Beef Update

February 2023

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In this Beef Update newsletter, you will find:

  • 2023 Private Pesticide Applicator Trainings
  • Colostrum 101
  • Limit Feeding Cows Corn as an Alternative to Hay

  • Beef Feedlot Roundtables
  • Beef Quality Assurance Trainings
  • Nebraska Women in Agriculture Conference
  • Calculating Annual Cow Costs Webinar Series
  • 2023 Land Application Trainings

If you need assistance evaluating your feeding plan this winter and spring, please don't hesitate to reach out. Wishing you continued success this calving and sale season!

2023 Private Pesticide Applicator Trainings

Upcoming training dates and locations for private applicator certification.

Limit Feeding Cows Corn as an Alternative to Hay

The lack of forage due to drought and current hay prices have producers considering alternative options for feeding cows this winter. One competitive option to consider is replacing some hay in the diet with corn. Since corn has a higher energy content than hay, the cost of feeding hay is often higher than corn on a price per pound of energy basis. For example, corn priced at $6.76/bushel ($241/ton) with a total digestible nutrients (TDN) value of 88% equates to approximately $0.16 per pound of TDN while hay priced at $205/ton with a TDN value of 52% is nearly $0.22 per pound of TDN. Read more.

Beef Quality Assurance

Nebraska Extension and Nebraska Beef Quality Assurance will be offering Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) and Beef Quality Assurance Transportation (BQAT) Certification. Upcoming dates and locations include:

  • Monday, March 6 at 4 p.m. - Crossroads Wesleyan Church in Imperial
  • Tuesday, March 7 at 4 p.m. - Phelps County Ag Center in Holdrege
  • Wednesday, March 8 at 4 p.m. - West Central Research & Extension Center in North Platte

BQA and BQAT certification is valid for three years. The certification fee is $20/person or a flat fee of $100 for operations who bring 5+ people. Register online at or by calling the Panhandle Research and Extension Center at 308-632-1230. Locations with no registered attendance will be canceled.

Additional Calculating Annual Cow Costs Webinar Series

Due to demand, a second webinar series on calculating annual cow costs will be offered starting in late February and running through early April. Being able to calculate and know total cow costs is foundational for evaluating and making management decisions that can improve profitability for a cow-calf enterprise. Significant increases in input costs are challenging producers to examine cost of production and identify where there may be opportunities to adjust the production system. Calculating costs and breaking them into categories gives understanding into where there may be opportunity to make changes.

The webinar series will be held on February 28, March 7, 14, 21, 28 and April 4 from 7:30 - 8:30 p.m. CT. Cost is $60 per person and includes a resource workbook. The course will be limited to 30 participants. To register go to Registration is requested by February 21 to ensure pre-meeting preparation material is available to participants. For questions about the webinar series or for more information, please contact Aaron Berger, Nebraska Extension Educator at 308-235-3122 or

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