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Livestock Industry Opinions

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.
by WLJ
2016 December 16
I have been a dairy farmer in New York for more than 40 years. We milk about 75 Holsteins and plant about 275 acres of alfalfa, corn and oats. I know that many people will not automatically recognize a dairy operation as beef producers, but we certainly are part of this industry!.
by WLJ
2016 December 9
In a Nov. 28, 2016 article (“Will midnight regulations see more sunshine?” on the cover), the author gives a brief discussion of upcoming “rules” that Obama and company will impose on those of us who break some “law” every morning when our feet hit the floor.
by WLJ
2016 December 9
Weaned calves in the preconditioning or backgrounding pen should have come in with a plan. For those happy with weanling prices, calves in the pen may be limited to replacement heifer prospects. Others may see this as a year to retain ownership through finishing or you’re just waiting to sell calves in a new year.
2016 December 2
Now that Thanksgiving turkeys are out of the way, it’s time to fire up the grill again and enjoy a delicious steak. That’s what Americans have been doing all year and will continue to do well into next year.


by WLJ
2016 December 2
As calving season approaches, many ranchers look forward to the newborns that represent hours of studying sire summaries and bull catalogs. For all the optimism, however, there’s one source of lingering dread: the cow or cows that you know should have been culled due to attitude.


2016 December 2
Embedded in that question is the need to control costs. However, the fiscal focus points do change, depending on what phase of the beef system with which an individual is involved. These focus points are very evident when the differences between the acre-based cow/ calf producer are compared with the individual animal based point of harvest.


2016 November 25
As the beef industry looks forward and market prices continue to squeeze the cow/calf producer, the questions of cost control certainly surface. At the Dickinson Research Extension Center, the cost spread in the limited number of production systems the center can study is $300.
2016 November 25
“Suppose we could only make 1 million cars. If the auto industry was limited for some reason, what would they do? Would they make small, cheap vehicles or big, premium, expensive cars?” An industry observer asked that question at a cattle feeders’ meeting this summer.
by WLJ
2016 November 18
Foreign objects ingested by cattle make their way into the animal’s rumen and reticulum. Sometimes, the animal’s body will push the objects into the peritoneal cavity, causing severe inflammation (hardware disease). In extreme cases, a sharp, metal object can damage the animal’s abdomen wall and pierce the heart sac, causing pericarditis.
by WLJ
2016 November 18
ballot. The aim was to prevent special interest groups from only consulting the generally liberal, urban voters in metropolitan areas on issues that would impact the entire state. It additionally required such proposed amendments pass with a 55 percent majority rather than a simple majority.


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