In 2014, the beef cattle industry in Louisiana had 433,050 beef cows with a reported 7,379 producers. Gross farm value from beef cattle increased from $589.6 million in 2013 to $795.3 million in 2014 (La. Ag Summary), making it the second-largest animal food industry and ranking as one of the top five agricultural industries overall in the state.
The Louisiana Master Cattleman program began in 2004, and it includes 10 three-hour lectures on aspects of beef production. Classes are hosted around the state by local AgCenter extension agents, and interested producers should contact their local county agent.
The program is a commodity-specific program to enhance the profitability of beef producers by equipping them with important beef cattle best management practices. It also allows participants further integration into farm management/marketing components related to beef production. Upon completion of the Master Cattleman program, participants should be better able to increase farm profitability while being environmentally sustainable. Registration fees are charged for the class which generally cover teaching materials, meals, certificates, and a metal farm sign.
To become a certified Louisiana Master Cattleman, one must complete 30 hours of instruction which includes the national Beef Quality Assurance Certification. The 30 hours consists of 10 three-hour blocks of instruction on:
•Breeding & Selection
•Beef Quality Assurance
•Economics & Marketing