As I have been learning more about the cattle industry and living the life of a cow-calf producer, I have been asking “Why?” a lot. Apart from not knowing anything and having to ask that question, I am always looking for a way to do more with less. Knowing why people do things a certain way helps me figure out how to improve on things. One thing I thought I may be able to help with was bringing in more money. I thought about marketing the cattle in a new way.
So I asked “If we are raising Black Angus cattle, and everyone knows that you pay more for a “Certified Black Angus” steak in a restaurant, why are we not selling them that way?”
Hubby said “Yes we can do that.”
What Hubby didn’t tell me was that he had already been there, done that. So I was able to learn first hand that it costs money. You pay more money for the Angus RFID tag and more commission and fees when you sell at an Angus auction. After years of being in the business, Hubby already knew all these things. What Hubby did was sell direct to the order buyers from home. So we didn’t have to truck them to auction, pay any commission or fees and he received a better price than what we received at the auction.
Then I asked about implanting cattle with hormones and why people do it. The more your cattle gain, the more money you make since you are paid by weight. But! I said… If people want beef without hormones, would we not get a premium for our beef since it is hormone free?
Hubby said “We can try.”
So I searched the internet for companies, feed lots, anybody that wanted natural beef and sent out some emails and made some calls. No responses back. When we registered for the auction I made sure to list that the calves were implant and antibiotic free. One buyer had us sign a guarantee before the auction. I was so excited, I thought for sure this would be great. It turns out that a regular buyer bid the most and the natural guy didn’t even come close to the highest bid.
So I have come to realise that I will stick to what I know and let Hubby do what he knows, and that is cattle. I will say that I appreciate him more because he let me learn by doing. He could have just said he had done it before, but he didn’t. Thanks Honey!