Since their creation in the 1960s, US beef cattle improvement programs have predominantly focused on improving output-related traits through genetic selection of beef seed stock cattle. Such traits historically included economically relevant weight and carcass traits by much of the seedstock industry and, more recently, fertility traits by a few select breed associations. However, during that time almost no emphasis was placed on cost-related traits, including feed intake, feed efficiency,and/or feed utilization associated with the output traits, based on the absence of genetic predictions for these traits by US beef breed associations (Rumph, 2005). The apparent lack of interest in selecting cattle based on economically relevant cost traits has probably been due to relatively low-priced feed inputs (at least up until late 2006) and high costs associated with individually measuring feed intake in cattle.
|Title of host publication||Feed efficiency in the beef industry|
|Editors||Rodney A. Hill|
|Place of Publication||Ames, Iowa|
|Number of pages||13|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|