Animal Industry Report

Extension Number

ASL R2406



Summary and Implications

As the Iowa beef industry invests in environmental management, there has been increasing interest in systems where runoff is minimized. A possible housing option used previously for pigs and sheep are hoop barns. The objective of this study was to compare steer performance and carcass characteristics between two housing treatments; hoop confinement barn (HP; n=3; 4.7m 2 /steer) vs. conventional feedlot (FD; n=3; 14.7m 2 /steer). A total of 240 crossbred Bos taurus steers were used. Steers were ear tagged, implanted, and weighed (445 ± 31.7 kg) on arrival and allotted to balance weight and breed. Performance measures; average daily gain (ADG), average daily feed intake (ADFI), and feed to gain ratio (F:G) were collected for the trial. Carcass characteristics; dressing percentage, hot carcass weight (HCW), fat depth over the 12 th rib, kidney pelvic and heart fat (KPH), ribeye area (REA), marbling score, quality grade, and USDA yield grade were collected at processing by the packing plant. No performance or carcass characteristics differed (P > 0.05) between housing treatments. Therefore, housing steers in a hoop barn does not result in detrimental alterations in either performance or carcass characteristics when compared to steers in a conventional feedlot.

Copyright Holder

Iowa State University