Are you marketing your calf crop or simply selling it? Yes, there is a difference. According to North Dakota State University (NDSU) livestock economist Tim Petry, producers must make a conscious effort to market their calves; otherwise, they are just selling.

“The old way of just putting cattle in the trailer and hauling them to town was called marketing at one time, but that is really selling,” Petry explains. “There is an additional effort required in marketing, like verifying and documenting management practices, but that’s what real marketing is all about. The days of just loading up cattle on sale day, hauling them to town and getting top price are done.”

What is involved in the actual marketing process, then? Well, it starts with the cow and bull. In a time of tight margins, feedlot managers don’t want to spend much for calves that don’t come from solid genetics.

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