Beef Welfare Symposium second session set to explore cow/calf management strategies and research from newborn care to holistic approaches in land management

The Sixth International Symposium on Beef Cattle Welfare second webinar session features experts discussing the latest in cow/calf production on March 23 at 2 p.m. E.T.

Beef Cow Calf Pair


  • Janice Swanson, Professor in the Department of Animal Science and Large Animal Clinical Sciences at Michigan State University
  • Daniel Thomson, Professor, Department of Animal Science Iowa State University

The Sixth International Symposium on Beef Cattle Welfare second webinar session features experts discussing the latest in cow/calf production on March 23 at 2 p.m. E.T. The symposium will occur monthly, on the fourth Wednesday, from February through June with presentations taking place from 2-4 p.m. E.T.

Attendees will hear from researchers and producers from across the United States as they discuss the latest research and best practices for cow/calf management particularly in young stock along with the latest in industry standards, while also exploring opportunities to improve land management through regenerative agricultural practices. 

“We are excited to take a closer look at cow/calf production from an efficiency, health, welfare and financial perspective.” said Daniel Thomson, DVM, Ph.D. with the Department of Animal Science at Iowa State University. “This session offers something for everyone from the producer and veterinarian to the researcher and industry representative as we explore novel concepts in cow/calf production.”

The second webinar on March. 23 features the following speakers:

  • Kip L. Lukasiewicz, DVM is the owner of Sandhills Cattle Consultants, Inc., and an equal partner with Production Animal Consultation, LLC, as well as Aerobos. Lukasiewicz will discuss their cow forward work that starts with changes in interaction from day one to weaning in cow/calf pairs that is resulting in reduced cull rates in cows, improved calf health and increased calf weaning weights.
  • Daniel Thomson, DVM, Ph.D., is an internationally known leader, researcher and instructor in animal health management, animal welfare and beef cattle production. He is currently a professor at Iowa State University and founded the Beef Cattle Institute in Kansas State’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Thomson will focus on the weaning stage of calf production, the latest immune system research and what steps producers can take to ensure a healthier calf at weaning and improved overall weight gain.
  • Kim Brackett co-owns and operates Brackett Ranches Limited Partnership with her husband, Ira. Brackett Ranches is a cow/calf and stocker operation based in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon. Kim has extensive experience in the cattle industry and will share the latest in Beef Quality Assurance feedyard assessments, calf care quality assurance and the research results that are being used to develop the cow/calf assessment.
  • Jason Rowntree is the newest C.S. Mott Professor for Sustainable Agriculture in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and serves in the Department of Animal Science at Michigan State University. Rowntree specializes in sustainable and regenerative agriculture with outcomes that include improving land quality, increasing productivity, and keeping water clean all while keeping the industry profitable. He will share the latest research and impact studies around whole herd management and provide strategies to improve utilization of marginal grounds, adjustments in stock base per acre, reduction in greenhouse gas emissions that all equate to improved animal welfare and financial gain.

“Our goal with these sessions is to not only provide new concepts and strategies for producers to implement to improve their operations but also to spur discussion and innovation among everyone, from academia to the industry, as a way to think differently about cattle welfare from the cow and calf to the land and environment,” said Dr. Janice Swanson, Department of Animal Science and Large Animal Clinical Sciences at Michigan State University. “We hope to expand the discussion and concepts in beef welfare to not just meet consumers growing expectations but exceed them in the future.”

In addition, the symposium is calling for student abstract (undergraduate, graduate and veterinary students) submission for poster presentations. Six student abstracts will be selected by the abstract review committee and invited to give oral presentations during the April 27, 2022, webinar. The call for abstracts is open for students until March 13.  Abstracts may be submitted by going to:

Throughout its five webinars, the symposium will bring together renowned beef experts to discuss their latest research findings and emerging animal welfare issues that face the beef cattle industry. The symposium features topics of interest for anyone connected to the beef industry from academia and government to beef producers and allied industries. Participants will be encouraged to ask questions and provide input to the conversation.

The webinar series is free, thanks to the generous grant support of the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Those interested in attending may register at

For more information about the program visit:

This article was published by Michigan State University Extension. For more information, visit To have a digest of information delivered straight to your email inbox, visit To contact an expert in your area, visit, or call 888-MSUE4MI (888-678-3464).



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