbling(highest instance of genestar marbling breed). I finally saw this breed in the flesh last spring. The ones I saw were horned (cut off) big in the front and no muscling in the rump. They were "normal" sized. Frame 5-6. He crosses his bulls with Charolais and Angus and others. He hasn't sold to the Japan market in a few years.
Jim, science is coming along ways. It is so that breeds can be tested for certain genes. Weither it be marbling or tenderness. And I'm sure there will be more coming up soon. So now we don't have to rely on the good ol "my breed is the best". It will come down to "my cow is the best in my breed because he/she has the lab tested DNA to breed in to the offspring to be easy keepers, marbling, tenderness, muscle, most end product, ect"
There are so many varibles beyond the basic management that cattlemen can weigh now that were not avalible 5 years ago so easily.
So when it will come all down to it, it will be what gets the most end product in the packing plant for the consumer in either the mainstream market or other markets for your least output.
If you can find information or lots of information where different breeds were tested in the same feedlot per test and feed the same thing(know that the feedlot was not breed bias makes a huge difference also) and killed in the same plant, ect then you can see an apples to apples comparision. Other wise it is oranges to apples. EPD's will mean anothing across breeds. So don't compare that. One breed in particular does not want to be compared with other breeds using the same base of fomula.