Michael J. Baker, Ph.D.

Beef Extension Specialist, Cornell University

Education

Year

Degree

Institution

2003

Ph.D.

Cornell University

1985

M.S.

West Virginia University

1980

B.S.

Juniata College

With 30 years of experience working at the county, regional and state level, Baker’s program has emphasized development and implementation of marketing programs for small farms typical of the Northeast. For 15 years, he directed and led the Cornell Value Discovery Program, a feedlot and carcass evaluation program of cattle consigned from different farms. In addition to traditional performance, carcass and economic analysis, feed efficiency for individual animals was predicted based on the Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System. Access to natural markets allowed for the evaluation of animal production and profitability of natural and conventional feeding and management regimens.

Over 2,250 head of cattle from five states were evaluated. Establishing a value-added market for finished cattle has also been a priority.  Use of niche markets, co-product feeds, grass finishing and locally available Holstein steers has been evaluated. Current work is focused on training extension educators to develop feeder calf pools that will optimize feeder calf value from small herds and in the use of the FINPACK software to assist producers in analyzing their business. Research over the last two years has focused on determining retail value of finished cattle. A model has been developed to predict retail value based on basic carcass measurements. Results are shared with producers to improve their management and genetic selection.With 30 years of experience working at the county, regional and state level, Baker’s program has emphasized development and implementation of marketing programs for small farms typical of the Northeast. For 15 years, he directed and led the Cornell Value Discovery Program, a feedlot and carcass evaluation program of cattle consigned from different farms. In addition to traditional performance, carcass and economic analysis, feed efficiency for individual animals was predicted based on the Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System. Access to natural markets allowed for the evaluation of animal production and profitability of natural and conventional feeding and management regimens.