News Releases

Date: 7/17/2010

Title: Factors Affecting Calf Value

DENVER - In a study designed to gain knowledge of the current link between market pricing and genetic, management, and marketing decisions, Kansas State University researchers collected feeder cattle market data on 84,319 head marketed through auction markets during the late fall of 2008 and the spring of 2009. The data collected represented approximately four months of historical cash price information.

Researchers collected information on lot size, sex, color, breed, condition, fill, muscle, frame size, weight uniformity, freshness, horn presence, time of sale, weight, and price. In addition to details of individual transactions, a time series of feeder cattle futures prices was collected to approximate market conditions. A pricing model was applied to estimate the impact of various physical characteristics and market factors on feeder cattle pricing.

While several categories were important in their influence on cattle value, the researchers found that on-farm management of weight, health, condition and horn presence significantly affected feeder cattle prices. Breed type, uniformity, lot size fill, sale location and time of sale also influenced the price received by producers.

For more about the study, visit

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