Understanding EPDs and Genomic Testing in Beef Cattle (2023)

Expected progeny differences (EPDs) have been applied to improve the genetics of beef cattle for almost four decades. Expected progeny differences are predictions of the genetic transmitting ability of a parent to its offspring and are used to make selection decisions for traits desired in the herd. For a given trait, EPD values are calculated based on data submitted by producers to breed associations from an animal's actual performance, performance of progeny, performance of other relatives, and genomic data (DNA analysis, if available).

When DNA information is available, EPD accuracy is improved, and these calculations are referred to as a Genomic-enhanced EPD (GE-EPD). Thus, in addition to pedigree, performance and progeny data, GE-EPDs utilize genomic test for increased reliability of an animal's EPD (Eenennaam and Drake, 2012; Rolf et al., 2014).

Source: American Angus Association

Combined with all available sources of information, GE-EPDs are the best estimate of an animal's genetic value as a parent. Genomics permit better accuracies for younger animals and allows a clear picture of genetic traits of interest, especially those that are expensive to measure such as feed efficiency, carcass traits in breeding stock, reproductive traits or maternal traits in bulls.

When a producer buys a young bull that has GE-EPDs, he is buying with the same level of confidence in that animal as one that has already sired between 10 and 36 calves, depending on the trait. In this way, GE-EPDs increase accuracy in those animals much earlier in their lives. With all these benefits, keep in mind that genomically-enhancing the EPDs does not change how the EPD can be used, it just increases its accuracy.

Table 1. Progeny Equivalents (PE) – Carcass trait PE equate to actual carcass harvest data, not ultrasound scan equivalents.

TraitPE
Calving Ease Direct26
Birth Weight23
Weaning Weight27
Yearling Weight23
Dry Matter Intake12
Yearling Height17
Scrotal Circumference15
Docility12
Claw Angle10
Foot Angle10
Heifer Pregnancy17
Calving Ease Maternal20
Milk36
Mature Weight15
Mature Height9
Carcass Weight15
Carcass Marbling11
Carcass Ribeye17
Carcass Fat14

Source: American Angus Association (www.angus.org).

EPD Accuracy

Accuracy (ACC) reflects the precision of a prediction for a given animal's EPD and provides us with a level of confidence for that animal's genetic merit. Bulls with greater accuracy values may be called "proven sires."

The EPD prediction of genetic merit for a trait is the best indicator of expected performance of future progeny, which is expressed as deviation from the population's base value. Recognizing that base values may be different among breeds is important; some breeds use an average within a specific year, whereas other breeds use a nonspecific historical point.

To improve the accuracy of EPDs for younger bulls, producers may collect and submit DNA samples, which, depending on the trait, may equates to about 10 progeny records for a sire with no other progeny records contributing to his EPDs. As more progeny data are obtained for a sire, the relative contribution of genomic data to overall EPD accuracy is reduced.

(Video) EPDS AND GENOMICS 101 - Expected Progeny Difference EXPLAINED

The lack of confidence associated with EPDs on young cattle comes from not having progeny or performance data, both of which increase the accuracy of the EPD. In young bulls, for example, most of their genetic value is based on their pedigree. As these animals age and have offspring, we know more and more about their genetic merit. This increased confidence is denoted by an increase in the accuracy value (0–1 scale) associated with each EPD. It does not necessarily mean that the EPD increases if accuracy increases. It just means the EPD becomes closer to the true value, whether it increases or decreases. Remember that EPD stands for expected progeny difference. Genotyping a young animal increases accuracy because SNP genotypes have similar value to evaluating additional progeny.

How to Use EPDs

Before getting started with EPDs, producers should define their specific production goals first and then select based on the EPDs that will best allow them to meet those production goals. For example, producers selling calves at weaning may prioritize EPDs differently than producers wishing to retain heifers or producers wishing to retain ownership through the feedlot. Therefore, producers should use EPDs based on the selection of breeding bulls that meet their personal production goals.

Here are some traits that can be used by those producers who sell the entire calf crop at weaning or following a backgrounding phase:

  • Birth Weight (BW);
  • Calving Ease (CE) or Calving Ease Direct (CED);
  • Weaning Weight (WW);
  • Yearling Weight (YW).

Selecting for these traits adds ease to the beef producers daily workload, by attempting to reduce the number of assisted births, while adding sale value (with weight) to those calves that will be sold as feeders.

For producers who retain replacement heifers, the following EPDs are often used in addition to the previous list:

  • Calving Ease Total Maternal (CETM), Calving Ease Maternal (CEM) or Maternal Calving Ease (MCE);
  • Milk Production (Milk) or Maternal Milk (MM);
  • Total Maternal (TM), Maternal Weaning Weight (MWW) or Maternal Milk and Growth (M&G);
  • Mature Weight (MW) or Mature Cow Weight (MCW);
  • Maintenance Energy (ME);
  • Heifer Pregnancy (HP or HPG);
  • Stayability (STAY);
  • Mature Height (MH);
  • Scrotal Circumference (SC or SCR).

These traits are all related to the predicting the success of replacement heifers at becoming valuable dams in the herd.

Producers who raise their own animals through the feedlot will often focus on the traits below, in addition to the maternal traits previously mentioned:

  • Carcass Weight (CW) or Hot Carcass Weight (HCW);
  • Fat (Fat) or Back Fat (BF);
  • Marbling (MB, MRB or MARB)
  • Yield Grade (YG);
  • Shear Force (SHR);
  • Rib-Eye Area (REA or RE).

In this case, the traits selected are value traits for cattle marketed at the end of life.

Example 1 of Using EPDs for Bull Selection

In this example, a producer is looking for a Charolais bull to use on black Angus-influenced cows that have had at least two calves. In this case, the producer is using the Charolais in what is called a terminal cross, all calves being sold at weaning or after a backgrounding period for slaughter. The producer wishes to maintain calving ease and have the benefit of enhanced weight at the time of sale. Based on the table below, which bull would be more appropriate for the stated purpose based on EPD values?

Table 1. Charolais bulls1 for use on mature crossbred females.

BullCEBWWWYWMCEMILKSCRCWREAFATMARB
A11.6-427583.9231.1200.660.0410.18
B2.9359992.212.1490.960.0410.22
Breed Average3.10.724.443.847.90.614.70.260.0020.04

1Bulls information retrieved from Select Sires Beef and Genex.

With the focus on this phase of production, emphasis should be given mainly to 3 traits: CE, BW, and WW. We are assuming that these bulls are most likely young and have low accuracies, or are not proven.

Calving ease (CE) relates directly to the bull's pressure on birth weight. Bull B is expected, on average, to have 8.7 percent fewer unassisted births when bred to 2-year-old heifers than Bull A (a disadvantage if breeding to heifers). Bull B has an expected birth weight that would be 7 pounds heavier, on average, than Bull A. Thus, while clear that Bull A would be more appropriate for breeding heifers, our producer is interested in breeding multiparous cows. Therefore, because bull B has a BW EPD that is only 2.3 lb. heavier than the breed average, the producer likely will want to put their emphasis on other traits. Examination of the WW EPD indicated that Bull B would be expected to produce calves that are 32 pounds heavier at weaning, on average, than Bull A. This difference is what usually drives sales and profits at weaning. Thus, if the producer decides to sell calves at weaning time, Bull B may be the appropriate choice. In addition, while perhaps not as important if the producer sells at weaning, this producer may also want to look at YW and some carcass traits when selecting their bulls. In this case the logic is that selling high quality calves at weaning that will perform well around yearling age and through the feedlot may create a reputation of raising high-value calves that are profitable for feedlot owners. Because this is a terminal cross, no heifers will be retained, and maternal traits can be ignored.

(Video) How Genomic Testing Improves Dairy Cattle Herds

Selection by Index

Now, in addition to individual trait selection using EPDs, animals can also be selected on an "index". An economic index is a tool used to select for several traits at once based on a specific breeding objective. An economic index approach considers genetic and economic values as well as the relationships between traits to select for profit. When genetic improvement is desired for several traits that may differ in variability, heritability, economic importance, and in the correlation among their phenotypes and genotypes, simultaneous multiple-trait index selection has been more effective than independent culling levels or sequential selection (Philipsson et al., 1994; Garrick and Golden, 2009).

These are some examples of the economic indices offered by breed associations. Each breed association has many more selection indices and producers are encouraged to investigate these options.

From the American Angus Association (AAA, 2020):

  • Beef Value ($B), an index value expressed in dollars per head, is the expected average difference in future progeny performance for postweaning and carcass value.
  • Combined Value ($C), expressed in dollars per head, is an index which includes all traits that make up both Maternal Weaned Calf Value ($M) and Beef Value ($B) with the objective that commercial producers will replace 20% of their breeding females per year with replacement heifers retained within their own herd.

From the American Hereford Association (AHA, 2020):

  • Baldy Maternal Index (BMI$) is an index to maximize profit for commercial cow-calf producers who use Hereford bulls in rotational crossbreeding programs on Angus-based cows.
  • Certified Hereford Beef Index (CHB$) is a terminal sire index in which Hereford bulls are used on British-cross cows and all offspring are sold as fed cattle on a CHB pricing grid.

From the American Simmental Association (2020):

  • All-Purpose Index (API) is an index that evaluates sires for use on the entire cow herd (bred to Angus first-calf heifers and mature cows), with the portion of their daughters required to maintain herd size retained and the remaining heifers and steers put on feed and sold on grade and yield.
  • Terminal Index (TI) is an index that evaluates sires for use on mature Angus cows, with all offspring put on feed and sold on grade and yield.

Example 2 of Using EPDs for Bull Selection

A producer is looking for an Angus bull to breed a straight-bred Angus herd. The producer plans to retain ownership of the females to use in the breeding herd and sell the calves at weaning. Thus, maternal traits of the females will be important.

Table 2. Angus bulls1 for use on straight-bred Angus females.

BullCEDBWWWYWCWMarbREFat$M$W$F$G$B
A16-0.668129621.81.11-0.0286279124120244
B16-2.564118320.420.530.04651786938106
Breed Average2312645220.420.320.00852548244126

1Bulls information retrieved from Select Sires Beef.
2Breed average retrieved from The American Angus Association.

To address the producer's goal as stated, we can look at the Maternal Weaned Calf Value ($M) because it provides an indication of expected maternal ability and profit based on sale of weaned calves. Bull A will produce calves that will profit, on average, $11 more than Bull B using the $M. Bull A will be the better buy for this scenario where female retention and weaned calf value are both important.

Across-breed EPD Comparisons

Within a breed, EPDs can be directly compared. Bulls of different breeds can also be compared, but adjustment factors to the EPDs are needed because an EPD from one breed evaluation is not directly comparable to an EPD from another breed evaluation. Since 1993, the U.S. Meat Animal Research Center (USMARC) has produced a table of these adjustment factors so that the merit of individuals can be compared across breeds.

Example 3 of Using EPDs for Bull Selection

In this example, suppose a producer needs to make a decision between a Simmental bull and a Limousin bull to breed his crossbred cow herd. The important traits for him are BW, WW, YW, and Milk.

Table 3. DEPs from different breeds to use on a commercial crossbred herd.

BullCEBWWWYWMilkDOCYGCWREAMarb
Simmental117.1-3.96895.726.37.4-0.2228.20.580.35
Limousin1141.76190218-0.73161.238

1Bulls information retrieved from Select Sires Beef.

(Video) DNA Testing in Beef Cattle

With the above information, the producer also needs to access the table below:

Table 4. Adjustment Factors to Estimate across-breed EPDs.

BreedBirth Wt. (lb)Weaning WT. (lb)Yearling Wt. (lb)Maternal Milk (lb)Marbling ScoreaRibeye Area (in2)Fat Thickness (in)Carcass Wt. (lb)
Angus0.00.00.00.00.000.000.0000.0
Hereford1.4-16.5-44.4-12.5-0.300.02-0.073-71.1
Red Angus2.6-19.4-31.41.5-0.030.25-0.040-13.2
Shorthorn4.5-34.4-46.6-0.1-0.070.47-0.0325.6
South Devon2.6-29.9-55.43.1-0.530.64-0.213-68.8
Beefmaster4.023.41.17.7
Brahman10.353.314.416.70.03-0.166-35.9
Brangus3.114.95.312.9
Santa Gertrudis5.240.439.816.8-0.440.12-0.085-12.3
Braunvieh2.2-21.1-46.64.1-0.611.00-0.100-53.4
Charolais6.632.723.28.1-0.290.79-0.2015.1
Chiangu2.8-21.1-36.22.5-0.470.59-0.142-19.3
Gelbvieh2.9-15.5-27.18.2-0.370.66-0.0661.5
Limousin2.5-16.9-53.9-2.4-0.030.59-0.024-5.1
Maine-Anjou2.4-30.3-55.2-7.0-0.430.95-0.179-35.1
Salers0.9-11.2-48.05.60.071.08-0.177-47.6
Simmental2.8-11.6-19.21.8-0.120.45-0.049-7.5
Tarentaise2.720.2-12.115.7

aMarbling score units: 4.00 = s1°0; 5.00 = Sm00
Source: US Meat Animal Research Center (2020) through Beef Improvement Federation.

With both tables of information, a table for across breed comparisons can be made, similar to Table 5.

Table 5. Example of using across-breed adjustment factors to convert noncomparable within-breed EPDs to comparable across-breed EPDs.

BullBW (lb)WW (lb)YW (lb)Milk (lb)
SimmentalEPD1-3.96895.726.3
AB Adj. Factors22.8-11.619.21.8
AB-EPD3-1.156.476.528.1
LimousinEPD11.7619021
AB Adj. Factors22.5-16.9-53.9-2.4
AB-EPD34.244.136.118.6

1EPDs are the within-breed EPD values from the breed's genetic evaluation for the bull of interest.
2AB adj. factors are the across-breed adjustment factors from Table 1.
3Across-breed EPDs after adjustment factors are applied to within-breed EPDs.

The across-breed (AB) adjustment factors for BW are 2.8 lb for Simmental sires and 2.5 lb for Limousin sires. The AB-EPD for that trait is -3.9 lb + 2.8 lb = -1.1 lb for the Simmental bull and 1.7 lb + 2.5 lb = 4.2 lb for the Limousin bull. The expected birth weight difference of offspring when both are mated to cows of another breed (e.g., Angus) would be -1.1 lb - 4.2 lb = -5.3 lb. At weaning, the Simmental bull will produce heavier calves. This weight difference becomes more evident at yearling age, when the expected yearling weight of the Simmental bull offspring will surpass the Limousin bull offspring by almost 40 lb. On top of that, its daughters will produce, on average, 9.6 lb more milk than the daughters of the Limousin bull. Therefore, the Simmental bull will be easier on heifers (lower birth weight), provide faster growth pre- and post-weaning, and have daughters that produce more milk.

Benefits of genomic testing females

Selecting females for replacement is one of the most challenging aspects of commercial cow-calf production. Also, heifer development is an expensive proposition. Therefore, producers may decide whether a given heifer can be productive and profitable before she has had an opportunity to express productivity associated with profitability, including fertility, calving ease, milking ability, growth and mature size. By using a good breeding strategy and being specific about selection principles, producers can raise the right replacement heifers for the herd to optimize profitability. Genomic testing enables seedstock and commercial beef producers to make more informed decisions, and with more confidence, and capitalize on animals with superior genetic merit.

Genotyping females can help producers know where their heifers are genetically, so that they will be able to make bull selection with more confidence (Pryce and Hayes, 2012). Focusing on profitability indexes that include health traits, performance, carcass quality, and maternal traits, the commercial herd as well as the pure breed herd will steepen the genetic progress curve and herd will be more profitable, creating better genetics long term. Genomic testing is that frontier that allows us to get the most value with the least amount of inputs through smart selection pressures.

It is important to keep in mind that success in the cattle business is a function of both genetics and phenotype. The best genetics may still occasionally produce offspring with poor feet and legs that will not hold up well in pasture or feedlot systems. Understanding how and where the herd is excelling and where changes need to be made can help producers make improvements. Keep in mind that single trait selection, selecting, for example, solely on milk production, is usually a disaster. Cattle genetics must be selected to fit the environment and production practices of the operation or the operation they will be marketed to. Know what your market wants and learn how to provide the type of cattle that fit that market by applying appropriate selection principles.

Summary

For seedstock producers, genomic testing is a no-brainer and the way of the future. The adoption of this technology by seedstock producers has already begun to determine their success in the market. For commercial cattlemen, as genomic testing costs continue to drop, genotyping females should become increasingly popular to capture extra value.

Herds with a superior genetic profile have a fundamental advantage over other herds and, in many cases, will outperform their contemporaries over their lifetime. When young animals are part of a genetic improvement program, the use of GE-EPDs on the bull side and genomic testing on the heifer side are critical. Using good selection techniques will allow producers to select and develop the right replacement heifers and consistently mate them to complementary sires to optimize profitability.

Implications

Remember, EPDs need to be used in conjunction with operation goals and resources. Limited available feed may limit the how aggressively you select for traits that requires a great deal of inputs and knowing what creates value for your marketplace will result in focusing on traits that are relevant. Your genetic parameters may be different from someone else based on your environment, so focus on your needs. Remember, cattle must still be sound structured and reproductive to last, grow, and reduce your workload. A balanced approach is crucial for a sustainable enterprise, and that includes making sure that your genetics still match your system with desired physical features that will last in your system and meet buyer demand.

(Video) Genomic Enhanced EPDs

Bibliography

American Angus Association. 2020. Combined Value Index - December 13, 2019 Update Accessed on April 21st, 2020.

American Angus Association. 2020. Value Indexes. Accessed on April 21st, 2020.

American Hereford Association. 2020. Trait Definitions. Accessed on April 21st, 2020.

American Simmental Association. 2020. Quick Reference to ASA EPDs and $ Indexes. Accessed on April 21st, 2020.

Beef Sires by Breed. 2020. Accessed on April 16th, 2020.

Beef Sires Catalog. 2020. Accessed on April 16th, 2020.

Garrick, D. J., Golden, B. L. 2009. Producing and genetic evaluations in the United States beef industry of today. J. Anim. Sci. 2009, 87: E11-E18. DOI: 10.2527/jas.2008-1431.

Kuehn, L., and Thallman, M. 2019. Across-Breed EPD Table and Improvements. Accessed on April 15th, 2020.

Philipsson, J., G. Banos, and T. Arnason. 1994. Present and future uses of selection index methodology in dairy cattle. J. Dairy Sci.77:3252–3261. DOI: 10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(94)77266-0

Pryce, J., Hayes, B. 2012. A review of how dairy farmers can use and profit from genomic technologies. Animal Production Science 52, 180-184.

Rolf, M. M., Decker, J. E., McKay, S. D., Tizioto, P. C., Branham, K. A., Whitacre, L. K., Hoff, J. L., Regitano, L. C. A., Taylor, J. F. Genomics in the United States beef industry. Livest Sci. 2014;166:84–93. DOI: 10.1016/j.livsci.2014.06.005

Van Eenennaam A. L., Drake D. J. 2012. Where in the beef-cattle supply chain might DNA tests generate value? Anim. Prod. Sci. 52:185–96. DOI: 10.1071/AN11060

FAQs

What is a good CED EPD number? ›

As a cattle producer, you know your cowherd better than anyone. If the bulls used on first-calf heifers have averaged a +6 for the CED EPD for several years and you have yet to pull a calf, then a +6 CED bull is a safe option.

How is EPD genetics calculated? ›

This is a calculated figure of one-half the bull's weaning weight direct EPD plus his milk EPD. For example, Bull A has a maternal weaning weight value of 13, which is equal to half of his weaning weight direct EPD (20/2=10) plus his milk EPD (3).

How do I read EPD numbers? ›

EPDs defined

For example, if Bull A has a birthweight EPD of +9.0 lbs and Bull B has a birthweight EPD of +3.0 lbs, this means that Bull A's calves will have birthweights that are 6 lbs heavier than whatever the birthweight of Bull B's calves are, on average.

What is the importance of EPD and what information may be obtained from an EPD? ›

EPDs provide a measure by which animals within a breed can be compared to one another for their genetic potential as parents for specific traits. EPDs incorporate multiple sources of information, including full pedigree, an animal's own record, genomic data, and progeny information.

How do you read EPD for cattle? ›

EPDs are measured in units of traits, such as pounds. For example, a bull with a +70 weaning weight (WW) EPD compared to a bull with a +60 WW EPD is expected to produce calves 10 pounds heavier if mated to the same group of cows and managed under the same conditions.

Which cattle EPD is most important? ›

MATERNAL TRAITS

The two important maternal EPD traits I look at are 1) Maternal Calving Ease and 2) Milk.

What is the most important EPD trait? ›

EPD Traits

All of the breed associations that have EPD report four traits: Birth Weight — in pounds at birth, excluding maternal influence. Birth weight is the most important factor in Direct Calving Ease (see below).

How is the accuracy of an EPD determined? ›

Accuracy can be defined as the relationship between the estimated EPD of the animal and the "true" EPD of the animal. This relationship is expressed numerically from zero to one. As the accuracy value approaches 1.0, the EPD reported is more likely to represent the true genetic merit of the animal.

What is a good weaning weight EPD? ›

We believe the range for an ideal commercial cow is 1050-1250 lbs. She should wean 45-65 percent of her body weight while breeding back in a timely manner every year. This range takes into account year to year differences in feed availability, age of cow, and differences between ranches.

What do the EPD numbers mean? ›

Expected Progeny Difference (EPD) , is the prediction of how future progeny of each animal are expected to perform relative to the progeny of other animals listed in the database. EPDs are expressed in units of measure for the trait, plus or minus.

What is an average EPD? ›

An average EPD is one which declares average results covering more than one product and/or manufacturing site. In order for different products to be declared in the same average EPD, they need to: Perform the same or similar function. Have the same or similar manufacturing processes (technology and raw materials)

What is considered the optimal frame score range for beef cattle? ›

The generally preferred range for carcass weights of 650 to 850 pounds suggests the need to produce feeder cattle with a 5 to 7 range in frame scores. The current USDA feeder cattle grading system is based on the factors of frame size and muscle thickness.

What are the benefits of an EPD? ›

Taking EPDs into consideration when selecting building materials for the construction of a new development or renovation project can help specifiers meet client sustainability requirements, reduce the environmental impact of the building and even achieve green building certification, such as BREEAM or LEED.

What information does an EPD contain? ›

An Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) report tells the life cycle story of a product in a single, comprehensive report. The EPD provides information about a product's impact upon the environment, such as global warming potential, smog creation, ozone depletion and water pollution.

What is the target price for EPD? ›

Stock Price Target EPD
High$36.00
Median$32.00
Low$28.10
Average$31.74
Current Price$25.00

What EPD predicts? ›

“EPD” is an acronym for the term “Expected Progeny Difference”. It is a prediction of the difference between the average performance of future progeny of an animal and the average performance of a theoretical reference animal (an animal with an EPD of zero).

How do you interpret expected progeny difference? ›

Greater number indicates a greater fleshing ability of progeny, compared with a lower number. MB, MRB, MARB = marbling – This is the expected difference in adjusted marbling score of a sire's progeny, expressed in percent. A greater number indicates a greater potential quality grade.

What is a Type 3 EPD? ›

Product Specific Type III EPD (Third-Party Reviewed)

This is the most thorough type of EPD, which covers a single product from a manufacturer and is reviewed by a third-party entity. It also conforms to ISO 14025 and either EN 15804 or ISO 21930.

Are cattle EPDs accurate? ›

Most yearling bulls have accuracies from . 05 to . 35 for growth traits since the calculation of his EPD is based on his own performance record and pedigree information. Older bulls with progeny information records used in the calculation of their EPD will have higher accuracy values.

How long usually is the validity of EPD? ›

An EPD is usually valid for five years, and is generated according to the relevant standards. Construction EPDs are based on the ISO 14040/14044, ISO 14025, EN 15804 or ISO 21930 standards.

What is the most important trait for beef cattle to have Why? ›

One of the most important functional traits of a beef cow is udder and teat conformation, and they appear to be heritable.

What is the most important trait in beef? ›

Marbling, or intramuscular fat, is the primary factor determining USDA Quality Grade, an indicator of the palatability factors of tenderness, juiciness, and flavor. Marbling increases with age up to physiological maturity and generally is higher in earlier-maturing and higher-milking types.

What is a highly desirable trait in beef cattle? ›

Major Performance Traits for Beef Cattle

Reproductive Performance or Fertility. Maternal Ability. Growth Rate. Feed Efficiency. Body Measurements.

Are estimated breeding values accurate? ›

More than 90% accuracy - the EBVs are a high accuracy estimate of the animal's true breeding value. It is unlikely that EBVs will change considerably with addition of more progeny data.

What does API mean in EPD? ›

Listed below are the units ASA EPD are expressed in: All-Purpose Index (API): Dollars per cow exposed under an all-purpose-sire scenario.

Which EPD is the best indicator of the calving ease of a bull when bred to heifers? ›

“When we use birth weight EPDs, that's a good indirect measurement of calving ease. The biggest indicator of direct calving ease is birth weight,” Bertrand points out.

What is the average weaning weight for beef cattle? ›

Expected Calf Performance

Weaning weights (205-day steer equivalent) for early weaned calves were 435 lbs, compared to 347 lbs for calves raised by their dams on summer bermuda pasture. The calves weighed an average of 155 lbs at the time of early weaning.

What weight do you wean beef calves? ›

In most situations you would aim to have calves at least 12 weeks of age or around 100kg live weight before weaning. By this age they require less protein and they are used to grazing or eating other foods.

How do you read EPD gelbvieh? ›

EPDs are measured in the units of the trait, and show the differences in performance between animals. For example, if Bull A has a weaning weight EPD of 80, and Bull B in the same herd has a weaning weight EPD of 70, then bull A's calves would be expected to be 10 pounds heavier at weaning than those of bull B.

What does $en mean in cattle EPDs? ›

Expressed in dollars savings per cow per year, $EN assesses differences in cow energy requirements as an expected dollar savings difference in daughters of sires. A larger value indicates more dollars saved on feed energy expenses and, therefore, is more favorable when comparing two animals.

What does YW mean in EPD? ›

In a typical EPD, growth traits such as birth weight (BW), weaning weight (WW), yearling weight (YW) and Milk are often reported.

What does MCE mean in EPD? ›

Maternal Calving Ease (MCE)

For example, if sire A has a MCE EPD of 7 and sire B has a CE EPD of -3, then you would expect on average if comparably mated, sire A's daughters would calve with a 10% more likely chance of being unassisted when compared to sire B's daughters.

Which of the following is the main standard for an ISO EPD? ›

EPDs are based on International Standards

The concept of EPDs is based on the standard ISO 14025, which is internationally recognized and developed with in the International Organization for Standardization.

What is a PCR for EPD? ›

A PCR is a copyrighted document that is part of the EPD "cookbook" and contains the recipe to create a high-quality EPD for the product category you are interested in. The PCR provides the instructions for how the life-cycle assessment (LCA) should be conducted.

What are the 2 main factors used to determine beef quality grades? ›

Quality can be identified as those factors that affect the palatability of tastefulness, flavor and juiciness of the meat. Quality grading on beef carcasses is determined by two subjectively scored factors in all cases where color, texture and firmness of lean are normal.

What are the 8 quality grades for beef cattle? ›

There are eight total quality grades: Prime, Choice, Select, Standard, Commercial, Utility, Cutter and Canner. They have been used by the beef industry since 1927. The first three quality grades — Prime, Choice and Select — are the most commonly recognized by consumers and are considered food-grade labels by USDA.

What height should a cattle crush be? ›

The width of the crush depends upon the size of cows. The rump rail shall be at least 1.28m high and consist of at least 3 fixed rails and one drop rail (a total of 4 rails). The three fixed rails shall be located from 440mm above floor level to 980mm above floor level.

How is EPD used in livestock selection and breeding practices? ›

EPDs are calculated using production data submitted to the breed associations by registered seedstock members. This information is input into statistical matrices to develop the estimated Page 2 breeding values of animals based on ancestral data, individual performance data, and progeny data as it becomes available.

What is the difference between EPD and LCA? ›

An Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) is a third-party verified document that is officially registered to show the environmental impact of a product or service. To construct the EPD, an LCA is used to calculate the impacts which will be included within the EPD according to specific standards (e.g. EN 15804).

Will EPDs become mandatory? ›

While EPDs are not mandatory for material providers, there is a clear incentive to get one. Carbon calculators will most likely advantage products with an EPD because they can provide accurate data. Products without an EPD will fall under 'average data', which is regarded as lower quality, and awarded lower scores.

What is the EPD process? ›

EPD Process Certification

verification of an internal organisational process aimed to develop EPDs based on the General Programme Instructions and valid reference PCRs covered under the scope of certification. EPD process certification shall be conducted by an accredited certification body.

What is the difference between HPD and EPD? ›

What is the Difference Between an HPD and an EPD? An HPD is a self-declared list of ingredients in building materials by the product manufacturer. An EPD (Environmental Product Declaration) is based on specific rules and requirements for each product type which is verified by a third party panel.

How do you find EPD? ›

I know my manufacturer/product, how do I find out if they have an EPD? If you know the manufacturer of your building product, you can find it by writing down the manufacturer/product name in the resource field.

Which is better EPD or ENB? ›

According to our system of comparison, EPD is a better buy in the long-term than ENB.

What is EPD payout ratio? ›

EPD's dividend payout ratio is 83.6%, which is sustainable.

Who owns the most EPD stock? ›

Enterprise Products Partners (NYSE: EPD) is owned by 26.87% institutional shareholders, 63.68% Enterprise Products Partners insiders, and 9.44% retail investors. Randa Duncan Williams is the largest individual Enterprise Products Partners shareholder, owning 974.47M shares representing 44.79% of the company.

What does CED stand for on an EPD? ›

So when calving ease is important consider the following EPDs: Calving Ease Direct (CED), is expressed as a difference in percentage of unassisted births, with a higher value indicating greater calving ease in first-calf heifers.

What is EPD value? ›

For a given trait, EPD values are calculated based on data submitted by producers to breed associations from an animal's actual performance, performance of progeny, performance of other relatives, and genomic data (DNA analysis, if available).

How accurate is an EPD? ›

EPDs have been estimated to be over seven times more reliable than adjusted weight records, ratios, and visual appraisal. Even on young bulls with relatively low accuracy values, EPDs are our most objective indicator of the animal's genetic merit.

What is a good birth weight for cattle? ›

Calving difficulty ranged from 3 to 20 percent and birth weights from 68 to 90 pounds.

What is yield on EPD? ›

Historical dividend payout and yield for Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) since 2000. The current TTM dividend payout for Enterprise Products Partners (EPD) as of October 24, 2022 is $1.90. The current dividend yield for Enterprise Products Partners as of October 24, 2022 is 7.60%.

Videos

1. Genomic Evaluation and Selection in Cattle
(NCBA's Cattlemen to Cattlemen)
2. Genomic Testing Workshop Recording
(Angus Broadcasting Canada)
3. DNA Technology in Beef Cattle - Matt Spangler - July 26, 2013
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4. Using Genomics in the Evaluation of Cattle
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5. Current State Genomic Selection Tools for Beef Cattle (March 2013)
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6. Tools for Genetic Improvement in Beef Cattle
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