Those who can’t attend the 44th Beef Improvement Federation (BIF) Research Symposium & Annual Meeting April 18-20 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Houston, Texas, can watch a live webcast hosted by Liveauctions.tv at www.BIFconference.com. To view the webcast, viewers will need to sign in with a Liveauctions.tv username and password. If you do not have an account, you can sign up for one at www.BIFconference.com or http://liveauctions.tv.

Sessions will begin at 7 p.m. Wednesday, April 18, with keynote speaker Larry Cundiff, retired director of the Roman L. Hruska U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (USMARC), discussing the impact of Bosindicus genetics on the beef industry.

Thursday morning’s general session begins at 8 a.m. and will focus on different aspects of fitting cattle to the environment. After the morning break, presenters will address economically relevant traits for commercial cow-calf production, addressing longevity, selection tools for temperament, reproduction, and weight and carcass merit.

The afternoon will feature concurrent technical sessions of the Emerging Technologies Committee and joint session of the Cow Herd Efficiency and Selection Decisions committees. The latter will focus on some of the current industry discussion on feed efficiency and will be included in the webcast.

Ron Gill will host a stress-free cattle-handling demonstration Thursday evening at the Fort Bend County Fairgrounds, beginning at 7 p.m.

Friday’s general session, which begins at 8 a.m., will address what the National Beef Quality Audit means to different segments of the beef retail chain. Speakers will represent the cow-calf, feedlot, beef processor and retail segments. After the break, presenters will focus on epigenetics and fetal programming.

Three committees — Producer Applications; Live Animal Carcass and End Point; and Genetic Predictions — will host concurrent technical sessions to conclude the conference program. Angus Productions Inc. (API) will offer live coverage of the Producer Application session.

The symposium will include two awards luncheons. Thursday’s luncheon will feature the naming of the Commercial Producer of the Year, Roy Wallace Scholarship Award winners, and BIF Ambassador and Continuing Service Award winners. Friday’s luncheon will feature the naming of the Seedstock Producer of the Year, the Frank Baker Essay Contest winners, and BIF Pioneer Award winners.

API will provide comprehensive coverage of the symposium at www.BIFconference.com. Following the event, visit the newsroom for summaries, PowerPoint presentations, proceedings papers, audio and videos. Visit the awards page for announcements of winners, and the photos page for photo galleries from the meeting and post-symposium tours.

This year’s meeting is hosted by Texas A&M University (TAMU) AgriLife Extension Animal Science and the American Brahman Breeders Association (ABBA). Walk-in registrants are welcome. For more information on the BIF symposium, contact Joe Paschal at j-paschal@tamu.edu or 361-265-9203, or Chris Shivers at cshivers@brahman.org or 713-349-0854. For questions regarding the website, contact Shauna Hermel, API editor, at shermel@angusjournal.com or 816-752-0089.