"My analysis suggests last year wasn't a year to retain ownership but this year just might be."

Many ranchers' first inclination in marketing their 2009 calves is to base it on their 2008 calf crop experiences. That could be a serious mistake, says "Market Advisor" columnist Harlan Hughes. In "Don't market like 2008," the professor emeritus of economics details how marketing signals are changing fast, and looking backward could easily put a marketer 180° out of synch in marketing the current calf crop.

"The animal that works best for us is an animal that is typically 50-75% Angus and 25-50% Continental."

Five Rivers Cattle Feeding, headquartered in Greeley, CO, sells about 1.5 million cattle a year on a grid. In "What Feeders Want,"BEEF Senior Editor Burt Rutherford talks with Tom Brink, senior vice president and chief risk officer with Five Rivers Cattle Feeding, about the formula his outfit, the world's largest cattle-feeding enterprise, uses to guide its cattle-buying decisions.

"It's ironic that the new national buzzword is ‘sustainability,’ yet that is what ranchers have been quietly practicing for 100 years."

The beef industry has taken extraordinary steps the past two decades to make its products even safer, more nutritious and convenient for Americans, writes "Meat Matters" columnist Steve Kay in "Fight back now." Nonetheless, anti-meat groups seriously threaten the industry with misinformation presented to a complacent populace that is naïve about agriculture, he says.