Beef Producers Could Have More Precise Way to Manage and Select Herds in the Future, Thanks to Collaboration Between Engineering, CAFNR
by Janese Heavin Beef producers in the future could have a more precise way to determine the productivity of their cattle, thanks to a collaboration between Mizzou Engineering and the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR). “The goal is to maximize intake versus the output such as meat production,” said Guilherme DeSouza . “From an engineering point of view, we want to optimize the process.” DeSouza is an associate professor of electrical engineering and computer science (EECS). He is working with Jared Decker , an associate professor for CAFNR. Decker recently received a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture for the work. The project aims to provide a better understanding of how a herd’s environment and management impact productivity, Decker said. Researchers will predict factors such as a cow’s size—surface area to volume ratio—skeletal structure, fat resources and hair coat using 3-D image data.