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Livestock Industry Opinions

by DTN
2017 February 10
Over the years, I’ve spun some wild market tales, including the forlorn bearish analyst of “The Longhorn” (2006), the downtrodden duo “Waiting for Godot” (2009), the motley party of card players in “Riverboat Gambler” (2012), and the doomed quartet headed to the gallows in the three-part “Grains on Death Row” series (2013), just to name a few.
by WLJ
2017 February 3
While I was in the United States Peace Corps, a stranger came to my small village in Kenya and stood on a box to gather villagers around him. He delivered a powerful and convincing story so that he could sell vials of water that he claimed would protect the people from the malaria that was ravaging the community.
2017 February 3
Unfortunately, even successful individuals and organizations have a natural tendency to fall into the trap of focusing on what has worked well in the past, what they feel comfortable doing, and what is politically correct or politically expedient. The result is that we often stifle our potential.
2017 February 3
Aside from demand for beef, there’s no more important issue for beef cattle producers than price discovery. One dictionary definition says price discovery is a method of determining the price for a specific commodity or security through basic supply and demand factors related to the market.


2017 February 3
One of those knobs that need adjusting is selling the calves, or searching for income. The adjustment is timing and how different markets react to different weights of cattle. Either way, as a producer shifts the calving date, he or she finds himself or herself in new, unfamiliar territory in regard to marketing.


2017 January 30
EPD averages for the growth traits were as follows: birth weight, minus 1 pound; weaning weight, 62 pounds; and yearling weight, 97 pounds. The EPD averages for carcass traits were as follows: marbling score, .46, and rib-eye area, .25 square inch. Step 1 complete.
by WLJ
2017 January 30
The western land-use events of the last few years seem to have been analyzed, pondered, condemned, praised and generally discussed into a state of confusion and stalemate. For 40 or so years I have been active in the advocacy for economic natural resource development, mining, timber, grazing and water.


by DTN
2017 January 30
When President Donald Trump aggressively launched his first full week on the job by withdrawing the country from the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a host of agricultural organizations—most of who had explicitly or implicitly embraced the crusade to “Make America Great Again”—almost fell over each other in defiance.


by WLJ
2017 January 20
My husband Russell and I own and operate a cow/calf operation in Louisiana. We are young producers who plan to be in the cattle business for some time. That’s why I was excited when I was selected last year to begin serving on the Cattlemen’s Beef Board (CBB).
by DTN
2017 January 20
“Son,” he painfully wheezed through multiple layers of market scar tissue, “don’t hold your breath waiting for equal pieces of pie in this biz. Regardless how big the pastry rolls out of the oven, we always run out of dessert way before we run out of waving forks.


2017 January 16
So let’s ponder this: “Can the beef industry produce terminal and replacement bulls?” Historically, the answer is “yes.” Through the decades, many breeding programs have been proposed to offer cattle producers the opportunity to implement cattlebreeding systems that involve terminal and replacement bulls.
by WLJ
2017 January 6
The calendar turned to 2017 with many resolutions made. What do you resolve for your operation this year? What plan have you and your team made to improve profits, expand or cut costs in 2017? In most cases each team member has ideas for the plan, but rarely does anyone put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard to capture these ideas.
2017 January 6
Were you happy with the calves? If the answer is yes, open the door to better understand the genetics that produced those calves, which is available by better understanding the sires of the calves. While the cows are important, today I want to focus on the sires.
by WLJ
2016 December 30
Political correctness has taught that words matter. Collaboration is defined as “the act of performing work or labor together; especially literary work or scientific research.” The problem is that BLM’s authorized officers will determine what is scientific instead of decisions based on cooperation.
2016 December 30
Hope springs eternal in a cattle person’s heart, so most producers are looking forward to 2017 being a better year than the one just passed. Early such signs came late last year for cattle feeders, as live cattle prices rallied strongly from their mid-October lows.
2016 December 23
Our lives are made up of moments and the many decisions they contain. Some math whiz figured we make 35,000 “decisions” daily, depending on the definition— that’s one every two seconds you’re awake. Every word you say (certainly every one you write) is a choice.
2016 December 23
The net result was a 10 percent increase in revenue for the smaller-framed cows, when compared with the larger-framed cows, based on steer calf performance. Although the smallerframed cows’ revenue per finished steer was lower, $821.81 versus largerframed cows at $895.
by WLJ
2016 December 16
These are on the negative side of what are called convenience traits and fortunately, we’ve had great progress in making today’s cows more functional. But you only need to take a short walk through a few feedlot pens to realize we still have work to do in improving cattle temperament.
2016 December 16
Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 1031 allows property owners to sell appreciated property and defer capital gains tax and depreciation recapture. Since 1921, the 1031 tax-deferred exchange has been a powerful financial tool for the agricultural producer.


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