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Fetal programming: Fact or fiction?

One of the emerging concepts in beef production is that of fetal programming. Increasingly, research is pointing to the importance of adequate cow nutrition in the first and second trimesters of pregnancy, not just the third trimester.

What exactly is fetal programming and how does it affect calf health and carcass quality? Is the concept of fetal programming a passing fad or will it be a paradigm changer in how cow-calf producers look at winter cow nutrition? Will the demand for high-quality beef make it worthwhile for commercial cattlemen to up their game in cowherd management?

This edition of the Beef Roundtable explores those questions and more. This video delves into the issue with Kim Vonnahme and Ron Scott.

Kim Vonnahme is a researcher at North Dakota State University. The long-term objective of her research is to produce healthy beef cow pregnancies that will allow the offspring to optimize their potential. The overall concept is to study developmental programming during gestation on subsequent offspring productivity. Ron Scott is director of beef research with Purina Animal Nutrition, with a focus on developing life-cycle supplementation strategies that increase animal performance and producer profitability. Listen as they discuss the current state of knowledge about fetal programming and how cattle producers can incorporate it into their management strategies. dissect the premiums and discounts in the feeder cattle market.

The Beef Roundtable is a joint project with BEEF and Purdue University. It’s a monthly video podcast that features some of the top leaders in the beef industry co-hosted by Ron Lemenager, Extension beef specialist at Purdue University and BEEF Senior Editor Burt Rutherford.


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