cake mixes and pasta are made with plasma protein from cows and pet
foods are made tastier if they have beef bones and meat scraps in them.
there are leather products—everything from shoes to boots and belts.
Even furniture often is made from cowhide that is used for baseballs and
gloves that catch them.
is no admission charge to visit the $2 million facility and that’s
good news for school administrators worried about the cost of field
trips. Students from schools across the state are among the estimated
10,000 visitors each year.
into its second decade, the MOOseum—which opened in 1995—has a firm
hoof-hold on the public’s awareness and staff members are kept busy
arranging tours and answering questions for children and adult groups.
bottom line remains cattle, of course, with Vandiver and Wilson always
ready to answer questions about the third most important agricultural
entity in Alabama.
just behind broilers and forestry in cash receipts among the state’s
farm commodities, cattle producers sold more than $400 million worth of
cattle and calves in 2005.
from the Alabama Agricultural Statistics Service showed a decrease in
the number of cattle and calves on state farms. The total was 1.3
million head, down 40,000 from the previous year.
the lowest figure since 1950 and beef producers say another 500,000 head
can be supported in the state. Alabama ranked 9th nationally in the
number of farms with beef cows during 2003.
criticism by some animal rights groups, the demand for beef remains
high. Beef consumption has risen 25 percent since 1999, resulting in
strong feeder calf prices for producers.
beef products, which can be prepared in microwave ovens within a few
minutes, have met with approval from the American public from coast to
are 29 cuts of lean beef with a total fat content that falls between
skinless chicken breast and thighs when comparing cooked 3-ounce
inventory value of all cattle in Alabama increased $36 million last
year, reflecting higher cattle prices. The value per head was a record
$630—a 10 percent increase over 2004.
Cullman continues to be Alabama’s top cattle county with 68,000 head.
DeKalb County is second with 64,000 head, followed by Montgomery County
with 50,000, Marshall County with 43,000 and Lowndes with 37,000. Bibb
County is the smallest with 3,700 head.
Texas is the leading cattle producer with more than 13 million head.
Alabama is at the halfway mark, just below Wyoming and ahead of Ohio.
doesn’t take a backseat to any state when it comes to purebred
producers. All of the major breeds are represented including Angus,
Charolais and Simmental.
of the newest additions to the MOOseum is "Dusty," a Texas
Longhorn who is on loan, thanks to the generosity of Ned Ellis, owner of
Circle E Farms in Fort Deposit.
doesn’t move or do much more than stare at visitors, but he’s become
one of the most popular attractions at the facility. Ellis loved him and
didn’t want to part with him, so he had him stuffed after his demise.
horns measure six feet from tip to tip and children love to have their
picture taken with him.
that winter is waning, the Cattlemen’s Association is preparing for
the 49th annual Southeastern Livestock Exposition and Rodeo at Garrett
Coliseum in Montgomery.
popular event begins on Saturday, March 4 with the Adams Memorial Horse
Show. The remainder of the week is devoted to events ranging from
Ultrasound steer evaluations to the Sheep/Goat Scholars Bowl.
rodeo features top riders and ropers from throughout the country.
Performances will be held at 7:30 p.m. on March 9, 10 and 11th. Two
other performances will be held on March 11 at noon and 4 p.m.
Benn is a freelance writer from Selma.