College of Agriculture

Beef Unit

The CSU, Chico beef unit is used extensively in our academic curriculum and as an educational and business tool for industry cooperators. CSU, Chico’s student-run beef enterprise provides significant hands-on experience in animal science and beef cattle production. While the management team includes a staff technician and a faculty advisor, students are given primary responsibility for many of the day-to-day management decisions, and are actively involved in long term strategic planning.

The unit includes approximately 40 purebred Red Angus cows that calve in the fall and 40 purebred Angus cows that calve in the spring, a feeding facility for approximately 150 head, 100 acres of irrigated pasture located at the farm, as well as winter range located north of Chico. In addition, the beef unit relies on the USDA inspected meats lab located at the University Farm.

The beef program extensively utilizes artificial insemination and embryo transfer to speed the rate of genetic improvement. Students are exposed to the latest in cattle breeding, records utilization, pasture management, and new technology.

As a complement to the learning opportunities provided at the beef unit, many students are also actively involved in the Young Cattlemen’s Association. YCA takes bulls to sales, sponsors beef days and other educational events, and participates in statewide leadership programs. Visitors are always welcome at the beef unit, but to help ensure we maintain appropriate biosecurity, please be sure to check in at the farm office first.