Beef Performance and Carcass Quality Contest Cattle to be Harvested in 2024

In 2024, Jr. beef exhibitors will get into the cooler and actually see what they produced!

In 1995 the Fairfield County Cattleman’s Association created a contest that allowed local junior beef exhibitors the opportunity to participate in a real-world beef production contest that rewarded participants for added market value traits. Continuing since that time the Beef Performance and Carcass Quality (BPCQ) contest has evaluated entries based on a combination of growth, performance, and carcass characteristics.

In the beginning the carcass characteristics of economic significance were evaluated for the contest in the Bay Packing meat cooler after the animal was harvested. In recent years the carcasses have been evaluated using ultrasound technology. In 2024 the carcass evaluation will return to the meat cooler.

While ultrasound technology has served the contest well for several years, it prevented youth from having the opportunity to see firsthand the meat quality of the animal they had raised. Much like the other local county carcass-based program participants, youth in the BPCQ contest will now have the opportunity go into the meat cooler prior to Fair and see first hand the quality grade of their animal and learn how yield grade was evaluated.

In further effort to update the contest and base it on current day profitability factors, the details for scoring will change in 2024. While still based on a combination of growth, performance and carcass characteristics, the final BPCQ contest rankings will be based on the carcass value gained per day from initial weigh-in until conclusion. To evaluate them in this fashion, calves entered in the contest will be assigned a value at the March weigh-in based on pre-determined commercial feeder calf values. At the conclusion of the contest in late September, the carcasses will be evaluated for quality and yield and valued based on a pre-determined beef carcass marketing grid. The difference between the beginning value of the calf and the final carcass value of the calf will be divided by the total number of days on feed resulting in a carcass value gained per day. Final details of the pricing and valuing structure will be available soon.

The basic rules of the contest will include:

  1. An application/essay process for participant acceptance into the contest will be conducted similar to that of the goat, lamb and barrow MQP contests.
  2. Both steers and heifers are eligible to be entered.
  3. The BPCQ entry calf will come from one of the up to four calves exhibitors are eligible to tag/weigh in March.
  4. The entries will be harvested at Bay Packing on a date to be determined in late September or early October.
  5. Like the goat, lamb and barrow MQP contests, exhibitors will be responsible for marketing the freezer beef resulting from their entry.
  6. Carcasses will be evaluated by faculty, staff, or students from the Ohio State University Department of Animal Sciences.
  7. An opportunity for exhibitors to see their carcasses and ask questions regarding the carcass evaluation will be available at the conclusion of the contest.
  8. Like the live market beef show, all BPCQ entries are eligible for the Jr Fair Livestock Sale.

Final details will be announced once final approval for the contest is granted by the Senior Fair Board, and scoring details and valuing grids are determined.

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