With a leap in numbers, the Central New York Beef Producers 2017 Spring Feeder Calf Sale more than tripled in size from the 2016 Fall Sale.
“Through the early winter, after our October 2016 sale, we were pleased to get quite a few calls to include calves in our Spring Sale,” remarked CNY CCE Educator Bill Gibson, coordinator of the CNY Beef Producers and the sales.
Initially there were 110 calves registered for the sale, however, due to unforeseen circumstances, the group ended up at a total of 82 — which was still a huge jump from the 25 registered feeder calves in the 2016 Fall Feeder Calf Sale.
“Our 82 calves came from 11 growers in Otsego and five neighboring counties,” Gibson reported.
Eleven buyers bid on the phone or in person at the tele-auction and bidding sale, which was held at the Otsego Cornell Cooperative Extension office in Cooperstown, NY.
Grading, sorting and videos were done on farm and the groups of feeder calves were featured in a ‘YouTube’ video with information on the sale.
“Bidding was fairly strong,” said Gibson. “We need to make adjustments on mechanics to make the tele-bidding smoother, but we got the job done!”
Gibson reported that previous bidders were repeat bidders for this sale.
“Three of them won bids, and expressed satisfaction with the calves they bought,” remarked Gibson. “For this sale we had six successful bidders. Three from Delaware County, one from Oneida and two from the Finger Lakes region.”
“Our top steer groups of 38 steers averaged $1.38, the heifers averaged $1.25.”
Calf gathering, pick up and delivery took place on April 29, at Hosking Sales, near New Berlin, NY.
“We have entered into a, hopefully, long-term arrangement with Tom and Brenda Hosking to use their facility,” Gibson stated. “Our use of Hosking Sales’ services for the auctioning, delivery and financial collections and payments came from not only their location being central within our region, but the characteristics of their facilities being very clean and sturdy.”
Gibson said the make-shift pens put together at the Otsego Fairgrounds in the fall worked okay for 25 calves, but the huge increase in animals to 80 required “another level” of facilities.
“We feel fortunate to have Hosking’s available,” said Gibson. “This is an improvement and a good partnership.”
A follow-up meeting will provide a time to “hash over ideas” to help improve handling at delivery, grading and the sale — to be ready for a potentially larger number at the Fall Sale.
“We do believe we’re growing and improving!”
Dr. Jim Baker, Cornell Beef Specialist has been a major influence in the CNY Beef Producers group, leading workshops and mentoring the group in many ways.
“He can speak to how our efforts help multiple players in the beef industry,” Gibson remarked.
Using Quality Beef Assurance guidelines and protocol has improved profitability, stimulating infra-structure, and created more business for everybody.
“We need to group cattle together to make marketing more efficient and therefore attract higher prices,” said Baker.
“Our Central NY Beef Producers feeder calf group, of course, tries to complement that by pursuing premium pricing from the marketplace,” confirmed Gibson.
Certified Grader Cattle & USDA Market News Reporter, Thomas J. Gallagher, was on hand for grading and documentation at the finalization of the sale.
“Most of the 79 head of cattle graded M-1 & M-2,” reported Gallagher. “Overall, I would say the sale went well and the buyers I spoke with were pleased with the animals they purchased.”
USDA Market News Reporters are new positions with the USDA.
Gallagher in his new position is Coordinator of an educational program for City of Albany Youth at the City Normanskill Farm.
“Little” Dave Stanton bred the largest number of cattle sold at the sale and he and his dad “Big” Dave Stanton also purchased the largest group sold in a lot of 30.
“For a producer to have his name attached to the calves they are selling tells a lot about the calf,” said Little Dave. “It shows that they have done the best they can at raising the animal and are proud of the results. We’re pleased with the animals we bought. They’re good, honest calves.”
The CNY Beef Producers 2017 Fall Feeder Calf Sale is tentatively scheduled for Oct. 13.
For more information on the sale or the Central NY Beef Producers contact Gibson at firstname.lastname@example.org .