Enhance palatability, processing, and marketing of beef by studying instrument grading, beef flavor and tenderness technologies, and carcass cutting strategies. Develop science-rooted strategies and technologies to reduce food borne illness and improve the effectiveness of policies related to food safetyand trade. Determine factors influencing domestic and international consumer preferences for beef. Assess supply chain management strategies to identify and overcome barriers that interfere with the transmission of consumer preferences to producers. Evaluate the cost/benefit of traceability and assess its value in market-based programs.
NON-TECHNICAL SUMMARY: Traceability of livestock through the production chain is being demanded by the consumer but can add substantially to the cost of production for producers. Develop methods that facilitate traceability of livestock at minimal additional expense. A major effort in this project will be directed to identify alternative solutions to reduce cost of animal ID technology.
APPROACH: We will compare producer costs and benefits associated with participating in animal identification programs such as the voluntary NAIS or market-driven programs. This analysis will be extended to incorporate an examination of the costs and benefits associated with developing identification protocols to market cattle with specific certifications. The analysis will be accomplished using conventional or electronic ID technologies for livestock operations of different sizes (scales), types, and type of certifications. This analysis will consider different ID strategies for different segments of the industry (i.e., cow calf, seedstock,s tocker, feedlot). ID strategies include determining ways to ensure that the value of data transfer up and down the supply chain exceeds the costs of collecting and passing data through the chain. The method is to compare costs of collecting and passing information compared to the value of increased efficiencies or improved prices. For example, this information could be used to improve genetics or to determine the appropriate certification program in which to market or the foreign markets to target. Using these procedures, investigators will assess the cost of compliance with NAIS, conduct risk assessments along different segments of the supply chain, compare the costs and benefits associated with incremental changes in technology and selection of market segment, and identify alternative solutions to reduce cost of animal ID technology.
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