How significant is tenderness for consumer satisfaction? The short answer – it is crucial!  

Ranked by consumers as one of the most sought-after palatability components, market studies have shown that consumers were able to distinguish between varying levels of steak tenderness and are willing to pay substantially more for an increased amount of tenderness when palatability information was revealed (Lusk, ,2001).  With this in mind, tenderness proves to be a significant quality to consider when choosing sires for your herd.

None of the established breed association currently have an EPD for tenderness, but this attribute can be identified by testing the loin muscle of each carcass using the Warner-Bratzler shear force (WBSF) method.  Reviews of published literature on the genetic control of tenderness indicate that the heritability of WBSF along with marbling are both moderately high. In recent studies, it is suggested that selection for improved tenderness could result in significant genetic progress (Dikeman et al., 2000).  

As producers, we place a large amount of our concentration towards improving our programs parentage by refining phenotypic and genotypic traits.  Looking one step further, keeping the end product in mind is crucial. Have you ever heard the saying, “the consumer is king”? Here at Wilks Ranches, we are constantly working towards producing a superior product for our consumers, along with our fellow producers.  We are persistent about improving our own genetics and progeny grading scores by adding impeccable sires to our herd. One in particular that we are proud to highlight, is HA Cowboy Up 5405.

Wilks Ranch, along with Express Ranches and our associate owners, purchased this bull to add more body, power, and performance back into our program.  HA Cowboy Up 5405 has been noted as one of the best bulls in the business based on his leg and foot confirmation, and was the widest based, longest spined, and biggest bodied yearling to sell in America in 2016.  Not only is this bull exceptional phenotypically, but he also provides an extremely competitive carcass on the rail. Cowboy Up’s tenderness is unmatched, scoring 1 out of 100 for tenderness with the 50K DNA test.  These scores have ranked Cowboy Up in the top 1% of the breed for tenderness, which undeniably confirms why his progeny are selling themselves on the grid.

As forward-thinking producers, we believe that it is our duty to consistently improve our programs genetics by producing the highest quality progeny possible.  In turn, these improvements will implement a sustainable value to your herd by improving genetics that will result in increased production, higher quality performance, and overall improved customer satisfaction. As a top-quality Black Angus seedstock operation, we pride ourselves in providing traits that are beneficial to both our fellow ranchers and our consumers.  

If you are searching for more information on our ranches, herd sires, donor dams, or even our sale facility, you can find it at: