Students from across the Southeast show off their cattle at the Battle of the Brands

Published: Aug. 21, 2022 at 4:28 PM EDT
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OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) - From elementary school to high school, each student across the states of Florida and Georgia showed off their prized cattle in the ring in front of judges at the Southeast Livestock Pavilion in Ocala.

“I grew up in Ocala with my dad raising horses and we moved over to show goats and sheep and then we moved over to cattle and have done all three species since,” said 8th grader Cayden Souza.

At The Battle of the Brands competition, there were more than 300 cattle spanning from Angus to Brahma.

The president of the Belleview Future Farmers of America Justin McClure said he used to show cattle when he was younger and now he gives back to the kids that are competing.

“I definitely grew up showing right here on these fairgrounds at the southeastern youth fair and other shows across the state of Florida and it’s a really great feeling to be able to come back and give back to these kids now and also help out at the same high school I went to as well.”

Suza said this has taught him about responsibility and accountability and his future goal is to stay in the agriculture business.

“I really do hope to own my own show heifer and steer operation and continue this legacy to the youth and continue youth and agriculture and agriculture across America and the world.”

The competition helped raise funds for scholarships for graduating seniors and to pay for local students to travel to other competitions throughout the year.

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