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Beta-agonists for Market Steers


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General information about the use of Beta agonists in Show Steers. Use of Zilpaterol Hydrochloride and Optiflexx in Show Steers. FDA approval and where the use of these compounds currently stands.

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Beta-agonists for Market Steers

  1. 1. Beta-agonists for Market Steers
  2. 2. Purpose of the Presentation  Outline importance of understanding Beta-agonist use in youth market steer/heifer projects and the beef industry  Provide education regarding the background, research and proper administration of Beta-agonist feed ingredients in youth market steer/heifer projects  Offer considerations for communicating with the general public and various forms of media  Identify potential resources for educational and communication efforts
  3. 3. Importance of Education  Increased National discussion of Beta-agonist use in youth market steer/heifer projects and the beef industry  Beta-agonist feed ingredients are FDA approved for use in youth market steers/heifers. Exhibitors, parents, volunteers, County Extension Agents and Agriculture Science Teachers may have the opportunity to discuss Beta-agonist use with interested parties.  Educated clientele are more likely to identify and clarify misinformation regarding Beta-agonist use in market steer/heifer projects and the beef industry
  4. 4. Considerations and Initiatives for 2013-2014  AST’s/CEA’s, livestock project volunteers and exhibitors will be in public settings with livestock. The livestock show provide an excellent opportunity to engage the public regarding livestock production practices.  Uncertainty regarding short-term and long-term future of zilpaterol hydrochloride in market show animals. Will Zilmax® return to the market for the 2014 spring shows or in the future.  “Quality Counts” curriculum with supplemental pieces  3 Voice over PowerPoint presentations  Add 100 “growth enhancing technology” related verification questions by November 1, 2013(only applies to students due to take verification)  *note 100 questions added to question bank to be randomly drawn questions for verification exam.  Marketing show cattle at the county and state level. Livestock shows could possibly have to strategically market cattle potentially fed zilpaterol hydrochloride
  5. 5. Background of Beta-agonists in the U.S. - Approved by FDA - Available and used since 2003 in U.S. fed cattle - Optaflexx 2003 and Zilmax™ 2006 - Fed for 20-42 days (depending on additive) at the end of the finishing phase - Metabolized quickly - Increase beef production per animal by 15-30 pounds - In addition to the United States, beta-agonists are approved for use in Canada and two dozen other countries across the developed world.
  6. 6. Beta-agonists in the U.S.  The US beef industry has done a remarkable job of maintaining beef production even-though the beef cow inventory has been shrinking since the mid-70’s.  Beta-agonists have played a part in recent years. Machen, 2013
  7. 7. So why the attention now? It is not a food safety issue  According to the FDA, these compounds pose no threat to the safety of the food supply when properly used.  US beef remains a safe wholesome heart-healthy source of protein, B vitamins, zinc and iron.
  8. 8. So why the attention now?  Beta-agonists have been available and included in some finishing rations for beef cattle for over nine years.  Recently, isolated instances of lameness and mobility issues of finished cattle after arrival at a packing plant were alleged to be associated with the feeding of zilpaterol hydrochloride [one of two FDA-approved beta-agonists].  Several other factors could be associated with these observations of immobility: heat, genetics, feed regimen, feed ingredients, handling cattle in transport and in staging areas at processing plants. Machen, 2013
  9. 9. So why the attention now?  For now, the manufacturer of zilpaterol hydrochloride has voluntarily suspended distribution while the company and independent experts determine potential causes of lameness and other mobility issues that have been reported.  Beta-agonists are not growth hormones or antibiotics. When fed to beef cattle late in the finishing phase, they direct nutrients toward muscle at the expense of fat accumulation. Thus cattle can be efficiently fed 3-4 weeks longer and gain an additional 15-30 pounds of carcass weight… which translates into more retail beef yield. Machen, 2013
  10. 10. Read the label!!!  Any off label use of a feed additive is strictly prohibited by the FDA!!!  Even veterinarians can not prescribe off-label use  DAILY DOSAGE and length of feeding is critical *Feeding excessive (above label) is not only illegal but scientifically proven not to increase performance. Illegal, unethical, waste of money and a direct contradiction to the mission and objectives of 4-H/FFA *  Both products are labeled for use in market steers or market heifers.  Always read and follow the label!!!
  11. 11. Optaflexx™ – Ractopamine for Cattle (2003 FDAApproval)  A feed additive which accelerates muscle growth through increased feed efficiency (14%)  Fed during the last 28-42 days of the feeding period  Repartitions nutrients targeted for fat deposition to protein synthesis  Research indicate ½ square inch increase in Ribeye area and a slight increase in overall muscle conformation  Trials indicate that it does not affect fat thickness  No withdrawal period (consider stock rules regarding zero tolerance and completely out of animals system)
  12. 12.  Steers should be adequately finished (fat deposition and within 28-42 days of endpoint) prior to use  Steers that are borderline straight (post- legged) may become worse with the increased weight and muscle mass Optaflexx™ – Feeding Considerations
  13. 13. Zilmax™ (2006 FDAApproval)  Feed additive which redirects energy utilization in the body to cause an increase in the amount of muscle  Fed during the last 20-40 days on feed  3-day withdrawal period  Ribeye area increased by 1.25 in2 and an increase in overall muscle conformation  Research indicates a reduction in fat thickness, decrease marbling and reduction in tenderness
  14. 14.  Steers should be adequately finished (fat deposition and within 28-42 days of endpoint) prior to use  Steers that are borderline straight (post- legged) may become worse with the increased weight and muscle mass Zilmax™ – Feeding Considerations
  15. 15. Effect of Optaflexx™ and Zilmax™ on Feedlot Gain and Carcass Quality Optaflexx Zilmax Weight Gain 15 lbs 18 lbs Ribeye Area .5 in 1.25 in Fat Thickness None .1 in Quality Grade None 
  16. 16. Zilmax™ and Optaflexx™ are not labeled for use in cattle intended for breeding!! Therefore-it is illegal!!
  17. 17. Carefully evaluate each steer individually  Cattle that are average muscled and structurally sound make good candidates for implanting and/or feeding growth enhancing feed additives.  We must be proactive  Monitor market beef projects and educate
  18. 18. Still Sound
  19. 19. Too Straight?
  20. 20. Good Candidate?
  21. 21. Absolutely!
  22. 22. What about him?
  23. 23. Just Fine
  24. 24. Potential Risk?
  25. 25. Many of the calves not making the sale at major and county livestock shows also received implants, Zilmax™, and Optaflexx™! These products do not work miracles!
  26. 26. Zilmax™ and Optaflexx™ are labeled only for market steers and market heifers!
  27. 27. Take Home Points  According to the FDA, these compounds pose no threat to the safety of the food supply when properly used.  Both compounds have been made available to youth exhibitors in a form that allows for proper dosage and administration.  Part of the learning process for youth exhibitors involves the responsible administration of FDA-approved pharmaceuticals under the guidance of an instructor, veterinarian, or parent.  These products are used in a beef production setting and understanding new technology is an important part of the learning process  The proper care and welfare of animals are primary tenets of animal husbandry.
  28. 28. Take Home Points  The Quality Counts curriculum, developed by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension and the Texas Education Agency/VATAT, teaches students about animal care and the proper use of pharmaceuticals.  All 4-H and FFA students who exhibit at the major livestock shows in Texas are required to pass a Quality Counts verification examination prior to participation.
  29. 29. Communicating the Issue  Stick to the facts – Remain Unbiased  Focus on “Best Practices” or “Beef Quality Assurance” not individual products  Don’t Advocate Products but Educate how Growth Enhancing Technologies are used in the Beef Industry  Media Relations  Youth and Educators Speaking with Reporters  Misty Martin-Texas Beef Council  512-335-2333  *note resource intended for media training not positions on issues  Where to Refer Reporters  Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Beef or Livestock Specialists  University faculty with expertise in beef cattle  VATAT
  30. 30. Educational Methods  Showmanship and Feeding Clinics  Classroom  Communicating Growth Enhancing Technologies Document  Informational Letters  Email  Individual Contacts with Parents and Exhibitors
  31. 31. Considerations-Preparing for the Livestock Show  Know the Stock Show Rules – Zero Tolerance  Withdrawal time versus Elimination time  Best Practice to double withdrawal time  Market steers/heifers maintain gained performance due to Beta- agonist 10 days after last feeding with additive  Most major livestock shows reserve the right to test any market animal on the grounds at any time. Adjust withdrawal to arrival date.
  32. 32. Above All: • Promote Youth Development Through Livestock Projects • Your Experiences Matter. Tell Your Livestock Project Story
  33. 33. Available Resources  Quality Counts -  Texas Trails -  The Facts about Optaflexx™: Ractopamine for Cattle  optaflexx.pdf  The Facts about Zilmax™ for Market Show Steers and Market Show Heifers 
  34. 34. Contact People  Dr. Kevin Chilek, Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist, Quality Counts Coordinator. Email:  Dr. Jason Cleere, Beef Cattle Specialist, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension. Email:  Mr. Barney McClure, Executive Director, Vocational Agriculture Teachers Association of Texas. Email:  Mr. Kevin Swor, Ag Science Teacher, Diboll High School, 2013-2014 Animal Industries Committee Chair. Email:  Dr. Billy Zanolini, Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist, Youth Livestock and Agriculture. Email:  Mr. Stephen Zoeller, County Extension Agent, Kendall County, 2013-2014 Animal Industries Committee Chair Email:
  35. 35. Questions