AgCenter Researchers Receive Grant To Study Grass-Fed Beef Production

 LSU AgCenter beef cattle researcher Guillermo Scaglia evaluates
 different forage systems for the production of grass-fed beef.

 Photo by Bruce Schultz, LSU AgCenter

   A group of scientists from the LSU AgCenter and Southern University AgCenter received a grant of $480,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture Foundational Programs to conduct research and outreach activities in the area of grass-fed beef production.
   The project is led by Guillermo Scaglia, who conducts beef cattle research at the LSU AgCenter Iberia Research Station. The grant will allow the researchers to gather comprehensive information on grass-fed beef management practices and build upon knowledge gathered in previous projects.
   “We will look at economics, marketing and breed type effects that will close a gap of missing information needed by producers, extension agents, businesses and other clientele,” Scaglia said.
   On the production side, Scaglia plans to evaluate cattle with different frame sizes and as well as cover crops for grazing under different management practices for producing grass-fed beef year-round.
   The scientists also plan look at marketing grass-fed beef.
   “We will concentrate on understanding how strategic alliances work in the grass-fed beef industry and how ranchers, retailers and restaurants relate with them, the attributes that these alliances have, and which of those are preferred by restaurants and retailers,” Scaglia said.
   On-farm evaluation of the productivity and economic performance of different breed types and cover crops for grazing is an important aspect of the research, he said. Several producers will collaborate with the researchers for this part of the project.
   “We will have the appropriate setting for demonstrating the viability of these practices to producers, agents and other stakeholders,” Scaglia said. ∆
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