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Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 16, 2007
— Appeals court will consider merits of group’s attempt to stop Canadian imports. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals was to hear oral arguments last Friday in Portland, OR, in litigation against USDA’s decision two years ago to allow imports of Canadian cattle and beef under 30 months of age. The rule was initially published Jan. 5, 2005, and took effect two years ago. The suit is a continuation of R-CALF United Stockgrowers of America’s attempt to prevent USDA from allowing cattle that the group claims have a higher prevalence of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) from being brought into the
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 16, 2007
—Caution and vaccinations encouraged. Two Montana counties—Wheatland and Yellowstone—are now under a 60-day quarantine for rabies, the Montana Department of Livestock announced. The Wheatland County quarantine began on June 20 when a rabid dog was discovered and was renewed when a lamb was found to have rabies on June 26. The Yellowstone County quarantine began on June 27 because of a rabid dog. The quarantine status will remain in effect until the counties go for a full 60-day period without another positive finding for rabies, according to Dr. Jeanne Rankin, acting state veterinarian. Rankin explained that under Montana administrative rules, the quarantine status
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 16, 2007
With the debate over Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) as hot as ever, recent cries from consumers are signaling to some in the beef industry that the general public is indeed ready for COOL. While discussion continues within the industry over the enforcement of the law, some experts outside of agriculture are saying that consumers are demanding to know where their food comes from. Consumer organizations are claiming that the public is finally fed up with food safety concerns and that the time to implement change is sooner rather than later. Concerns over chemicals and allergens found in a wide range
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 16, 2007
Fires continued to burn in Utah last week during what looks to be the state’s worst fire year ever. Four different fires threatened rangeland and forests throughout the state, having consumed nearly 390,000 acres. The Milford Flat fire, centered around Beaver in south-central Utah, accounts for the vast majority of those acres with nearly 330,000 acres burned. Ranchers in nearly all of Utah were already reeling from a drought which has not only left them with limited grass reserves, but has also affected this year’s hay crop. Claims of hay trading at $150-180 per ton in areas of Utah are not
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Bad legislation This week is an important week for anyone selling feeder cattle or yearlings for fall delivery. Western Video Market and Superior Livestock are both having their largest video sales of the year. The two firms will offer roughly 500,000 head of cattle during the week. We will see all kinds of cattle from every geographic area of the country sell. This is truly a market making event that every cattlemen needs to pay attention to. It is also market competition at its best.   However, if some cattlemen’s groups have their way, an open market of this nature will change for
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Officials from Montana’s Board of Livestock said June 29 that initial testing points to elk as the source of infection in a brucellosis outbreak at a Bridger, MT, ranch this spring.   “Epidemiology is pointing toward interaction with elk (as the source),” Christian Mackay told the Environmental Quality Council, although he pointed out that the results were “not definitive at this point, and it may never be definitive.” A spokesman for USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) said he could not confirm the possibility, and said researchers were far from reaching any conclusions. “We are still investigating,” said Larry Cooper
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Higher gas prices, dry weather in parts of the U.S., strong consumer demand and higher feed prices are behind a 5 percent increase in Wisconsin retail food prices in the second quarter of the year, according to the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation’s Market Basket survey. The informal survey of stores in 26 communities shows the total cost of 20 basic grocery items in the second quarter of the year was $50.33, or $2.48 higher compared to the first quarter of 2007. Of the 20 items surveyed, all but two foods increased in average price compared to the first quarter of the
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
On June 28, the Senate cast a majority ‘no’ vote on advancing the discussion of an immigration bill which would provide a comprehensive reform of the nation’s immigration policy. The Senate failed to vote for the measure, casting 46 votes in favor compared to the 53 dissenting votes, the majority of which came from Republicans. President Bush considered the measure the capstone of his second term, one which could help expand the Republican base among Hispanic voters and provide a long-term solution to the problems the country faces in dealing with illegal immigration. Leaders among the Republican party in the Senate
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Japanese and U.S. officials met in Tokyo on June 27- 28 for two days of talks regarding Japan’s import restrictions on American beef. Japan only allows imports of U.S. beef from cattle 20 months of age or under, while U.S. data shows that beef from animals 30 months or younger is safe from harboring bovine spongiform encephalopathy. Washington’s calls on Tokyo to ease the restrictions were met during the recent meetings with requests from Japanese officials for more data to back up U.S. and World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) claims. Recently, OIE categorized the U.S. as a “controlled risk nation,”
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Packer struggle benefits producers Beef pro-cessors are still struggling to make much money and cattle producers are benefitting. While feeding margins are currently slim or have disappeared, that’s more a function of high feeding costs and what people paid for feeder cattle than the state of the live cattle market. Live cattle prices, notably on the southern Plains, are still higher than many analysts expected them to be at this time of year because of a manageable supply of market-ready cattle there and because packers are still competing strongly for that supply. Packers regard their recent margins as disappointing because May-June is
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Excessive business deductions by livestock and other farmers—or in other businesses’ activities—can be a “red flag” that triggers IRS audits. The IRS Restructuring Act of l998 shifted the “burden of proof” away from the taxpayer, so that the IRS has the burden of showing that your deductions are not “ordinary and reasonable.” At the same time, if you are audited in connection with a livestock or farming activity, the IRS takes the position that you have the burden of proof on the question of whether the activity is a business or a hobby unless you have two profit years in
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
Officials from the U.S. and South Korea signed a free-trade agreement (FTA) June 29 that reflected U.S. calls for stricter labor and environmental standards ahead of the expiration of President Bush’s expiring Trade Promotion Authority (TPA). The South Korean FTA deal still needs to be approved by lawmakers in both countries to take effect, a process that both sides acknowledged would be difficult.   South Korean Deputy Finance Minister Kim Sung-jin expressed optimism about the agreement last week, telling reporters, “The ratification process may not be smooth, but we expect to persuade the U.S. Congress.” However, already leaders in the U.S. House of
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
A survey of approximately 9,400 livestock producers conducted by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) in the states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin to determine whether they used ethanol co-products as a part of their feed rations in 2006, determined that approximately half of those questioned used some form of co-product in their livestock ration. Among dairy operations, 38 percent indicated that they fed co-products during 2006 and another 22 percent considered doing so. Among cattle on feed operations, 36 percent fed co-products and 34 percent more considered it.
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 9, 2007
The fever tick quarantine zone in Starr County, TX, has been expanded temporarily due to the threat of fever ticks beyond the permanent “quarantine zone” that runs along the Rio Grande. Effective July 3, livestock cannot be moved from the expanded preventive quarantine area until the animals are manually inspected for fever ticks, dipped and permitted for movement by personnel from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Fever Tick Force or the Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC). Fever ticks are capable of carrying and transmitting a protozoa—or tiny animal parasite—that causes the deadly livestock disease “Texas Fever.” The temporary preventive quarantined
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 20, 2007
6, 2005 Memorial day weekend was a big disappointment from a beef sales perspective, and the fallout pressured fed cattle prices downward $2-4. The boxed beef cutout was under serious pressure on the Friday prior to the popular grilling weekend, being down nearly $5 for that day. Following
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 20, 2007
6, 2005 The list of stakeholders invited to attend the U.S. Department of Agriculture's June 9 roundtable to discuss the safety of U.S. and Canadian beef and cattle in the debate over bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) is large enough to present a full agenda, said Jim Rogers, spokesman for USDA's
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 20, 2007
6, 2005 — Seasonal slaughter trends cited. BSE testing figures for last month were the smallest in seven months, with the number of weekly tests being about 25 percent below the previous few months. Officials with the stepped-up federal BSE surveillance program said the decline was simply a
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 20, 2007
6, 2005 — House report cites program shortfalls. Following on the heels of a Republican–authorized staff report stating that the Endangered Species Act (ESA) is not working, bills restructuring the law are expected to be introduced into the U.S. House and Senate this summer.
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 20, 2007
6, 2005 — Cow hay prices to soften. — Higher quality forage to remain high. Average to good quality “cow hay” is expected to be much more readily available later this year and a little cheaper to buy, compared to the previous couple of years, thanks to a
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 20, 2007
6, 2005 Dear Editor, In 1883 The National Cattle Growers Association was formed in Chicago. From that time on there has been an on going battle between cattleman, cattle feeders and meat packers. There always was a group whom I refer to as “that damn bunch” who


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