AWA Friday Newsletter - May 21, 2021

AWA Friday Newsletter - May 21, 2021 To receive our weekly newsletter in your inbox, contact the AWA office and request to be added to our email list.

VOL 2, NO 21
Demand for premium quality beef, and specifically Wagyu beef, is an emerging market that continues to expand. Wagyu beef provides an extraordinary eating experience; tenderness, taste, and health benefits are superior to every other breed.  Additionally, the marbling qualities of Wagyu are exceptional and far exceed the current USDA Prime grade.

As the number of Wagyu increases in the U.S. demand for grading standards addressing this higher quality beef has expanded. Many members of the American Wagyu Association continue to face obstacles to experience the true value of their production because of limitations in current grading standards and facilities where access to USDA graders are limited.

Earlier this year the AWA engaged in discussions with the USDA regarding these issues. Following those discussions, the USDA has started addressing these concerns implementing new research efforts and ongoing discussions. Recently in cooperation with Colorado State University and others a study has been initiated and is off to a good start.  Dr. Brad Morgan, Animal Scientist at Colorado State University gives us an overview of the program. 
By Brad Morgan, Ph.D.

In a cooperative effort between the American Wagyu Association (AWA), USDA-AMS Grading Program, Brush Creek Ranch and Colorado State University (CSU) Animal Science, team members are utilizing modern grading technology as well as USDA graders in developing special marbling categories for Wagyu carcasses.  Carcasses from Brush Creek Ranch in Saratoga, WY are harvested weekly at the Global Food Innovation Center on the CSU campus on a weekly basis.  Following chilling, carcasses are graded using USDA graders as well as an E+V grading camera along with a Meat Image Japan (MIJ) grading camera.  These marbling estimates will be used to calibrate the equations used to estimate marbling.  According to CSU meat scientist Dr. Brad Morgan, “right now we are just simply at the top of the marbling chain in terms to what these cameras have been programmed to do.  This will allow special marbling categories with carcasses displaying more than U.S. Prime beef.  The overall goal of this project is for producers of extremely high marbling carcasses to be rewarded for their extremely high quality.”  Meat samples are also being obtained and fat percentages are being estimated. 

2021 AWA Annual General Membership Meeting and Conference

Be sure to mark your calendar for September 23-25, 2021 as results from this project and others will be presented at the AWA Annual AGM & Conference in Fort Collins, CO. Schedule, Registration, and Hotel information will be available in June.
Complete your Fall CAR Enrollments
Complete Your Enrollment Early and Save Money. For herds enrolled in the Complete Animal Recording Program (Standard Herds) there are two inventory periods, Spring and Fall calving herds.

Fall Herd enrollment will be active on May 1, 2021 and for those members who activate and enroll their cows by June 30, 2021 benefit with a $27 enrollment fee, a savings over previous years.
Fall Herd Enrollment Fee Schedule
•        $27 if enrolled before July 1
•        $33 if enrolled between July 1 and August 31
•        $36 if enrolled between August 1 and August 31
•        $39 if enrolled between September 1 and September 30
•        $42 if enrolled between October 1 and December 31
Invoices to be paid prior to the last day of the following month or fees
increase by $3 for each month past due.

Register Early and Save Money
For herds enrolled in the Verified Herd program and ET calves register those calves by 365 days of age and save on registration fees.
0 - 365 Days of Age or Less     $55
366 - 540 Days of Age             $60
541 - 720 Days of Age             $65
721 Days of Age and Older      $70

Steps to Submitting Performance Data - #3
Calf Reporting Through the CAR Management System. Go to Herd Mgmt: Inventory to bring up the Complete Animal Reporting Management System.

In addition to the Enrollment Tabs discussed last week, there are tabs labeled ‘Unfulfilled Data Requirements’, ‘5-year Female Reporting History’, and ‘Calf Crops’ that you can select from the right-hand side to help keep track of your reporting. (Click screenshot thumbnails to enlarge)

Unfulfilled Data Requirements – Selecting this tab will bring up a list of any enrolled dams that do not yet have a calf or non-calving reason reported for an assessed year.

5-year Female Reporting History – Track your breeding age females’ production history over the past 5 years. The birthdate of the calf recorded to the dam will display under the corresponding calving year, as well as the calving interval days since the birthdate of the prior year(s) recorded calf. If the dam has not had a calf or has not had a calf reported, it will list ‘NO CALF’. If your female did have a calf but ‘NO CALF’ is listed for that year, review the appropriate assessment year tab or the Unfulfilled Data Requirements tab to see if you have not yet selected the ‘Calf’ option for that dam, or if you have a birth recording table in progress that has not yet been completed.

Calf Crops – Review your Calf Crops by year. Select the year from the dropdown menu in the upper right-hand side of this menu. This will bring up a list of reported calves born that year and is another useful way to check if you have reported all calves for that year. The table will list the calves’ tattoos, registered or unregistered number, name, date of birth, date of weaning or yearling weights if reported, and current status (active, deceased, etc.).

Register Now for the 2021 Beef Improvement Federation Research Symposium and Convention
A friendly reminder to mark your calendar for the BIF Symposium. Registration is now open. You can register here,
For more conference details, including registration information, a complete schedule and hotel information, visit

Learn More About Expected Progeny Differences
Trait descriptions, how to read EPD, information on accuracy, percentile rank tables and guidelines for the publication of EPD are all available, simply follow this link.

AWA Adjustable Ball Caps Now Available
Whether you’re interested in something for yourself or a gift for your customers, we have several items to choose from including our new adjustable ball caps in three different colors for $20 each! With each purchase you are helping support your association and proudly support this great Wagyu breed.

Share a Favorite Photo
We make lots of memories with family, friends and Wagyu cattle! What activities have you been up to on the farm? Send us a picture and we will chose one to feature in an upcoming newsletter! Please include your name and membership number and mail to

Advertise with the AWA
The American Wagyu Association offers many ways members can advertise their genetics and products through AWA services. These include Face Book, Premium Advertising Page, eBlasts, Classifieds, the Annual Breeders Guide and other opportunities. Contact the AWA office for more information or visit

Download our advertising fee schedule

AWA Calendar
April 1, 2021 – Annual Membership Renewal – Late Fees Apply
May 1, 2021 – CAR Fall Enrollment Starts

June 30, 2021 – CAR Fall Enrollment Deadline – Fees Increase July 1
September 23 - 25, 2021 – Annual General Meeting and Conference, Fort Collins, CO


Upcoming Member Events
May 22, 2021 – Bar R Cattle Company Production Sale – Pullman, Washington
May 29, 2021 – – May Magic Event - Online Auction
June 4, 2021 – Midwest Wagyu Association Meeting, Salina, KS
June 5, 2021 – Passion For Prime – Salina, Kansas
August 21, 2021 - Elite Wagyu Sale - Salado, TX
Oct. 23, 2021 – Vermont Wagyu Production Sale – At the Farm in Springfield, VT

To post an upcoming event or to advertise your event with a live link, please contact the AWA Office.

Helpful Links
Stockmanship & Stewardship
Beef Quality Assurance
Beef Improvement Federation
Masters of Beef Advocacy

National Education Center for Agricultural Safety
Beef Cattle Community

Robert Williams, Ph.D.
Executive Director

Contact us at for any advertising inquires.
Visit us at for more information about the Wagyu breed.