Intern Andrew Mainini was able to make the trek to Buffalo for the 2017 Wyoming Cattle Industry Convention & Trade Show. His biggest takeaway from last week was the changes in the beef industry and how it will start to be labeled and sold. He was also able to get in on a little bit of the haying action back at the E Bar U Ranch.
This week I was fortunate enough to attend the Wyoming Stock Growers Association Convention in Buffalo, Wyoming. One topic of the convention that stuck out to me was that Wyoming beef would now be labeled with not only a product of the USA label, but also origin of birth and origin of slaughter. I believe this to be critical to marketing beef across the globe because it will add more value to beef by letting people know where it came from. I think this will increase the beef price for consumers here in the U.S., but I believe the public will feel better about buying beef that was produced locally, thus not having much effect on beef sales. Australia is in a major drought and that has forced the Japanese markets to transition to only selling U.S beef. This has created a major demand for U.S. grown beef across Japan. Along with the increase in Japanese exported beef, the newest and possibly most exciting new market is China. The Chinese public is mostly made up of middle to high-class citizens; this means that most of the general public would have the means to afford American beef. One important demand that China has for importing American beef is that it must be labeled birthplace origin and slaughter origin. Now that Wyoming is transitioning to these types of labels, it is likely that a majority of Wyoming beef will be leaving the country and headed to be sold at foreign markets. The first shipment to China is predicted to be sent on July, 17th of this year.
While I was in Buffalo for the convention, hay season officially kicked off here on the E Bar U. An early and wet spring brought plenty of forage and should produce a good hay crop this year. It was vital to cut and bail the cool season grasses before they went dormant for the summer and lost all their nutritional value.