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Livestock Industry Opinions

2012 November 23
For many, the cows and calves head home, and then the calves are sorted for market. The busy-ness of it all is mind-boggling at times. The pens are stretched to the max, and there is not enough time to get every animal fed and watered on a normal schedule.
2012 November 16
The election is over, thank God! Each general election seems to be a more enduring process every time. Or perhaps I pay too much attention to them? But, Obama won another four years and, like it or not, we will have to adjust and learn to tolerate.
2012 November 16
I rode shotgun through a lot of drought-stricken pastures this summer and fall where producers weighed their options. Some folks had a few stores of hay saved up from good years. Some were going to cull a little deeper, while still others were making plans to rent some grass in the few places that were doing all right on moisture.
2012 November 16
However, perhaps some momentary thought should be given to managerial practices that have proven through the years to be sound practices. The problem is, when the obvious payment for calf processing disappears, then the logical conclusion is why even do it.
2012 November 9
Ever since the inception of income tax, all areas of farming have enjoyed generous tax benefits. Livestock owners are permitted to take depreciation deductions on their farm to offset gross income, as well as to deduct reasonable costs of operating a livestock breeding or activity from other income.
2012 November 9
Next year’s planning is under way. Everything is upbeat, and the cows and bulls even get a blue ribbon. Eighty-four percent of the cows are projected to calve in the first 21 days of the calving season next spring. This means that the cows cycled and the bulls got them bred.
2012 November 9
One of the emails on my computer Wednesday after the election read, “Obama wins, Financials Dive.” The DOW index dropped 303 points the day after the election. I took it as a confirmation that investors have little confidence in the president’s fiscal policies.
by WLJ
2012 November 2
This week, as the election draws to a close, we will find out who our national leader is going to be. The historical election on Nov. 6 will have a major impact on our domestic and global policies and economy. I cannot recall when an election has been so close, as many polls were claiming an even tie six days before Super Tuesday.
by WLJ
2012 November 2
With drought conditions forecasted to impact over 70 percent of cattle production across the nation, it is no surprise to New Mexico’s ranchers that the drought from last summer will be felt through the foreseeable future.
2012 November 2
Much has already been written about the impact of the 2010-2011 Texas/Oklahoma-based drought and this year’s most widespread drought in 59-plus years. Drought has forced cow/calf operators to cull cows, retain fewer heifers than expected, and thus reduce their herds for another year.
by WLJ
2012 November 2
First and foremost, follow vaccine guidelines as directed by product labels and your veterinarian. Vaccines should be stored in the refrigerator and placed on icepacks if being transported for longer than 20 minutes. Make sure to check the label for an expiration date, and do not use vaccines that have passed this time.
2012 October 26
Va l u ebased marketing of fed cattle is quickly becoming the norm, so genetically designing cattle that pay premiums on such a marketing system should be a consideration for cow/calf producers in order to add value to their calf crop.
2012 October 19
Snow is starting to fly and winter is just around the corner. By now, most of you all should have your winter feed secured so you can keep that valuable cow herd intact. It’s going to be tough if you haven’t got your plan figured out.
2012 October 19
“We spend about 7 percent of our disposable income to feed our families,” he said. “In Europe they spend anywhere from 13 percent to 28 percent of their income. What am I getting at? One, we take food for granted. Two, it’s cheap. And three, we always expect it to be there.
2012 October 19
We are halfway through the fall semester, so students are busy learning. The reality of skipping class or slacking off is starting to show up for some. For others, the self-fulfilling rewards of better understanding how the world works is becoming evident.
by WLJ
2012 October 12
Since the first of September, I’ve been to more than 30 auctions and the driving point at each of these has been clear: the homework must have been done! What I mean is that whoever is holding the sale must have marketed the event through advertising as well as personal contact to customers.
2012 October 12
For more than 20 years of the CHAPS program, producers have encountered many challenges in the beef business. If the word “optimistic” is correct, the most optimistic year resulted in replacing cattle at more than 21 percent of the herd, while more conservative times are reflected in a low replacement rate of just less than 15 percent.
2012 October 12
The calves weaned as heavy as last year despite the drought, and they stayed healthy in the lot. The cows bred back to where I had to sell more just for age to make room for better heifers coming in that would intensify the best of my cow families. It was good for cash flow and genetic improvement.
2012 October 5
In the latest Beef Quality Audit that the Beef Board and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) produced, they learned that we haven’t done a good job communicating beef production methods. The audit said we need to be more transparent to our customers so they have complete confidence in beef products.


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