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by WLJ
2008 August 15
Livestock producers are not directly regulated by the Country Of Original Labeling (COOL) interim final rule as livestock are not considered covered commodities. However, only producers have first-hand knowledge concerning the origin of their animals. Definitive origin information must be provided to slaughter facilities so that meat covered commodities can be accurately labeled at retail. Presumption of origin by packers and other entities in the marketing chain is not permitted. For example, it is not acceptable to assume that if an animal has no ear tag and/or brands identifying that the animal was born and/or raised in Canada or Mexico, the
by WLJ
2008 August 15
The corn market has been a difficult segment of agriculture to understand lately. The new dynamics that ethanol and the dramatic summer growing season have brought, along with the many new speculators in the market, have made corn extremely volatile this year. Mid-summer corn crop forecasts always create controversy and perhaps more so this year with USDA’s sometimes wacky ways of estimating crop progress. However, I dare you to go against their estimates; it just isn’t safe bet. Last week, National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) estimated that despite the 500-year flood that occurred in the Corn Belt, the corn crop yield
by WLJ
2008 August 15
4M ANGUS INAUGURAL SALE A first-time event in south-central Nebraska for 4M Angus, Brandon Meyer and family, plus a guest consignment from Galaxy Beef of Graham, MO, Steve Miller and family. A beautiful new sale facility and super hospitality greeted registered cattlemen from a wide area of the U.S. A great offering of Angus cattle featuring some of the breed’s leading cow families and prominent A.I. sires. A rapid-paced sale with strong, steady demand. TOPS: KMK Rita J352, 9/8/2000, daughter of GAR Precision 1680; to Blackstone Cattle Co., Mineral Point WI, 1/2 interest, $72,500. Three Trees Blackcap 3658, 9/9/03, daughter of
by WLJ
2008 August 15
On the road trip my daughter and I took while my son was at camp, I experienced some "lost and found" moments. Our time was spent getting lost and making discoveries. I intentionally picked rural routes to travel on in order to get acquainted with other farm and ranch communities in South Dakota. I also chose unpopular highways because interstate traffic crowds my space and stresses me out, and driving the same highway for every trip can get boring. Instead of seeing farm and ranch country at a rat-race pace, my daughter and I absorbed tiny towns by slowing down as we
by WLJ
2008 August 15
Following extensive interviews of producers in the worst of the flood-affected Corn Belt area, USDA said last week that corn production wasn’t significantly reduced. USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) forecast this year’s crop will reach 12.3 billion bushels, down 6 percent from last year but 17 percent above 2006. Based on conditions as of Aug. 1, the agency predicted yields would average 155 bushels per acre nationally, up 3.9 bushels from last year. If the average reaches that high, it would be the second highest yield on record, with only 2004 being a better year for U.S. growers. National
by WLJ
2008 August 15
USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) recently issued a one-page paper in response to livestock producer concerns about their requirements under the new Country Of Origin Labeling (COOL) law which is intended to clarify producer responsibilities under the newly issued set of rules. The notice reiterates the fact that livestock producers are not producers of a covered commodity, but as they are suppliers of a product which eventually is transformed into a covered commodity, certain record-keeping requirements are mandatory in the event USDA should seek to trace the origin of the meat that is produced from livestock. Slaughter/packing facilities are the first place in
by WLJ
2008 August 15
The White House last week said it would present new rules governing how the Endangered Species Act (ESA) regulations would be handled by federal agencies charged with approving and building projects like highways, dams, mines and other construction projects. Each agency will be responsible for determining whether or not it might harm endangered animals and plants. The new regulations, which don’t require the approval of Congress, would reduce the mandatory, independent reviews government scientists have been performing for 35 years, according to a draft of the regulations released last week by the Associated Press. Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne said last week that
by WLJ
2008 August 15
Manuel Henry Enos Manuel Henry Enos, 90, passed away in Roseburg, OR, on Aug. 6, 2008. Manuel was born in Livermore, CA, on Sept. 16, 1917, to Mary and Manuel Enos. Manuel’s parents died during The Great Influenza when Manuel was only 13 months old. Manuel’s grandparents, Lucy and Joe Cardoza, raised him along with their 10 children. Manuel always wanted to be a baseball pitcher, but instead dabbled in prize fighting, and at the age of 14 left home to join Jim Eskew’s Wild West Show in Waverly, NY. In 1939, Manuel joined the Cowboys Turtle Association, the forerunner of the
by WLJ
2008 August 15
Doug Stevenson, president of Basin Angus Ranch, announced last week the purchase of Stevenson Basin Bull Center, LLC near Hobson, MT. The Bull Development Center and Sale Facility, located on Highway 87 just east of Hobson, is a modern cattle handling and feeding facility and sale barn constructed in 2003 to develop the bulls and market the registered Angus seedstock raised by the Stevenson family ranches. Stevenson Basin Inc., the joint marketing agency for the Doug Stevenson, Clint Stevenson and Keith Stevenson families’ Angus genetics for over 24 years, is being dissolved. Basin Angus Ranch, the largest registered Angus operation in
by WLJ
2008 August 15
The tension surrounding the recall of ground beef products from Nebraska Beef Ltd. continues to grow, just as the recall itself widens in scope. An additional 1.2 million pounds of ground product were recalled recently, bringing the total over the past month to over 6 million pounds. As the recall grows to include more product delivered to more states, so do the allegations of illness related to consumption of the product, which has spawned two lawsuits in Georgia.Nebraska Beef has voluntarily recalled its product after discovering that it may be contaminated with E. coli bacteria. The bacteria in the Georgia
by WLJ
2008 August 15
New BSE detection method developed The protection of consumers against bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) starts in the slaughterhouse, and a new method of detecting the disease has been discovered. Scientists have detected infected nervous system tissue using a fluorescent light method. Nervous system tissue contains lipofuscin, which fluoresces when exposed to light. Formerly, the use of chromatography, polymerase chain-reaction assays and other laboratory methods for detecting nervous system tissue on an animal’s carcass was a tedious affair. The new simple test can quickly be performed in real time and minimize the chance of nervous system tissue becoming intermingled with the rest
by WLJ
2008 August 15
Fed cattle sales last week were being called $1-2 higher ahead of any significant trade volume at mid-day Thursday. Strong demand ahead of the Labor Day holiday, strong boxed beef prices, good export sales and tighter supplies ahead were all playing a role in boosting cash expectations among feedlot operators last week. The clearance levels of beef from packers and out of cold storage were good, with retailers taking deliveries of product for holiday sales and also booking advanced purchases of beef to lock in prices before they go up as we head into the fourth quarter. Trade was largely expected in
by WLJ
2008 August 8
Acceptance of product likely to increase demand quickly. After five years of waiting and patient negotiations, U.S. bone-in beef has returned to the market in South Korea. A 1.35 ton shipment of beef short ribs, chuck ribs, rib finger intercostal and flanks from Creekstone Farms Premium Beef arrived by air at Incheon Sirport west of Seoul early last Tuesday, according to South Korean beef importer Nerp Corp. and South Korean National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service quarantine officials. Sales of the beef will begin some time before mid-August at seven retail outlets in Seoul and Busan, along with Gyeonggi, South Chungcheong and
by WLJ
2008 August 8
Rodeos, Olympic equestrian sports, skateboarding, car racing, golf, tennis and other sports have several things in common: Winning in these sports can bring lucrative prizes, scholarships, and advertising endorsement contracts. Some children show great promise in sports, such as Tiger Woods did in golf. Parents understandably want to help develop the sporting skills of talented children. This means funding and managing their child’s aspiring career as an athlete in one field or another. Because so many youngsters are eager to compete for money in their favorite sport, parents often take on the role of manager of the activity. This involves funding
by WLJ
2008 August 8
It’s hard to know what to believe any more. Show me a study that reaches one conclusion, and I’ll come up with three more that find opposite results. That seems to be the way our society runs these days. There’s something for everyone, but there is no conclusive proof that we can all agree upon. It makes it hard to believe in anything, and solving problems is very difficult, to say the least. There were several prime examples last week that can and do impact the beef industry directly. Global warming, or the lack thereof, may be one of the most
by WLJ
2008 August 8
Coming Events Aug. 15 Aug. 27 Aug. 27 Sept. 17-19 Sept. 19 Oct. TBD Oct. 2 Oct. 7-9 Oct. 23-29 Nov. 2-4 Nov. 6-8 November 19-21 Dec. 3-4 Dec. 7-10 2009 Jan. 28-31 March 8-10 - Annual Meat Conference, Sheraton Denver Hotel, Denver, CO. - National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Annual Convention, Phoenix, AZ. For more information, call 303/694-0305. - Wyoming Stockgrower’s Association Joint Winter Convention, Parkway Plaza, Casper, WY. For more information, contact WYSGA at 307/638-3942 or email info@wysga.org. - Kansas Livestock Association Convention and Trade Show, Wichita, KS. For more information or to register, contact KLA at 785/273-5115. - California Cattlewomen’s/California Cattlemen’s Association Convention, John Ascuaga’s Nugget, Sparks, NV. For more information or to register, call
by WLJ
2008 August 8
Experts doubt meat/cancer link A panel of government, university and industry experts speaking at a leading food safety conference last week cast serious doubt on widely reported claims of a meat and cancer connection. David Klurfeld, Ph.D., national program leader in human nutrition at USDA, provided an extensive critique of the 2007 World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) report which made dramatic claims about a "convincing link" between red and processed meat and colorectal cancer. According to Klurfeld, the systematic literature review said that, "Overall, mechanisms explaining the data linking meat intake and colorectal cancer are far from plausible biological mechanisms." He
by WLJ
2008 August 8
A good jump in the futures trade lent some support to fed cattle markets last week and was expected to push cash prices higher. Although there was only minimal trade at mid-day last Thursday, analysts were calling the market $1-2 higher at $99-100 live and $158-160 dressed basis when trade finally got started, although the bulk of the action looked to be a Friday affair. Boxed beef prices also continued to support the live trade with Choice cutout values rising at midweek on fair movement in the retail trade and very good export shipments. South Korea has jumped into the market


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