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🌎 Connecting the supply chain from byte to bite

Connecting the Supply Chain, Byte to Bite


As consumers become more interested about where the supply chain and where food has come from, it is important for food businesses to be able to prove what they suggest on their labelling and in their marketing messaging. This is not only for the benefit of the consumer but also for the farmers and ranchers involved in every step of the process.

During our webinar, Connecting the Supply Chain, Byte to Bite, we discuss how supply chains both in the UK and US are striving to become fully integrated and transparent and how technology like AgriWebb is an integral and essential part of that process.

Our panel of supply chain industry experts

Helen Brookes (Moderator) – Head of Business Development at the Centre for Innovation Excellence in Livestock (CIEL). Leads the Centre’s efforts to encourage collaboration within the network, support research opportunities, and promote new innovation to benefit the Livestock sector.

Liz Ford – Agricultural Projects Manager at ABP UK. Joined ABP in 2020 and manages all agricultural projects, particularly those run on ABP UK’s demonstration farm.

Laura Peyton – Senior Agricultural Manager at ABP UK. Worked for Genus and now manages the Sainsburys account for beef and lamb with a strong interest in using genetics to improve efficiencies within the meat supply chain.

Tim Goodnight – Vice President of Open Range Beef. Oversees the live cattle operations leveraging his deep knowledge of pasture-feeding cattle and innovative uses of technology to create USDA Organic, 100% grass-fed grass-finished beef.


What is Gamechanger?

Sainsbury’s is changing the way they buy and produce beef. With ABP, they have created an industry-leading integrated beef supply chain right through from the start with its genetics through to the consumer shelf. They have called it Gamechanger, because that’s what they believe it is and is part of their Taste the Difference range.

The UK beef suckler herd is in decline across the UK which is largely due to uncertainties around subsidies available in the UK and rising input costs. Gamechanger aims to take away some of these uncertainties by promising set prices for farmers regardless of fluctuating markets. Gamechanger works with over 300 dairy farmers that supply Holstein cross Aberdeen angus cows into their supply chain.

A big selling point is that they use the very best of Aberdeen angus genetics (in collaboration with Genus) whilst also promising a more transparent product produced with a lower carbon footprint.

Dairy calf suppliers

  • Guaranteed outlet for specification calves
  • Exclusive access to Aberdeen Angus genetics (easy calving, short gestation)
  • Semen at discounted rate
  • Fixed forward price is known at time of insemination
  • Calves collected at 10 days old
  • No market commission payments
  • Payments received within 7 days


  • Rearing until 12 weeks old (this system has been developed by consultant vets and ruminant nutritionists to ensure maximum calf growth rates)
  • Calves on Gamechanger rearer farms regularly achieve growth rates in excess of 1kg daily liveweight gain
  • Grown to a minimum of 100 kilogram live weight before being sent on to finishers
  • 24/7 managerial and technical support from Blade farming team
  • Vaccination protocols so that finishers receive calves that have had the best start in life
  • Free post-mortum in the case of any fatalities, so farmers can understand whether what impacted on that calf
  • Blade will pay any input costs including feed, vets and support. Rearer supplies the building, labour, straw, electricity and water
  • Feedback given after each “batch” of calves leave farm, expert support given to make improvements if necessary to ensure maximum chance of reward
  • Free livestock management software from AgriWebb that can be used for all your livestock


  • Stay on the finishing unit for anything up to a maximum of 24 months
  • Greatest benefit is that you know that you will be receiving a quality calf that has come from a Blade rearing unit
  • Data collected from the calves ensures that you have a strong calf, with full visibility of the growth performance of the calf through the AgriWebb software
  • There is no capital outlay and locked in lifetime price
  • Industry leading Aberdeen Angus genetics
  • High health status of animals
  • Monthly payment options depending on weight gained
  • Free farm management software from AgriWebb that can be used for all your livestock
  • 24/7 support

Open Range Beef


Open Range Beef is a Nebraska-born business that is predominantly organic and slaughters around 37-45,000 head of cattle per year. Their Spring Lake Ranch brand is currently a small programme aiming to produce around 5,000 head in 2024.  It’s a fully integrated supply chain which is a grass fed to grass finish programme incorporating cow-calf producers, yearling operators, and finishing operations.

Scaling supply in the organic sector can be challenging. Spring Lake Ranch are currently recruiting cow-calf producers for 2025 calving. However, for the calves to be deemed organic, the cow needs to be grazing organic ground from the 3rd trimester with the calf also fed organically produced feed. 

Within the supply chain they are leveraging AgriWebb to bring all their production groups together. Using the technology that AgriWebb provides allows Spring Lake Ranch suppliers to track their supply and give key metrics such as rate of gain, cost of gain, time to hit pasture, finish goals and carcass quality metrics. All partners in the supply chain have access to the data and receive feedback which aids in genetic selection and helps them to gauge their management decisions.

Open Range Beef don’t want to dictate what the farmers should do but provide help and advice so they can make any necessary changes.

Getting the message out to the consumer

Demonstration farm

On ABP’s demonstration farm the integrated supply chain is tested. Farmers can come and look at the Gamechanger cattle at any stage in the process. It allows them to visualise what is expected reassures them that the targets are achievable. The demonstration farm also showcases great examples of farming that can fit within consumer demand and not only ticks boxes for quality and sustainability but also for the wider health benefits too.

You can’t manage what you don’t measure, so data collection and analysis is vital to a success integrated supply chain. AgriWebb software is used to collate data which helps make decisions.

What are the benefits for producers and the rest of the supply chain?

How do you make sure the farmers and ranchers you’re working with have full visibility across the supply chain?

Laura (ABP/Gamechanger) was clear that the programme, now in its fifth year, is proving the benefits for farmers, processors, retailers and consumers. And now more than ever. In 2023, they launched the new Taste the Difference range in Sainsbury’s onto the shelves with labels reporting the 25% reduced carbon footprint of this programme. For Laura, this is not only great to meet consumer demands, but also is a source of pride for farmers, knowing that they have actively contributed to producing lower-carbon-based products and traceability is provided from the genetics to the supermarket shelf.

Tim (Open Range Beef or ORB) suggests that it is sharing success and feedback with customers and suppliers that is a real benefit. The ORB products are found in 60 retailers and also feature in a prominent Las Vegas restaurant. He also thinks that using AgriWebb is really helpful in order to show ranchers how they are performing for their own business. He thinks technology is key. Whether it is livestock management software, like AgriWebb or technology, such as camera grading carcasses, it all provides valuable feedback ensuring smart decisions on genetic traits.

How can the supply chain a friendly place to be for the producer?

Gamechanger provides 24/7 support and invites farmers to visit the main demonstration farm. Likewise, Open Range Beef regularly invites producers to their ranch and holds workshops on site. This gives not only helps with knowledge exchange, but also a sense of community. Gamechanger farmers are kept up to date with newsletters throughout the year, as well as community events run by ABP/Blade Farming or AgriWebb. Moreover, being able to track progress through AgriWebb software enables a complete understanding of where the whole of their livestock operation can benefit from increased productivity, not just the stock for the Gamechanger scheme.

How is data and other technology supporting the work and goals of ABP and Gamechanger?

Having good data is integral to monitoring performance. That isn’t to say schemes like this are they to monitor farmers. Rather, the data farmers submit provides evidence along the supply chain to make defensible and credible claims around cooking and eating consistency as well as claims around environmental credentials. Being able to prove antibiotic usage is also becoming increasingly important. It means the Gamechanger team can also work to help farmers improve feed efficiency or, as in the case of rearers, colostrum management. Finishers can be clear when an animal isn’t performing and then see if the interventions they take, are getting the animal back on track towards the target weight by age. It really is a win-win for everyone in the supply chain.

Interested in knowing more about being a farmer / rancher for Open Range Beef or Gamechanger?

Follow these links for more information and to get in touch.

Open Range Beef – email:

Gamechanger – website:

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