Beef Cattle

Beef Cattle

Virginia’s strong beef industry includes more than 650,000 beef cows raised on more than 26,000 farms across all regions of the commonwealth. The state’s abundant forage resources and topography are ideally suited for beef production. Virginia is primarily a cow-calf state, with most calves sold as feeder cattle and transported to the Eastern Corn Belt or Midwest to be fed. The strong cow-calf sector is supported by a progressive seedstock industry. The stocker cattle industry is also significant in the state, taking advantage of the state’s pasture resources.  Extension programs serving the beef cattle industry address all of these segments.

2018 Hokie Harvest Sale

Friday, October 26, 2018
Virginia Tech Livestock Judging Pavilion

Online Internet bidding will be available on sale day.


Undergraduate students, both B.S. and Associates degree, in the Livestock Merchandising class manage the annual Hokie Harvest Sale. This event allows students to gain experience in organizing and conducting a livestock sale of university-owned beef cattle and horses.  Animal handling skills and sale management exercises are performed with both livestock species. Since the first sale in 1995, approximately 1,700 students have gained valuable merchandising experience working on all facets of the sale. Students in the Livestock Merchandising class hear from guest lecturers from the equine and cattle industries and get insight on their professional knowledge of merchandising and marketing, catalog production, presentation of sale animals, and the organization of auctions. Students must serve on one of the committees that are devoted to a specific aspect of the sale such as registration, advertising, catalog and social media, clerking, livestock photography, animal display, food and beverage, decorations, or sale ring.  

Proceeds from the sale are re-invested in departmental programs.  Over $2.8M have been generated from Hokie Harvest Sales in the 24-year history of this undergraduate course.