Since I have started analyzing Western Video Market data, ranchers have significantly changed and enhanced their vaccination programs. In the 1997 data, only 20% of ranchers marketed cattle with respiratory vaccinations. The most recent data (2018) indicate that virtually all producers market lots with respiratory vaccines given prior to delivery. The flexibility of the video auction format and the detailed sales catalog allows ranchers to provide extensive vaccination descriptions including brands of vaccination, date administered, and frequency. This blog considers the question: do ranchers that market their cattle with branded vaccination programs (e.g., Zoetis or Western Video Market) earn ...
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The value-added management and marketing programs available to cattle ranchers creates substantial ranch-level complexity and often considerable uncertanity. While all of the programs are likely to add costs, the additional income generated is uncertain and likely variable. Given that lots of cattle sold typically participate in many programs and management decisions must be made months or even years prior to sale, it is nearly impossible for ranchers to forecast the premium associated with implementing any one program. This post focuses on the premiums/discounts for the most common value-added management and marketing programs for lots marketed in 2018.
Cattlemen today are faced with the challenge of determining which programs will differentiate their cattle on sale day while maximizing the profitability of their operations. With the help of detailed lot-level auction data and modern statistical methods we can gain considerable insights into the value associated with particular programs and management practices. This is the first in a series of blogs designed to provide ranchers more information about the premiums for value-added management, marketing, and vaccination programs with the most up to date data (2018).