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Simmental vs Hereford Bull

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Little Joe

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I have a neighbor that has simmental cross cattle and runs a black blaze faced simmental bull, occasionally they’ll throw stocking legged calves and he gets docked pretty heavy on those. He keeps saying he’s gonna swap to angus bull because of the stocking legs, I don’t think he would have that problem if his cows weren’t heavily simmental influenced as well. He always has nice calves.
 

Ky hills

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I just find it absolutely ridiculous that a calf gets docked because of color and markings. There’s too many out there now breeding for color and not disposition, conformation or quality. I’ve seen lines of horses and dogs ruined by doing that.
I do too, it’s nothing short of sham that there is a dock on quality calves because of color. I also agree that disposition and other areas like feet/leg structure, and maternal traits are being bred out of them. We raise our own beef and absolutely no difference between Angus and Hereford meat quality wise that we have seen. The only difference is the shameful dock that Herefords get on the market.
 

simme

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I just find it absolutely ridiculous that a calf gets docked because of color and markings. There’s too many out there now breeding for color and not disposition, conformation or quality. I’ve seen lines of horses and dogs ruined by doing that.
Just some thoughts I have. I could very well be wrong and encourage others to disagree and straighten me out.
Once the hair and skin are off, there can't be any exterior color bias applied to the carcass, It gets graded like any other carcass. So, those who are able to retain ownership through the feedlot are much more likely to eliminate any color bias impact and get paid for the value of the carcass. If you go that route, there are a lot of things to worry about other than color. If you sell at an auction, the bias is present not due to any conspiracy - but due to supply and demand. A free market economy. If you look at the ownership after weaning, the calf might be purchased by a stocker operation who later sells to a feedlot who later sells to a packer. At each point of ownership changes, the seller hopes to sell as high as possible, but the buyer hopes to buy as low as possible. With price determined by supply and demand. There are probably buyers involved who have orders to buy certain quantities of animals of a certain type. And they are buying for multiple people. The buyer is trying to fill the order he has been given as close as possible based on what the new owner wants for his conditions and his experience with types of cattle and his belief about relationship between breed composition (real or perceived) and appearance as relates to the new owner being able to make a profit off the cattle. Many issues here including beliefs/experience about health, growth, cost of gain, carcass quality, frame, appearance, making a load of similar cattle, weather/environment where they are going, etc. These issues occur each time ownership is transferred and maybe the evaluation of worth is a little less biased as it moves though the supply chain. Point of my rambling - the cow-calf guy is the bottom of the supply chain and can be rewarded for matching his supply to fit the demand in his marketplace.
Now, it seems that this color thing is much more pronounced in the US than other countries and more so in some regions of the US than others. Anyone have opinions on why that is the case? But, I still think it is just supply and demand.
Hog and chicken production pretty much eliminated this with their meat due to going to a narrow genetic line (they are all white and efficient) with most animals owned by a few companies.
 

A.J.

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I always figured someone down the line makes a lot of money off of the odd-marked beef calves, because they can grow out and grade just like solid colored/traditional-marked calves. I’m referring to the ones that are obvious they don’t have dairy, longhorn, etc in them, but might carry similar markings. Good looking calves that might have Skunk tails, extra chrome, etc. It makes you sick to get beat up on those calves at the market, but you’re at the mercy of the buyers if you don’t raise Calves like that for beef or feed out Yourself, unfortunately. I’ve got a cow or two with old style Simmy in them that will throw extra chrome sometimes on their calves, and they sell way back from the solid black or more solid colored calves even though they are the same quality, and the only difference is the fur color.
 

VaCowman

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Iam looking for a new bull. I have always used Reg Angus bulls in the past. Iam think of buying either a Hereford or Simmental bull. All my cows are black or black white face. Which one would you use ?
How do you market your calves? Straight off the cow, weaned/pre-con 60d, etc., value-added sale or sale barn?
 

Ky hills

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Just some thoughts I have. I could very well be wrong and encourage others to disagree and straighten me out.
Once the hair and skin are off, there can't be any exterior color bias applied to the carcass, It gets graded like any other carcass. So, those who are able to retain ownership through the feedlot are much more likely to eliminate any color bias impact and get paid for the value of the carcass. If you go that route, there are a lot of things to worry about other than color. If you sell at an auction, the bias is present not due to any conspiracy - but due to supply and demand. A free market economy. If you look at the ownership after weaning, the calf might be purchased by a stocker operation who later sells to a feedlot who later sells to a packer. At each point of ownership changes, the seller hopes to sell as high as possible, but the buyer hopes to buy as low as possible. With price determined by supply and demand. There are probably buyers involved who have orders to buy certain quantities of animals of a certain type. And they are buying for multiple people. The buyer is trying to fill the order he has been given as close as possible based on what the new owner wants for his conditions and his experience with types of cattle and his belief about relationship between breed composition (real or perceived) and appearance as relates to the new owner being able to make a profit off the cattle. Many issues here including beliefs/experience about health, growth, cost of gain, carcass quality, frame, appearance, making a load of similar cattle, weather/environment where they are going, etc. These issues occur each time ownership is transferred and maybe the evaluation of worth is a little less biased as it moves though the supply chain. Point of my rambling - the cow-calf guy is the bottom of the supply chain and can be rewarded for matching his supply to fit the demand in his marketplace.
Now, it seems that this color thing is much more pronounced in the US than other countries and more so in some regions of the US than others. Anyone have opinions on why that is the case? But, I still think it is just supply and demand.
Hog and chicken production pretty much eliminated this with their meat due to going to a narrow genetic line (they are all white and efficient) with most animals owned by a few companies.
I think you are correct in that the way the current market system works is that cattle change hands several times and one of the easiest ways to make money is to buy cheaper. From what I can gather the color dock is nothing but a sham to get some cattle cheaper. Probably if every calf was black then there would just be other arbitrary factors besides quality to come up for a dock. It’s like a shell game, or a bar that keeps moving
 
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pricefarm

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How do you market your calves? Straight off the cow, weaned/pre-con 60d, etc., value-added sale or sale barn?
It depends on the year. I usually wean my spring born calves and feed them through the winter and sell the following spring. My fall calves I usually wean and sell them around August.
 

VaCowman

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How far are you from Dublin? We've sold with the Dublin Feeder Cattle Assn. for several years now on the TeloAuction and we've been pleased. They do dock the reds, but we rarely have a red calf nowadays. You should check it out if you are close. Abingdon FCA does a bang up good job getting cattle sold on the VCA's Board sales as well. The Carroll/Grayson group has just started up a marketing group on the TOA, and they too are starting to get some impressive numbers and getting them sold well too.
 

callmefence

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Just some thoughts I have. I could very well be wrong and encourage others to disagree and straighten me out.
Once the hair and skin are off, there can't be any exterior color bias applied to the carcass, It gets graded like any other carcass. So, those who are able to retain ownership through the feedlot are much more likely to eliminate any color bias impact and get paid for the value of the carcass. If you go that route, there are a lot of things to worry about other than color. If you sell at an auction, the bias is present not due to any conspiracy - but due to supply and demand. A free market economy. If you look at the ownership after weaning, the calf might be purchased by a stocker operation who later sells to a feedlot who later sells to a packer. At each point of ownership changes, the seller hopes to sell as high as possible, but the buyer hopes to buy as low as possible. With price determined by supply and demand. There are probably buyers involved who have orders to buy certain quantities of animals of a certain type. And they are buying for multiple people. The buyer is trying to fill the order he has been given as close as possible based on what the new owner wants for his conditions and his experience with types of cattle and his belief about relationship between breed composition (real or perceived) and appearance as relates to the new owner being able to make a profit off the cattle. Many issues here including beliefs/experience about health, growth, cost of gain, carcass quality, frame, appearance, making a load of similar cattle, weather/environment where they are going, etc. These issues occur each time ownership is transferred and maybe the evaluation of worth is a little less biased as it moves though the supply chain. Point of my rambling - the cow-calf guy is the bottom of the supply chain and can be rewarded for matching his supply to fit the demand in his marketplace.
Now, it seems that this color thing is much more pronounced in the US than other countries and more so in some regions of the US than others. Anyone have opinions on why that is the case? But, I still think it is just supply and demand.
Hog and chicken production pretty much eliminated this with their meat due to going to a narrow genetic line (they are all white and efficient) with most animals owned by a few companies.
Best ramble in some time and spot on. No conspiracy, simply order buyers filling their orders. Calves going to stocker operations that will later either sell to feeder's or retain ownership. Either way calves that perform poorly will not earn. The more a calf fits the "type" the better chance it is the "type". That's why your spots, skunks and etc get docked. Because there's more uncertainty in what the end product will be.
 

anewcomer

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Simme and Fence, you’re dead on target. 20 years ago I worked for an order-buying firm. An almost universal description on our stocker cattle orders from customers was “No Simmentals, Herefords or Gerts ( Santa Gertrudis)”. There was a belief at that time by the great majority of these stocker operators that these breeds, at that time, were more susceptible to disease and less vigorous in the stocker phase than other cattle. Long held beliefs die hard.
 

Little Joe

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Best ramble in some time and spot on. No conspiracy, simply order buyers filling their orders. Calves going to stocker operations that will later either sell to feeder's or retain ownership. Either way calves that perform poorly will not earn. The more a calf fits the "type" the better chance it is the "type". That's why your spots, skunks and etc get docked. Because there's more uncertainty in what the end product will be.
Then why are Hereford and red angus getting docked? I’d have to think red angus would be as good as black, and I’ve finished some Herefords that were a superior beef.
 

Little Joe

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And I agree it’s not the order buyers, they’re just buying what they’re told and it’s not the barn or auctioneer because it’s to their benefit to get as much as they can from an animal.
 

Little Joe

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Simme and Fence, you’re dead on target. 20 years ago I worked for an order-buying firm. An almost universal description on our stocker cattle orders from customers was “No Simmentals, Herefords or Gerts ( Santa Gertrudis)”. There was a belief at that time by the great majority of these stocker operators that these breeds, at that time, were more susceptible to disease and less vigorous in the stocker phase than other cattle. Long held beliefs die hard.
Well I hate to tell them but around here a lot of the black calves are simmental.
 

callmefence

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Then why are Hereford and red angus getting docked? I’d have to think red angus would be as good as black, and I’ve finished some Herefords that were a superior beef.

Then why are Hereford and red angus getting docked? I’d have to think red angus would be as good as black, and I’ve finished some Herefords that were a superior beef.
Because the buyers are not getting orders for Hereford and red Angus. Stockers.
 

Little Joe

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I’m not arguing with what you’re saying I just can’t grasp how the idea came along that if it’s black it’s gonna finish better. I have a longhorn cross black motley faced calf that looks like my neighbors simmental calves, my neighbor even stated how he looked like his calves but you and I both know he won’t finish as efficiently as a simmental but if I ran him through right now someone would get stuck with a high dollar longhorn cross because right now he don’t show any longhorn features. He fits the bil of the black calves they’re looking for.
 

Ky hills

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Then why are Hereford and red angus getting docked? I’d have to think red angus would be as good as black, and I’ve finished some Herefords that were a superior beef.
Exactly, the excuse that black hided and presumably Angus are more likely to grade good and more predictable is out the window with red angus. Red Angus are the same breed, and easily identified as such. These buyers know to the letter what breed they are seeing The Hereford dock is ridiculous too because they are a British breed with carcass characteristics similar to Angus. .
 

callmefence

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I’m not arguing with what you’re saying I just can’t grasp how the idea came along that if it’s black it’s gonna finish better. I have a longhorn cross black motley faced calf that looks like my neighbors simmental calves, my neighbor even stated how he looked like his calves but you and I both know he won’t finish as efficiently as a simmental but if I ran him through right now someone would get stuck with a high dollar longhorn cross because right now he don’t show any longhorn features. He fits the bil of the black calves they’re looking for.
There is always someone who will buy what is considered a higher risk investment at a discount.
If you have winter wheat pasture to stock you get to put in the order for what you want. Here char x calves may bring more than blk. But it's ranchers buying those calves. The buyers work for them.
 

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