South Dakota Fed Cattle Challenge


Registration is CLOSED
Program Duration: October 1, 2023 - June 1, 2024

Event Location: Online (Custom feeding at Winner Circle Feedyard)

CONTACT: Roxanne Knock, Program Chair, at 605-354-4641 or [email protected]

Provide an opportunity for youth (SD highschool student not graduating before May 2024) to learn about the science and economics of finishing cattle by participating in a calf finishing program.

There are four parts to the program:
1. Understand the process for finishing cattle through ownership of cattle at a custom feedlot
2. Receive and review multiple topics through videos and short quizzes
3. Interpret a closeout
4. Presentation

Resident of South Dakota attending a SD highschool and not graduating before May 2024.

If you have previously participated in the Fed Cattle Challenge, and you’re still eligible based on age and residency, you’re welcome to participate again. Participants that have previously participated and received one of the top three awards are NOT eligible to receive one of the top placings again.

Purchasing Cattle:
Winner Circle Feedyard will purchase, house, feed and care for the participant's cattle throughout the program. Each participant will receive an invoice for approximately 30% of the purchase cost of a percentage of the pen roughly equal to 3 head.

Cattle Costs & Proceeds:
Winner Circle Feedyard will finance the remaining value of the cattle as well as the feed, yardage, hedging and veterinary/medical costs. Each billing period, the feedyard will be paying the costs until the cattle are sold.

*Proceeds from the cattle will be divided among the owners of the cattle and the number of cattle they own in this project, minus the divided costs. Carcass proceeds -- (calf purchase price + costs) = Participants revenue

Estimated costs include:
Estimate 30% equity of percentage of pen approximately equal to 3 head. For example, if purchased cattle are 800lb heifers at $2.53 = $2024/head. Purchase price total for 3 head = $6072. Equity down + $6072 x 0.30 = $1822. Required equity could be approximately $2000.

Participants will receive videos on 12 topics related to feeding cattle. The topics will cover a curriculum that will chronologically detail the process of starting and finishing cattle and will be developed by industry experts.

Participants will receive a close-out final report for the pen after the cattle are harvested. A quiz will be given to help assess understanding of the close-out.

After the project is complete and the cattle have been harvested, participants are asked to present to a panel of judges.

Awards for the top three participants will be awarded after presentations: 
First place $1,500
Second place $1,000
Third place $500

Time Requirement: 
Participants will receive curriculum in the form of 5-10 minute videos, with written supporting material on a bi-weekly basis. They're asked to watch the video, and take a short 5-10 question online quiz at their convenience. The presentation is the only time the participants are required to meet in-person.

After registration closes, Winner Circle Feedyard will purchase a pen of cattle for the program. We'd like to allow one month for the feedyard to purchase the pen and send invoices.


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