Cattlemen discuss past and future of beef industry
Bill Couser, keynote speaker for the Washington County Cattlemen’s Association banquet, said that he was concerned when he attached his laptop computer to a projector and a photo of a cow in Cyclone apparel came on the screen.
Couser, the co-owner of Couser Cattle Company in Nevada, told the assembled cattlemen about his 5,000-acre spread and many of the changes that have occurred to the ranch in his lifetime “while keeping the same footprint.” Couser is the fourth generation of his family to farm the land. He is also a member of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association and has presented information on agriculture production to the attorney generals’ national convention. Cattlemen President Kurt Dallmeyer said that Couser had done many unique projects involving cattle production, which encouraged Dallmeyer to ask him to speak.
“I’ve never shared my picture this close to Iowa City,” Couser said, motioning to the bovine dressed in Iowa State garb. “A year ago Iowa State had a deal where you dressed your pet. We kept seeing dogs and cats. We borrowed some clothes to dress it and I’ll be darned if it didn’t win.”
About 50 people attended what was the first cattlemen’s banquet to be held during the winter. The banquet was held March 23 at the Washington Conservation Center in Marr Park.
For about 45 minutes, Couser showed videos of his spread, and spoke of several conservation projects he is spearheading at his company.
Couser said that he has realized in many areas around the country, beef producers have “skipped a generation.”
“All of a sudden we have a generation who doesn’t understand what we do for a living or where our food comes from,” he said. “It is very frustrating because we are just farmers. If you have one or 10,000, you are still a producer.”
Other special guests included Scott Heater, vice chair of the Iowa Beef Industry Council.