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Chatel Beef- Post trip

After we had the opportunity to tour Chatel Beef, we had a better insight to the operation. The tour was given by the County Extension Agent, Aubrey Shirley and the General Manager, David McDonald. The Chatel Beef operation is a 1,300 acre farm with a supporting 1,400 acres to grow grain. Established in 2006, they have a 600 head field herd with 3 barns that feed out another 6,000 total. The beef is primarily angus with some waygu beef in the herd. The cattle in the barns are from the farm and local farmers. The national average for prime carcasses from a lot of cows is 10%, at Chatel 73% of the lot is labeled prime. The quality of meat can be attributed by the prolonged health care, high quality foods, and housing quality. The cows are given the proper medicines for a young age. The cattle stay in the barns for around 90 days, steers gaining 3lbs/day and heifers 2.8lbs/day. Gaining 500lbs before being sent to slaughter is fueled by rolled corn and sorghum silage feed, with each cow consuming and estimated 10.5% of their body weight daily. The cows are housed in 3 barns on a corn stalk and wheat straw bedding. The temperature in the barn is 20 degrees cooler than the outside even in the summer. The beef is then processed at FPL in Augusta, which is the processing facility owned by the owner of Chatel Beef.