U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Date of this Version


Document Type



Published in Beef Research Program Progress Report (1988) No. 3: 3-4


Breed differences in performance characteristics are an important genetic resource for improving efficiency of beef production. Diverse breeds are required to exploit heterosis and complementarity through crossbreeding and to match genetic potential with diverse market requirements and climatic zone-feed resource situations.. Genetic variation among breeds can be used to provide an array of beef products that differ widely in fat and caloric content. Diverse feed resources will continue to be used for cow herds among and within different geographical regions of the U.S. Thus, it is important to characterize breeds of cattle representing different biological types for a wide spectrum of bioeconomic traits contributing to beef production. This report presents preliminary results from the first two of five calf crops to be produced in the fourth cycle of the Germ Plasm Evaluation Program (GPE) at U.S. Meat Animal Research Center.