Cattle producers have always paid attention to the finished weight of their beef cattle as well as how long it takes them to reach those weights. But until recently, they couldn’t tell how much their animals were eating to reach those weights.
GrowSafe technology tags individual animals and measures how much they eat by weight as well as how often they feed, which means the beef industry can now tell how efficiently animals convert their food into marketable weight.
Lakeland instructor Geoff Brown notes the importance of this kind of research for producers, particularly when the cost of livestock feed is on the rise. “This kind of technology and information really helps us understand the dynamics behind what drives feed intake and performance in cattle,” he says. "This is a necessary step for the beef industry to increase efficiency and reduce the carbon footprint of beef production.”
GrowSafe equipment was purchased with the support of the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada. Alberta Rural Development Network provided funding to network with industry regarding the best applications for GrowSafe research.