Factors affecting beef quality and the balancing act between offering consumer-friendly beef and running a profitable cattle operation are among the topics on tap for the 2011 Beef Quality Conference set for April 9 at the University of Arkansas Community College in Morrilton, Arkansas.

The conference, “Return on Investment from Pasture to Plate,” begins at 9:30 a.m. at UACCM’s Fine Arts Auditorium.

“Beef producers looking for insight into the changing needs of consumers and what factors producers need to be aware of in meeting those expectations are among the highlights of this conference,” said Shane Gadberry, associate professor-animal science, for the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture.

Invited speakers include: Bob Weaber, University of Missouri, discussing antagonisms between economically important traits and carcass quality; Dillon Feuz, Utah State University, talking about beef supply and tomorrow’s consumer; Travis Justice, executive director of the Arkansas Beef Council, and Tom Jones, Cattleman’s Beef Board, will provide updates on activities of the Arkansas Beef Council and National Beef Board.

Paul Beck and Tom Troxel of the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture’s Department of Animal Science, will discuss their research and Extension programs that focus on beef quality beginning at the ranch.

Jason Apple and Fred Pohlman, also of the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture, will discuss beef value enhancements beyond the feedyard.

The program is sponsored by the Arkansas Beef Council and there is no charge to attend. You may register before the event by contacting Sandy Allen at (501) 671-2177 or e-mail sallen@uaex.edu.

The community college is located off the I-40 Morrilton exit 108.  Follow Arkansas Route 9B south into Morrilton, turn right onto University Boulevard.  The campus entrance is at Central Drive.