Blue Grass Stockyards and Top Dollar Angus Establish Partnership Around Shared Vision
Denver CO, May 11, 2020 – Blue Grass Stockyards and Top Dollar Angus will collaborate around a shared vision to significantly expand the number of Top Dollar Angus verified cattle east of the Mississippi River.
The goal is to utilize existing genetic technology to reduce feeder cattle procurement risk while increasing cow-calf producer profits. EPDs to verify and market superior genetics have existed for decades in the registered seedstock industry. These same tools, combined with more recent DNA testing capabilities, can also be beneficially used in the procurement of commercial feeder cattle.
“Cattle feeders are looking for superior genetics that grow rapidly and grade well,” said Tom Brink, Top Dollar Angus founder and CEO of the Red Angus Association of America. Brink spent more than a decade managing risk and cattle procurement for one of the largest U.S. cattle feeding entities. “Cattle that dollar-up better for everyone in the supply chain from rancher to feeder and on to the packer and consumer are worthy of premium prices at every stage of production. Identifying those cattle early in their life is what Top Dollar Angus is all about.”
As the beef industry’s leading provider of genetic verification, Top Dollar Angus works diligently throughout North America connecting ranches to other industry segments in the beef supply chain. “We utilize genetic and genomic information to verify profit potential and eliminate unknowns,” said Jared Wareham, general manager for Top Dollar Angus. “There are large numbers of premium quality cattle east of the Mississippi River. The challenge in the past has been locating, aggregating and channeling them through processes that make procurement and valuation easier and more precise. Our teams jointly believe there is a tremendous opportunity to work with cattle producers throughout the region to unlock a largely untapped resource of cattle with premium genetics.”
Jim Akers, Blue Grass Stockyards COO, says “We’ve been studying value-added marketing programs for several years and feel that Top Dollar Angus stands out in its customer service and in the way it brings recognition to producers with top-end genetics. Blue Grass sees a tremendous opportunity to support our current customers in a new way, while also growing our network throughout the eastern U.S.”
As part of the arrangement, Blue Grass field personnel will represent, service, and promote all Top Dollar Angus verified cattle east of the Mississippi. Their team will work directly as an extension of the Top Dollar Angus team to objectively qualify groups of feeder calves and breeding females, and also to support the substantial network of Top Dollar Angus seedstock partners producing the premium Angus and Red Angus genetics that flow into the nation’s commercial cowherds.
Wareham further explains, “The team at Blue Grass has decades of experience marketing cattle successfully in the eastern part of the country and in working with herds of all sizes. Plus, they have the integrity and trust of the agricultural community earned through a long history of creating success for each customer.”
The beef cattle industry is undergoing a major trend in the direction of third-party health and genetics verification. More than ever, cattle buyers want more information and documentation on the feeder cattle they intend to bid on. Margins are tight in every segment of production, which is fueling the movement toward more precision buying. By working together, Blue Grass Stockyards and Top Dollar Angus will help Eastern U.S. producers take full advantage of the genetic investments made each time they purchase bulls. Tools, such as genomically-enhanced EPDs, have become the accepted methods to add precision in the process of selecting breeding bulls. Utilizing those same technologies along with commercial-herd DNA tests to add efficiencies to feeder cattle procurement is the next step.
Blue Grass Stockyards is a 75-year-old company based in Lexington, Kentucky which operates 7 sale barns as well as an internet/video marketing system. Blue Grass has vast experience in the value-added marketing of feeder cattle through many different programs and has a network of service providers and sales representatives serving most areas of the Eastern U.S.
Top Dollar Angus, Inc. was founded in 2014 with the sole purpose of bringing differentiated identity and market recognition to Angus- and Red Angus-influenced feeder cattle and calves that objectively rank in the top 25% of the population for growth and carcass traits. In 2019, Top Dollar Angus conducted business in 26 states and Canada and continues to expand its core business by encouraging cow-calf producers to produce superior genetics and through helping them get rewarded on sale day.