WASHINGTON, Oct. 11, 2017 - The U.S. beef industry continues to improve the quality of its management practices, according to the 2016 National Beef Quality Audit commissioned by the Beef Quality Assurance program. The National Dairy Farm Program shared the results of the audit at the recent World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wis., noting that dairy cows now represent 20 percent of the U.S. beef supply, a sharp increase from 5.5 percent in 2011. The audit shows that the cattle industry continues to make progress in reducing defects that negatively impact beef quality. For example, lameness in cull cattle has improved significantly: Today, 76 percent of cull cattle are identified as sound. Body condition scores of cull cattle have also improved: Only 9.3 percent of cattle were identified as “too thin,” compared to 22 percent in 2007. The audit also found that the industry can do a better job communicating beef’s benefits to consumers. “The research proved the cattle industry has a great story to tell, but also suggests we aren’t getting that story to as many people as we should,” said Josh White, executive director of producer education for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.