Using Data to Improve Efficiency
Multi-generational family cattle business integrates new technology to improve communication and daily workflow
Technology plays a big role in Four Corners Farm in southwest Minnesota. It has changed their cattle business. Jill Weber VanDerWal and her husband are the fourth generation of the family farm in southwest Minnesota. Like many family farms, it is a multi-generational cattle and row crop business with their son and her parents actively involved.
A few years ago, they began to question the time and hassle involved with the handwritten notes they used for the feedlot. The paper records required entry time and slowed their ability to make decisions. With all the precision ag tools they were using on the row crop side they knew there had to be a better way for their cattle business.
Finding an Easier Way to Manage Data
VanDerWals found the Performance Beef platform via their daughter. She was attending graduate school at the University of Minnesota and used Performance Beef to feed cattle at the University feedlot. Their nutritionist had been using it with other customers and appreciated how easy it made making recommendations and seeing day-to-day performance. After discussing the value with their nutritionist, they were ready to get started.
Four Corners Farms was up and running with Performance Beef in three days. In his late 70s, even Jill’s dad enjoyed using the program to feed cattle. The easy-to-use platform introduced the simplicity they were looking for without changing their daily workflow.
Like every cattle operation, data was plentiful even before using Performance Beef. However, by streamlining the data capture and combining it with analytics, the VanDerWals are able to make better management decisions. Today they are digitally capturing every pound of feed and feedlot expense without the time of double entry, allowing them to make data-based decisions rather than enter data.
With cloud-based connectivity everyone at Four Corners has access to the same intelligence center to evaluate key nutrition, performance and financial metrics. Moving from handwritten notes to a real-time intelligence center within Performance Beef allows the entire team to work together to make better decisions.
Transforming the Livestock Industry
Since 2018, more than 1600 producers like the VanDerWals have simplified their business with Performance Beef. Providing real-time access to accurate nutrition, financial and performance information from anywhere enables better management and marketing decisions.
In 2020 the cloud-based platform is expanding to integrate health and individual animal management. The new features will help producers continue to simplify their business with automated data collection at the chute with easy-to-use processing and treatment protocols. The new features complement existing Performance Beef functionality by combining real-time performance with health data to save time and boost efficiency.
For more information or to request a free Performance Beef demo, visit performancelivestockanalytics.com.
Evan VanDerWal uses the Performance Beef scale app to accurately load the ration. As the fifth generation returning to the family farm, he helps with every aspect from crops to cattle.