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Once the member feedyards of Beef Marketing Group (BMG) had agreed to market their cattle together, the next step was to develop a relationship with one packer, rather than gather bids every week. First that packer was Excel, then IBP (now Tyson). “Bruce Bass [head cattle buyer for IBP] and I put the agreement together in 1993,” says Lee Borck, BMG’s chairman of the board. “I still have the original agreement hanging on my wall.”
While the cattle industry has made leaps and bounds in terms of cattle health and production in the past 20 years, shared communication along the production chain has stumbled. Cattle information is frequently lost along the line from the cow-calf operation to the feedyard and every point in between. This can lead to a less than ideal situation for optimal cattle performance.
Wulf Cattle has been focused on integration for decades: selling bulls and semen to producers and buying back the calves to feed and sell to packers. For many years, that model has worked well for this integrated beef producer headquartered in Morris, Minnesota “We thought, ‘Why can’t this work on the dairy side?'” says Wulf Cattle President Jerry Wulf.