The programs and projects showcased by the ASA for the membership are innovative and creative, making the American Simmental Association the most progressive breed association in the US today. The association’s approach to research and education is second to none, given the successes of Cow Herd DNA Roundup, Carcass Merit Program, Carcass Expansion Project, Progress Through Performance, the new Learning Library, and more.
Another program offered which brings to bear great opportunities for breeders to educate their customers and promote this great breed of cattle is the ASA Educational Specialists Program, or as it is so fondly referred to around the country, “SimSpecialists.”
Your association encourages you to take the bull by the horns when developing customers for your herd or program, and these experts can help. Your association offers this positive imaging program nationwide, all year long, although most of the SimSpecialists days are used for production and bull sales in the spring months.
Our pool of SimSpecialists is steeped with talent. All are considered experts in beef cattle production in their given region of the country. Each one is familiar with programs and projects tackled by the ASA and can speak directly with the public on the benefits of Simmental cattle and the value of being an active ASA member.
So how can you arrange to have a SimSpecialist at your next Simmental event? It’s simple. Pending personnel availability, your operation must meet at least one of the qualifiers listed below in order to have ASA representation at your venue.
1. Audience Qualifier
Must have a minimum of 25 individuals in attendance; highlighting ASA program(s); event must align with ASA goals and programs; ASA personnel must be the focus for at least 30 minutes or 50% of the event.
2. $3,500 in Business with ASA
(within a fiscal year) per membership; must allow some form of education or program awareness.
3. $2,000 in Advertising with ASA Publication
Must be a singular membership/account or a collaborative sale; it must allow some form of education or program awareness.
4. $500 “Buy-a-Day”
Must allow some form of education or program awareness.
5. State Associations
SimSpecialist - Sales Season 2020
In the production sales and show/sale event that I attended in Nebraska before the coronavirus concerns, SimGenetics were very well received. The genetic data emphasis was obvious in the active bidding, with heterosis benefits to commercial herds being strongly touted. The crowds have included a balance of ranchers from different generations looking for Simmental or Sim-influenced bulls, allowing for nice ASA SimSpecialist interaction. At the show/sale combo, it was encouraging to have the judge point specifically to $Indexes and EPDs and talk about how they might help commercial cattlemen in various scenarios. It was also exciting to have a trio of different officials evaluate the multi-breed champion drive and select SimGenetics as Supremes in both bulls and females.
Since COVID-19 concerns have spread, the production sales thus far in Colorado that I’ve attended have drawn 50-60 in-person buyers. Phone and online bidding are both very brisk. The West is used to open spaces and bulls are displayed outdoors, so social distancing isn’t difficult to achieve, and hat-tips, elbow or fist bump greetings are the new norm. Concerned hosts, haunted by the pandemic’s potential impact and a scramble to adjust formatting, seem to actually be able to breathe easier since the interest and pricing of outstanding SimGenetics remains strong. The ASA’s “Stand Strong Simmental” theme is spot on.
State associations receive two free days per year for ASA attendance; must allow some form of education or program awareness; one of the two days must be a commercially-oriented event.