Dr. Mike and Anne Wirtz, owners of TZ Cattle Co. in Brenham, Texas, were announced as this year’s recipients of the Texas Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) Award today at the 2012 Beef Cattle Short Course in College Station, Texas.
TZ Cattle Co. will compete against other state BQA winners for the National BQA Award, which will be announced at the 2013 Cattle Industry Annual Convention and Trade Show in Tampa, Fla.
“BQA guidelines are designed to ensure that consumers can feel confident that the beef they purchase at the grocery store was produced with the best possible care for the animal in mind,” said Joe Parker Jr., rancher and Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA) president. “Mike and Anne have taken this commitment to a whole new level, combining their scientific knowledge of the cattle industry with their common sense animal husbandry techniques to make sure cattle are raised under the best management and environmental practices possible.”
A longtime member of TSCRA, Wirtz has managed TZ Cattle Co. since 1973. He describes his operation as an integrated cow-calf operation with more than 300 head of cattle before the drought of 2010-2011. Currently the ranch is down to 100 head. Wirtz says that his goal is to recover from the drought, slowly increase the herd size, and increase overall carcass quality.
As a veterinarian and cow-calf producer, Wirtz has been on the forefront of the BQA program. Wirtz teaches his clients, associates and staff the importance of BQA and how to implement the practices within their own herds.
“Mike and Anne are an example to all cattle producers. They’ve used BQA best practices while providing leadership and BQA training for others; all with the goal of producing safe, wholesome and nutritious beef for consumers,” Parker continued.
TSCRA is a 135 year-old trade association and is the largest and oldest livestock organization based in Texas. TSCRA has more than 15,000 beef cattle operations, ranching families and businesses as members. These members represent approximately 50,000 individuals directly involved in ranching and beef production who manage 4 million head of cattle on 76 million acres of range and pasture land primarily in Texas and Oklahoma, but throughout the Southwest.