At the 2024 Cattlemen’s Congress in Oklahoma City, Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays, had the chance to catch up with the Executive Vice President of the American Hereford Association, Jack Ward, about the year 2023 for the Hereford breed.
“Our fiscal year ends in August, and so we came out of that year with our registration cow inventories kind of, very similar year-over-year, from a financial standpoint. Very healthy,” Ward said. “We sold more pounds of Certified Hereford beef.”
The National Junior Hereford Association has also seen growth in 2023, Ward added. In national AHA membership, Ward said there was growth year-over-year, and there was also an increase in prices for Hereford cattle.
“Hereford breeders are an incredible group of folks because they are such good cattlemen,” Ward said. “They are good stockmen. They understand the importance of breeding cattle, from a genetic standpoint, that are strong. They understand technology, whether that be ultrasound or genomics, and because they are good stockmen, they understand what kind of cattle fit their environment and what their customers want and need.”
Beef cattle producers are unique, Ward said, because they make their own decisions on a daily basis, and the success of their operation relies upon those decisions. In the next few years, Ward said he believes there will be a continued focus on capturing commercial data to help boost genetic reliability and potential.
“The independence and identity of producers is still a key part of our business, and I think it will continue to be,” Ward said.
Herefords will be showing at Cattlemen’s Congress Wednesday through Saturday of this week. To see the complete schedule of everything happening at the fourth Cattlemen’s Congress, CLICK HERE.
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