Angus Link, the new feeder cattle program from the American Angus Association, is officially live and open for enrollment. Backed by the world’s most comprehensive beef cattle genetic database through Angus Genetics, Inc. (AGI), the simple tool validates genetic performance potential of feeder cattle, which delivers value to segments across the supply chain.

Designed for the commercial sector, Angus Link has minimal requirements that must be met for calf crops to be eligible to enroll. At least 50 percent of the bulls used to sire the enrollment group must be registered Angus bulls, up to 50 percent of the bulls used to sire the enrollment group can be registered with other breed associations, and no more than 25 percent of the bulls used can be non-registered bulls. Producers enrolling their calves must also provide details about the genetic makeup of their cow herd. It can be as simple as a breed composition description, or they have the option to provide greater detail on the genetic merit of their cow herd by including historical bull use.

“Angus Link serves as a useful tool for commercial cow-calf producers to effectively communicate the genetic performance potential of their feeder calves to buyers across the nation,” said Chris Engel, director of Angus Link.

In addition, the program serves as a benchmark to measure and track genetic progress and help ensure the next calf crop is better than the last.

“Angus Link offers cattle feeders and buyers the ability to incorporate genetic merit into their buying decisions to help further manage risk and aid in making profits more predictable,” Engel said. “Whether they are paid on gain, grade or a combination of the two, Angus Link can be used to identify cattle that have the genetic ability to perform successfully in their system.”

Three scores will be given to each group of calves that are enrolled: beef score, feedlot performance score and grid score. The foundation of the scores are the Association’s dollar value indexes — $B (beef value), $F (feedlot value) and $G (grid value), respectively. The three Angus Link scores are presented on a scale of 0 to 200, with the industry average feeder calf scoring 100 for each of the three scores.

Pricing is $4.50 per head enrolled. As an incentive to encourage early enrollment in Angus Link, participants contributing to the first 50,000 head enrolled will have an introductory enrollment fee of $4 per head, and the 50 cent-per-head savings will be reciprocated for each of their sequential enrollment groups if they continue to enroll their calves into the program each year.

Special pricing is available for participants who elect to dual-enroll their calves or yearlings in Angus Link and AngusSource.

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