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by WLJ
2005 January 14
Volatile wholesale beef prices last week were boosting the uncertainty about which meat and poultry cuts will capture the lead spots in grocers printed advertisements. Meat market analysts and retail sources predict that grocers will be conservative buyers overall and take a cautious approach through the balance of this month and into February, which historically has been a slower sales period due to consumers paying for holiday gifts purchased in December and facing higher heating bills. Beef Some major U.S. beef packers earlier this month announced temporary closures at a few processing plants and/or reduced operations at other facilities. The companies cited poor
by WLJ
2005 January 10
An independent survey of consumers in Japan has placed Aussie Beef at the top when it comes to brand recognition and food safety. The AC Nielsen report into the retail beef market in Japan included surveys of Japanese consumers and took into account brand awareness, consumption figures, consumer perceptions, and key purchasing drivers for both domestic and imported beef brands in Japan. Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) Japan regional manager Samantha Jamieson said the report confirms the solid standing that the Aussie Beef brand currently has in the Japanese market. “The Aussie Beef brand continues to be at the top of mind for
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Australia has suspended imports of beef from Brazil even after a suspected case of hoof-and-mouth disease (HMD) turned out to be a false alarm. The suspected case had been reported on a property in a state of the country that had been recognized as HMD free. Australia’s Minister for Agriculture Warren Truss said Australia has only ever imported a small sample of Brazilian beef for processing, but all import permits have now been canceled. “We do not import beef from Brazil in any quantities and so there's no likelihood of there being significant quantities coming into Australia," he said. “But any risk is too
by WLJ
2005 January 10
New boxed beef report unveiled USDA on Jan. 3 formally unveiled its new boxed beef report, which is a downsized and much simpler version of what it had been publishing twice daily for the past several years. The new report only lists the composite Choice and Select boxed beef cutouts, along with the Choice/Select spread. Previously the composite cutout was broke down into 600-750 and 750-900 pound weight categories under each quality grade. However, officials with USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service said the detail was unnecessary and complicating the reporting. U.S. cattle leave for Cuba A shipment of 22 beef cattle left the port
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Less than two days after the third case of BSE in a Canadian-origin cow was confirmed, U.S. Rep. Earl Pomeroy, D-ND, introduced legislation to delay the entry of Canadian cattle and beef. Last Tuesday, Jan. 4, Pomeroy introduced HR 187, which would delay the entry of live cattle or beef from “minimum BSE risk” countries until U.S. beef access to the top 10 pre-BSE export markets is similar to or exceeds pre-BSE levels. Specifically, Pomeroy said the bill aims, “To prohibit the operation during a calendar year of the final rule issued by the Secretary of Agriculture to establish standards for the
by WLJ
2005 January 10
After USDA announced its plans to reopen the border to Canadian live cattle beginning March 7, the agency’s chief economist Keith Collins predicted that as many as 2 million head of Canadian live slaughter and feeder cattle could cross the border in 2005. However, both U.S. and Canadian cattle market officials said last week that figure is probably very high, and that Canadian cattle entering the U.S. will hit a major lull through the summer months. Dennis Laycraft, executive director of the Canadian Cattlemen's Association, said it's doubtful that live cattle exports to the U.S. will reach half of Collins’ projection. “Considering
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Just about every group involved with the cattle and beef industry showed their true colors last week after USDA announced it will allow Canadian feeder cattle and fed cattle trade March 7 even after a new case of BSE was discovered north of the border. There is plenty of reason to be concerned about the cattle market but if you place a lot of faith in the futures markets you should already have an idea where things are headed. Forecasting the cattle markets is almost like forecasting the weather—50:50 at best. The communications departments at every group with an interest in the
by WLJ
2005 January 10
A federal lawsuit challenging Nebraska’s corporate farming ban was filed in the state last week, despite resilient public support to keep the ban in place. Crafted with the help of the Dean of the University of Nebraska law school, this law has been considered to be one of the toughest of its kind in the country. Nonetheless, State Sen. Jim Jones, joined by a number of other plaintiffs, have filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Omaha. The Nebraska Corporate Farming Ban, known as Initiative 300, or I-300, was a priority for Nebraska’s legislators last session, gaining attention from both
by WLJ
2005 January 10
— Packer losses, slow demand cited. It was a tenuous week in the fed cattle markets last week. Trade volume was light and $88-88.50 live, $140 dressed was all that cattle feeders could muster despite a winter storm that passed through most of the nation’s cattle feeding region. There were several elements at work last week—futures markets were softer with the Canadian trade news and announcements that most of the nation’s major packers were going to temporarily close some plants and reduce production shifts at others. Tyson was going to suspend operations in Denison, IA; Norfolk and West Point, NE; and Boise ID,
by WLJ
2005 January 10
— Congressional intervention, new legal challenge possible. The recent confirmation of the second case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Canada, and the third overall case of the disease in a Canadian-origin cow, is not expected to change USDA’s plans for allowing young Canadian live cattle and bone-in beef to reenter the U.S. beginning March 7. However, that could change, pending a new House proposal or a new lawsuit that could be filed by either a northern Plains based cattle organization or any of several consumer organizations. According to USDA officials, the newest case of the disease doesn’t change Canada’s “minimum BSE
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Kuwait became the first country among the four Arab Gulf Cooperation (GCC) countries that banned U.S. beef imports in late 2003, to lift the said ban on all beef imports originating from the U.S., with the exception of Washington state. The Kuwaiti decision on maintaining the import ban on Washington-state results from the country’s Food Safety Committee’s doubts on elimination of the BSE risk in the state. During 2003, Kuwait imported $32.2 millions worth of U.S. beef products, FOB basis. In 2004, between January and October, U.S. exports fell to $5.9 million. All of the 2004 trade was to the U.S.
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Frustrated by federal government inaction, an Arizona family said it will no longer pursue a swap of its historic ranch with the U.S. Forest Service and will investigate development instead. The Ruskin family had wished to do a land-for-land exchange of 35,000 acres of the famous Yavapai Ranch with the U.S. Forest Service (USFS), but feel they have exhausted every effort. Those efforts include more than five years of negotiations and a Yavapai Land Exchange bill passing both the House and the Senate only to die because of a lack of Congressional coordination. The Yavapai Ranch has been in the Ruskin family
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Some ranchers engage in two separate activities, such as the raising of cattle and the raising of horses--and account for these separately on their tax returns. For example, in Charles Givens v. Commissioner IRS, T.C. Memo 1989-529, the taxpayer considered his horse breeding and cattle raising activities as one business. He disclosed the combined losses from these activities on Schedule F for the years at issue. However, in his testimony in Tax Court he frequently described his activities as “two businesses,” and he maintained separate profit and loss records for each activity. The court concluded that he was engaged in two
by WLJ
2005 January 10
To the editor, On December 8th, the U.S. Supreme Court finally heard oral arguments on whether the Beef Checkoff is legitimate "government speech." The USDA side argued that the Checkoff is constitutional because federal bureaucrats approve Checkoff Beef Board member nominations and have the power to censor program content. Our side argued that the Checkoff structure amounts to both forced taxation and forced speech and association without the basic right to publicly elected representation. Constitutional law expert Laurence Tribe spoke on behalf of the livestock auctions (Livestock Marketing Association) and the Western Organization of Resource Councils (WORC) of which Northern Plains is
by WLJ
2005 January 10
South Korea said the discovery of a new case of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in Canada, the third known infection among North American cattle, may delay a resumption in beef imports from the country. South Korea earlier banned imports from Canada and the U.S. following BSE infections. South Korea consumed 443,000 tons of beef in 2004, the fourth largest in Asia after China, India and Japan, according to the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS). “We’ve been banning imports of Canadian beef since May 2003, and resuming imports from Canada may be delayed further,” said Kim Kyu, a veterinary officer at South Korea's
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Far West and northern tier bull producers appear bullish about the 2005 bull sale season as bull consignments for the annual Red Bluff Bull & Gelding Sale, Red Bluff, CA, are up from last year. Not only is herd rebuilding or expansion projected this year, but sale officials said higher-than-ever calf and yearling prices for 2004 could result in more bulls being demanded and/or more money being paid for herd bulls. This year’s event is scheduled for Jan. 25-29. Bull entries for 2005 total 437, up from the 375 head consigned last year. This year’s bull sale features bulls from 12
by WLJ
2005 January 10
The Russian government has experienced delays in issuing full implementing regulations for the 2005 poultry quota and beef and pork tariff rate quotas, according to a USDA trade attache report dated Dec. 30. Even if the necessary resolutions are passed before the New Year holidays, most Russian imports of U.S. poultry and pork will not resume until at least February 2005. “The Russian government has hindered access for the largest agricultural commodity imports for the second straight year by delaying the issuance of implementing regulations for the 2005 poultry quota and beef and pork tariff rate quotas (TRQ),” the report said. “The
by WLJ
2005 January 10
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) reinstated livestock producers’ rights to fully protect their animals against wolf depredation with the adoption of the “10j rule” on Jan. 3. The new rule will apply to Idaho populations, except those north of Interstate 90 in northern Idaho, and parts of Montana inhabited by the “nonessential experimental population.” No parts of Wyoming will be allowed to exercise the provision, since Wyoming’s wolf management plan has not been approved by FWS. Rule 10j says wolves on private property posing an “imminent threat” of attacking livestock, or livestock herding and guarding animals or dogs can
by WLJ
2005 January 10
The 60 day average weight was 968 lbs. with a progressively concentrated ration, currently maintained at 30 percent. Shipping fever was at a minimum this year, but some low level respiratory infection briefly resurfaced. The highlights of the 60 day progress report show the Black Angus led by test bull #116 with an ADG of 4.13 lbs. He is owned by Henson Cattle Co. of Enterprise, OR. Tied for second are bulls #108 and #119 with an ADG of 4.11 lbs. Bull #108 is a Jan. 22 calf sired by Hyline Travel Agent. He is owned by Ye Ole Bovie Ranch,
by WLJ
2005 January 10
Announcements of possible infections of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in the cattle herd has a great impact on the market because of consumer concerns of contracting the human form of the disease. But, what if researchers find a cure for this family of diseases? The impact on the market, and on producers, could be greatly lessened. Doctors and executives at St. Louis-based GenoMed decided to find a way to treat or prevent prion diseases, also known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs). To help with a project to test the patent-pending treatment, GenoMed enlisted the cooperation of British and Japanese experts. GenoMed CEO
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