2003 Nominees for
BIF Commercial Producer of the Year

Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

Crider Salers
Joe and Sharon, Mike and Donita Crider, North Dakota

Crider Salers is a family operation located in north-central North Dakota near the small town of Donnybrook. Joe and Sharon started farming and ranching in 1965. Mike, having grown up with the cattle, brought his wife, Donita, into the operation in 1990. Their children — Clinton, 11, and Caleen, 8 — are very interested in the cattle business. Clinton is starting his third year of showing calves through the local 4-H club; Caleen will be starting her first year.

The Criders farm 2,000 acres, on which they grow wheat, barley, oats, canola and alfalfa. They have 3,500 acres of native pasture on which we run approximately 300 Saler-cross cows. They start calving around March 1.

The Criders purchased their first Saler bulls in 1982 and used them on Polled Hereford and Angus cows. Not only did they increase weaning weights, they recognized immediately other economic advantages of Saler cattle. They calved with no trouble and the newborns got up off the frozen North Dakota ground long before other calves.

The Criders say the Saler female has kept them in business. They milk good, they are excellent mothers, have more live calves and more pounds weaned per calf. Through the years they continued using registered Saler bulls and keeping replacement heifers based on the performance records of their mothers. Today the herd is completely Saler-influenced.

The family maintains good records on all their cattle. Every calf gets an identification number, allowing them to zero in on which genetics work and which genetics don’t. In breeding season, they use only one bull per pasture, allowing them to precisely evaluate each bull on just about every economically important trait from birth weight, weaning weight, feedlot performance, health and carcass quality.

Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

Mike Goldwasser, Virginia

A cornerstone of the Goldwasser operation has been retained ownership of the calf crop through harvest. This practice has enabled the operation to realize the full benefits of superior management and genetics.

The cow herd consists of Continental (Gelbvieh, Simmental, Charolais)-Angus-cross cows. Sire selection places heavy emphasis on carcass merit. Mostly Angus bulls have been used in recent years, with all sires ranking in the top one-third of their breed for yearling growth. All have been positive for marbling and ribeye area.

Selection pressure for yearling growth has equated to improved feed efficiency and fewer days on feed for the calf crop. Their target is a calf crop that will grade 80% Choice while maintaining or improving growth rate and efficiency. Genetic progress includes a 100-pound increase in finished live weights with less than a 2% increase in Yield Grade 4s. Close monitoring of genetic lines for carcass quality, and the use of systematic crossbreeding have been important aspects of achieving these goals.

Due to an extensive history of carcass data and feedyard information, along with a desire to add further value to their cattle, Mike organized a partnership with four other like-minded cattlemen to create Blue Ridge Premium Beef LLC. The entity markets a high-quality, branded beef product. All cattle are bred, fed and processed in Virginia. The branded beef product has been marketed direct and to retailers and restaurants since April 2002. All cattle in the program are source-verified and fed without growth implants. Carcasses are "tendercut," aged 21 days, and sold frozen in cryovac packages.

Mike has practiced rotational and intensive grazing, as well as positive conservation practices, for more than 15 years. He says one of their greatest assets is the value of the superior forage available in Southwest Virginia. Cool-season grasses are utilized extensively in the rotation, as is stockpiled fescue. Records of carrying capacity, number of feeding days vs. grazing days, grass yield and rest periods between grazing rotations are used to adjust and make improvements to the system.

Grazing management is a key component to the approximately 500 stocker calves developed each year. Multiple paddocks are valuable for herd health during times of purchasing stockers; as they allow smaller groups to be isolated and monitored.

Click the links below to read articles about Mike Goldwasser.
New Virginia Partnership Offers Natural, High Quality Beef Products—Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Raising the Steaks—Progressive Farmer

Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

Patterson Ranch
Bob Patterson, Colorado

Patterson Ranch is a cow-calf operation owned and operated by Bob Patterson and his wife, Bunny. They have three married children who were raised on the ranch and six grandchildren. Bob is a third-generation rancher and has been involved in his career since the age of six. Bob began Patterson Ranch 35 years ago with 50 head of Angus cows. He now manages approximately 500 head of Angus-cross cattle on 13,000 acres on Mesa de Maya in Southeastern Colorado, which is 12 miles southwest of Kim.

Mesa de Maya is a unique blending of mountains and plains. It combines short prairie grass with high mesa landscapes. Bob uses a summer-winter rotational grazing plan and a spring calving season, which allow for the best use of the high-mesa pastures in the summer. The cattle are brought to lower pastures for care and feeding during the cold winter season. The ranch has excellent wildlife habitat and many species, including deer, elk, antelope, bear and wild turkey share the resources.

Two of the Patterson children own adjoining ranches. All, including the children, work together to make it a family operation.
Bob is committed to the land and to the cattle industry. He believes in producing quality cattle while maintaining the integrity of the land, water and wildlife habitat for generations to come.

Click the link below to read an article from the Colorado Cattlemen’s Ass’n about Patterson Ranch.
Outstanding Producers Honored at Mid-Winter Conference

Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

W.S. Roberts and Sons
Jerry, Randy and Rick Roberts, Indiana

The W.S. Roberts and Sons farming operation is located in Southeast Lawrence County (site of the family’s home farm and has been in the operation for 67 years) and in Northwest Washington County (location of the Roberts’ homes and has been in the operation for 48 years). The Roberts own 1,544 acres and rent 600 acres to produce corn, soybeans, timber, pasture and hay. They have 280 spring-calving cows and 60 fall-calving cows.

The cow herd consists of primarily Angus- or Simmental-based cows and crosses of those breeds. Performance-tested Angus and Simmental bulls have been obtained directly from seedstock producers and bull test stations. Recently, composite bulls of those two breeds have been utilized to maintain breed composition.

In addition to the commercial cow-calf and grain operation (corn, soybeans and wheat), Jerry Roberts is a seed dealer for Garst Seed Company. The family has been involved in seed production and sales since the early 1950s.

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Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

Shriver Farms
Wayne Shriver, Ohio

Wayne and Krista Shriver; their two sons, Ethan and Heath; and Wayne’s parents, Martha and Dean, reside on their southeastern Ohio farm. Wayne and his family own and operate Shriver Farms, where they raise 400 commercial beef cows and 400 commercial ewes.

Wayne is also the manager of the Eastern Ohio Resource and Development Center (EORDC) where he oversees the center’s daily operations, including 400-plus mature cows, two bull-development facilities, heifer growing and development, and 100 ewes used in research conducted by the Ohio State University. Included on the 2,100 acres at EORDC is the Ohio Bull Test, where Shriver was the herdsman for six years prior to becoming the overall farm manager.

The home cow herd originated from a Hereford base, which has now been bred to Angus, both black and red, and a little bit of Simmental. An Estrus synchronization program is used prior to breeding, and each animal is artificially inseminated at least once at the start of the breeding season. Bull selection is based on expected progeny differences (EPDs), with a focus on calving ease, birth weight, yearling weight and carcass traits.

The cows are expected to transform the grasses and legumes on the farm into pounds of production. Cows live on grass and hay, and are provided a good supplemental mineral mix. Stockpiled fescue provides the winter feed source.

Wayne has served on the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association board of directors.

Click on the link below to read an article from the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center about Shriver Farms.
EORDC Manager Receives Ohio Cattlemen’s Award

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Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

Stroud Farms
Wesley D. and Melba Stroud, Alabama

Nestled in the rolling hills of eastern Limestone County, Alabama, the Stroud operation consists of approximately 750 acres of owned and leased land, where the family has been raising beef cattle for more than 48 years.

The operation currently supports about 200 brood cows and replacement heifers, consisting of black Angus, Red Angus and Saler genetics. The average cow at Stroud Farms is a 50% English, 50% Continental cow produced in a back-cross system with the black and red Angus bulls being used interchangeabl.

Cows are maintained on several types of forages adapted to north Alabama. Cattle are rotated between pastures frequently to optimize forage use. Since 1993, the Stroud herd has continually expanded, with weaning performance remaining steady to slightly increasing.

Along with the cow-calf pairs and replacement heifers, Stroud Farms routinely backgrounds calves before they are sent to mid-Western feedlots. Stroud Farms retains ownership on all steer calves and nonreplacement females. This has allowed Stroud Farms to realize a 50% increase in net price per calf over traditional markets. Replacement heifer demand and net price has also increased with the carcass data bank.

There are many creek bottoms and natural riparian areas on Stroud Farms land. The land is managed to minimize erosion, maximize benefit to wildlife and ensure a stable consistent stand of forages on all areas of the farm.

The Stroud operation is a family operation. The daily operation of the farm is done by Wesley Stroud; his wife, Melba; his son, Wes; and his grandson, Samuel.

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Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company

Tailgate Ranch Company
Paul McKie, Kansas

Tailgate Ranch is a commercial cow-calf operation consisting of about 1,500 acres of cool-season grass and legume pastures, 390 acres of brome hay meadows, and 60 acres of alfalfa. Tailgate was formed in 1962 by Paul McKie. The ranch is located at Tonganoxie, Kansas, about 30 minutes west of Kansas City.

The ranch currently consists of about 280 females, including 80 replacement heifers, in our spring-calving herd and 120 cows in the fall-calving herd. The main focus for the last seven years has been developing and breeding high-quality replacement females following a strict culling regime in order to build a superior maternal cow herd. Feedlot and carcass data have been collected to help improve feed efficiency and product quality.

Bred heifers begin calving February 10 and finish within 45 days. Heifers are synchronized and artificially inseminated (AI) once, then exposed to proven, easy-calving Angus and Red Angus bulls used for cleanup. Spring cows, consisting mostly of Red Angus or Angus crosses, calve March 1 through April 15.

Calves are vaccinated prior to weaning, then weaned September 20 and put on growing ration and pasture until steers are either sold or sent to a feedlot. Heifers continue developing on pasture for the AI breeding program. Fall-calving cows, mostly straight Angus, calve September 1 to October 15. Fall calves are generally creep-fed 60-80 days, weaned at 150 days of age, preconditioned and sold as grass cattle. Angus, Red Angus, and Red Angus x Simmental bulls are used on the spring herd. Angus, Red Angus and Braunvieh bulls are used on fall cows.

Click on the link below to read an article from DowAgro Sciences about Tailgate Ranch Company.
Snuffing Cockleburs

Crider Salers : Mike Goldwasser : Patterson Ranch : W.S. Roberts and Sons : Shriver Farms : Stroud Farms : Tailgate Ranch Company