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What is ‘Beef on Dairy’?

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Beef On Dairy is a producer-led practice of crossbreeding beef cattle genetics to dairy cows. Through ‘beef on dairy’ crossbreeding, offspring destined for the fed beef market become more efficient and robust when compared to purebred dairy calves. In addition to providing economic and production efficiencies, ‘beef on dairy’ can also provide environmental benefits, resulting from feed efficiency, as well as animal health benefits from hybrid vigor.

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Benefits of ‘Beef on Dairy’


Behind the Science


Webinar: Implementing Dairy Beef Production Systems for Sustainable Agriculture

Webinar: Implementing Dairy Beef Production Systems 
for Sustainable Agriculture
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Webinar: Implementing Dairy Beef Production Systems for Sustainable Agriculture



Hear from Producers

Jerry Wulf

Riverview, LLP/ Wulf Cattle

  • Year-round availability for feedlots 
  • Tightly held genetic population of dairy dams  ​
  • Consistency in marketing availability for packers
  • Improved cutability from straight bred dairy animals 
  • Consistent carcasses—with the right management and genetics

"By doubling productivity of the dairy segment and improving sustainability of the beef sector through ‘beef on dairy’ crossbreeding, one beef on dairy cow produces enough milk for 2,200 lbs. of cheese per year and births a beef calf resulting in an 875-lb. carcass." 

Jerry Wulf

Fiscalini Farmstead

Fiscalini Farmstead

  • Started ‘Beef on Dairy’ practices in 2016
  • Cross-bred calves have increased revenue for the operation
  • Cross-bred calves are generating better calving scores
  • Saw immediate cash flow improvement when making the switch to ‘Beef on Dairy’

"My belief is that crossbred calves will always be more valuable than dairy animals being sold for beef." 

Brian Fiscalini, 4th generation family farmer

Vander Woude Dairy

Vander Woude Dairy

  • Started ‘beef on dairy’ practices in 2012
  • Accelerated the genetic improvement of Holstein herd  ​
  • Generated a new beef enterprise that sells more than 3,000 beef calves a year at an average weight of 550 lbs.
  • Operation can milk cows longer and feed less heifers  

"We started genomic testing all young animals in 2012 to strategize both how many heifers we needed as well as which animals we wanted to get our next generations of genetics from. The balance of the cows or heifers were bred to Angus to create a nice crossbred calf. It was an opportunity to keep milking cows longer while adding value to their offspring whether for my replacement use or a “better” beef calf." 

Simon Vander Woude, Vander Woude Dairies



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