In recent years there has been considerable interest in feedlotting as a means of producing beef carcasses with more desirable characteristics (eg. improved fat colour, marbling). This paper outlines the cost of feeding heavyweight cattle on a feedlot ration and the likely premiums required to meet this additional cost. In three experiments Angus steer were fed 70% grain diets ad libitum for at least 14 weeks. In experiments 1, 2 and 3, respectively, steers grew from 621 to 761 kg, 574 to 674 kg and 563 to 657 kg, over 70, 68 and 71 day period, respectively. Feed intakes averaged 15.2 kg of dry matter per day and were 2.2% of bodyweight. Average liveweight gain was 1.60 kg/day and average feed conversion efficiency was 9.5 kg feed per 1 kg of liveweight gain. Based on typical New Zealand feed costs, the average daily feed cost was $3.44 per head and the premium required to recoup the feed cost alone would need to be $1.18 per kg of total carcass weight. Approximately $1.48 per kg would be required to cover all costs.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 55, , 255-256, 1995
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