The Californian rancher who claims to have successfully crossbred buffalos with Charolais and Hereford cattle, still refuses to allow scientific tests to be conducted on the new animals.
GV Pens in ranch at Tracy, California
GV & SV "Beefalo" promotion stall with people gathered round watching slides and taking leaflets (4 shots)
GV & CU Beefalo bull in pen with people looking on (7 shots)
GTV Beefalo bull in ring - named Goliath - one of the first successful crossbreeds (2 shots)
GV & CU Rancher Basolo speaking on intercom while driving car and arriving at ranch (7 shots)
SV Basolo driving through herd (2 shots)
CU & SV Cattle (4 shots)
SV Cowboys rounding up herd into pens (4 shots)
SV & CU People being served beefalo (2 shots)
CU Basolo speaking to camera & showing picture of starving African child
SOF IN: "Like ...
SOF OUT: ... throw it away."(11 shots)
DOBYNS: Rancher D. C. Basolo of Tracy, California, successfully crossbred buffalo and cattle. It took seventeen years. Now Beefalo is in the promotion stage with all that means. This is a Beefalo bull - a mixture of buffalo and two breeds of cattle - Charolais and Hereford. A Canadian paid two-and-a-half million dollars for this bull, the highest price ever paid for a breeding bull. But Beefalo could be the low-cost meat of the future. That's Goliath - three thousand, eight hundred pounds of bull, half buffalo and half Holstein cow. He was one of the first successes in the programme to build the Beefalo. He's now nine years old, still being used in the programme, and still frisking around - half buffalo and half cow. What Bud Basolo was able to do was far more exotic than it sounds. He crossed two different species and got a fertile result, capable of reproducing. If you think that's easy, remember that if you breed a horse and a donkey you get a mule - but a mule cannot reproduce. If you want another mule, you must breed another horse and another donkey. The Beefalo can reproduce, but Basolo has never allowed any scientific testing and that has made people suspicious. But without testing, there is no proof that the Beefalo is what Basolo says it is, and he says a lot. That the Beefalo gains weight faster so it can be marketed sooner; that it gains weight without a lot of expensive grain; it's hardier and easier to raise; that its meat is leaner but richer in protein, and just as tender.
(DOBYNS): There are about one hundred and sixty thousand Beefalo now - most of them in north and south America. They work almost exactly like cows. For instance in this round-up, the cows are cows but the calves are Beefalo. Every Monday at the Basolo ranch there is a Beefalo lunch. Family, friends, ranch-hands, prospective customers and visiting reporters, get to sample it.
BASOLO: Like, I always keep on my desk this little picture here, from this magazine, and you know, I can't help but it reminds me every day that I must be doing something good because someday this child will have some feed grain to eat, which will do a lot more good for him than if all us Americans put all that grain into an animal's mouth and then trim the fat off and throw it away.
Initials CL/1612 CL/1640
This film is serviced with a sound commentary by NBC reporter, Lloyd Dobyns, and an interview with Mr. Basolo. A transcript of both is provided on page two.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Californian rancher who claims to have successfully crossbred buffalos with Charolais and Hereford cattle, still refuses to allow scientific tests to be conducted on the new animals. Though this refusal has given rise to a certain amount of scepticism about his claims in professional circles, the number of "Beefalos" now in existence continues to grow.
The rancher, D.C. "Bud" Basolo, began experimenting with cross-breeding buffalo and cattle seventeen years ago. His programme has now reached the "promotional" stage, and recently a Canadian paid two-and-a-half million dollars (???1.25 Million sterling) for a Beefalo bull. It was the highest price ever paid for a breeding bull.
Basolo believes his new breed could provide the low-cost meat of the future. He says that the Beefalo gains weight faster and can therefore be marketed sooner. The animal is hardier and easier to raise, and produces meat that is leaner and richer in protein than that of conventional cattle.
If scientifically confirmed, his achievement is considerable. It is remarkable to cross two different breeds and end up with an animal that is fertile and capable of reproducing. Mules, for instance, are the result of cross-breeding a horse with a donkey. But mules do not reproduce other mules.
Basolo claims that his Beefalos do reproduce, and he can point to the fact that there are now about 160,000 of them in north and south America.