V8 Saw a Need for Brahman Performance Selection Tools
As forward-thinking seedstock breeders, V8 Ranch exists to serve our customers—whether they’re in the purebred or the commercial business. We believe in performance. We raise performance-oriented cattle, and we serve performance-oriented clients.
Compared to breeds like Angus or Hereford, the Brahman breed offers very little in terms of selection tools. When you consider EPDs individually—for instance, birthweight vs. fertility vs. carcass merit vs. performance—it can lead to single-trait selection and information overload for the buyer. We wanted a clearer, more intuitive experience for our clients.
So, in 2015, we began our quest to broaden the scope of available Brahman selection tools. First, we brought in three of the nation’s top animal breeding and genetics experts to lay the foundation of what needed to be included. Then, we went to our customers. We analyzed their production records, performance records, and marketing. In 2016, we personally funded the research of Dr. Michael MacNeill, one of the world’s leading experts in animal breeding, to put our idea into action. To us, our customers are worth the investment. This work resulted in the V8 Power Rating.
Introducing the V8 Power Rating
The V8 Power Rating is a single selection tool developed for our clients. It’s a simplified rating of economic value, completely customized to best serve producers using Brahman cattle. It uses actual customer data to model cattle production systems, thereby providing producers with improved service and greater insight into each selection’s possibilities. The V8 Power Rating is based on well-established scientific procedures that are guaranteed to help our clients maximize their genetic progress—and, in turn, their bottom line.
How to Use the V8 Power Rating
Essentially, you use the V8 Power Rating exactly as you would an EPD. It will be more useful than a regular EPD, though, because it factors in economic merit, seeing as how our ultimate goal at V8 is to help our clients make money. The V8 Power Rating is a scientific combination of birthweight, performance, maternal ability, fertility, disposition, carcass merit, and marketing option EPDs. It weights each factor according to its economic merit, and presents them to you, the buyer, as one easy-to-understand number.
The average Brahman, based on breed average EPDs, has a Power Rating of $0. The V8 Power Rating represents the additional dollars you can expect if you use V8 cattle in your herd. For example, say you have two bulls. One has an index of +$10 and the other has an index of +$30. You could expect your ranch to reap $20 more from each cow exposed to the second bull than you could from each cow exposed to the first.
The “Why” Behind the V8 Power Rating
The V8 Power Rating is revolutionary for the Brahman breed. No other Brahman ranch—not even the Brahman Breed Association—offers a tool of this caliber. Why did we do it?
Sure, we could have sat back and done nothing. We could have kept on going with the small set of tools available in our breed, even though breeds like Angus and Hereford have triple the amount of selection tools available. But that’s not how we operate at V8. We want more. We go the extra mile.
As a Brahman ranch ourselves, we know full well that buying Brahman cattle is a sound investment. But buying cattle can feel like a gamble, and we want our clients to have every confidence in their purchases. So, with great pride, we offer the V8 Power Rating to ensure our customers have the best selection tools possible at their disposal.