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Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Aug 1, 2005
Canadian calf program concluded The Feeder Calf Set-Aside Program in Canada ended late last month now that Canadian cattle are moving across the U.S. border. The Canadian Agriculture Ministry said that producers are free to market their calves as they see fit, and there are no slaughter restrictions. A notice to industry on July 15 also announced that auctions under the Fed Cattle Set-Aside Program were suspended. Cattle registered in the program will be released as scheduled, though producers who want to voluntarily withdraw some lots from the program before their scheduled release date may do so with preauthorization from their
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Aug 1, 2005
In a letter dated July 14, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) informed the Idaho State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) that the agency will be resuming federal compliance inspection and enforcement responsibilities for the state’s feedlots. The EPA is concerned that ISDA is not inspecting feedlots at a level conducive to ensuring producer compliance with federal laws. EPA is particularly focused on statutes regulating Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) under the Clean Water Act. ISDA, along with the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality, has been tasked with feedlot inspections since early 2001. In January of that year, the state signed an agreement
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Aug 1, 2005
— Beef demand still lagging. — Northern trade $2 softer. Early week thoughts of a steady fed cattle market last week went by the wayside come Wednesday afternoon as reports of another possible BSE case raced across the U.S. In addition, domestic market fundamentals, not Canadian cattle imports, were cited for some of the bearishness seen late in the week. As of midday Thursday, just a trickle of cattle had traded hands in Nebraska at mostly $122 dressed, $77 live. Those prices were mostly $2 softer than prices the week prior. Cattle feeders in Texas and Kansas were still holding out in an effort
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Aug 1, 2005
—Sample bound for England for confirmatory testing. — Sample first collected in April. USDA announced July 27 a non-definitive test result for a brain tissue sample tested at an Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) lab. The sample, which was tested at least three months after being collected, was sent to USDA by an independent veterinarian who had been called to a remote undisclosed farm in April 2005, to care for an animal experiencing calving difficulty. Little was known about the specifics of the case as of press time last Thursday, including the origin or type of animal involved. USDA officials confirmed that
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 25, 2005
China owns world’s largest cow herd China, having the largest beef cow herd in the world at 65 million head and growing, produces 12% of the world’s beef supply with 27% of the world’s beef cows, according to Cattle-Fax research. Brazil ranks second, producing 14% of the world’s beef supply from 47.5 million cows. The U.S. beef industry, third with 33 million beef cows, produces 23% of the world’s beef, and is identified as the world’s most productive. Argentina ranks fourth, the European Union fifth, and Australia sixth in the beef cow inventory category with 12.5 million cows. Mexico is seventh
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 25, 2005
— Canadian cattle, corn prices and ID top concerns. As summer continues its inexorable passage, cow/calf producers continue to be vexed by a number of questions about the market conditions they will face this fall. “Guys up here are concerned about a number of things including the reopening of the Canadian border, fluctuating corn prices and the status of the animal ID issue come fall,” said Steve Paisley, beef cattle extension specialist for the University of Wyoming. With good grazing conditions prevalent in a number of northern tier states, cattle producers are faced with a decision to either market calves early, taking advantage
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 25, 2005
There wasn’t a lot to talk about in the fed cattle markets last week as early week trade was at $79 live, $125 dressed, with very light volumes reported. Many cattle feeders were waiting packers out. Producers’ offers were mostly $83, against packer offers of $77. Southern plains feeders were inactive. The news about the Canadian border reopening was on everyone’s mind, particularly what impact it would have on the market. At this point, fed cattle are trading lower because of fundamental market conditions in the U.S., not because of pressure from Canadian cattle, analysts said. Boxed beef ranged lower, with Choice
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 25, 2005
— Proposal possible before end of summer. Ranchers in and around Yellowstone National Park and the Northwest could be allowed greater control over their predator problems if the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) moves ahead with plans to propose delisting the grizzly bear from the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Grizzly bears are thought to have originally numbered more than 100,000 in the continental U.S. When the grizzly was added to the endangered species list in 1975, the bears numbered fewer than 200 and appeared well on their way to extinction. Due to the conservation of grizzly habitat and protection of the
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 25, 2005
— Forage problems loom. With drought receding across much of the west, producers are being urged to start reviewing management strategies in an effort to minimize losses from problems not seen since the onset of the drought. It is also the time to take steps to plan for future low water years by preparing a drought management plan. When reviewing operating procedures, it is important to look at the big picture and make decisions that will place the ranch on a solid footing for future low water seasons, rangeland specialists said. Sources noted that building herd size slowly and maintaining proper stocking
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 25, 2005
Scientists may have found a literal “fountain of youth” which could result in older, proven cows regaining their younger production levels. Researchers at Advance Cell Technology, Worcester, MA, recently concluded a study in which 10- to 13-year-old cows were injected with cloned stem cells harvested from the livers of embryonic calves. The results of the study, published in the June 2005 issue of Cloning and Stem Cells, showed the treated animals reverted back to their younger form, particularly from a reproductive and mammary standpoint. In the study, scientists treated older cows with a small dose of embryonic stem cells, the equivalent of
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 18, 2005
After a couple weeks of steady prices, feedlots nationwide were starting to feel the pressure and traded cattle $1-2 lower than the prior week. Through last Thursday, northern Plains cattle feeders sold 55-60,000 head at mostly $127 dressed. Southern Plains and Southwest feedlots finally pulled the trigger Thursday afternoon at $80-80.50 live, compared to mostly $82 the previous week. Texas feeders sold 35-40,000 head, while Kansas trade totaled 45-50,000 cattle. Beef demand was significantly softer the week after the Fourth of July weekend, which was considered strong for beef sales. Retail sources were skeptical whether it would pick up until Labor Day
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 18, 2005
The U.S. House of Representatives last week maintained a delay in the implementation of mandatory country-of-origin labeling (mCOOL) for meat products. The provision barring USDA from spending any money to prepare for COOL’s implementation this September was included in an appropriations bill that the House voted in favor of 408-18. mCOOL, which is supported by several independent farming and consumer organizations but is opposed by most U.S. meat-industry trade associations, would require meat products sold at retail to indicate the origin of the meat contained in the products. Trade groups opposing the plan say COOL will cost the industry hundreds of
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 18, 2005
A proposed bill that would amend sections of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) is getting criticized by property rights organizations, including western ranching groups, and it hasn’t even been introduced in Congress yet. A leaked copy of Rep. Richard Pombo’s (R-CA) “Threatened and Endangered Species Recovery Act of 2005" showed the proposal includes two main items of concern for property owners. The first criticism is for language mandating a 50 percent compensation trigger. Under this change, landowners would have to prove that wildlife protection provided under the ESA has resulted in 50 percent or more of private land being removed from their
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 11, 2005
Last month’s release of the environmental impact statement (EIS) concerning new federal grazing rules was met with some harsh criticism from radical environmentalists and animal rights activists. However, officials with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) told WLJ that allegations of wrongdoing by them were “false and groundless.” Several activist groups claimed that BLM blatantly and illegally removed findings from the EIS that livestock grazing was indeed detrimental to federally-managed lands, specifically from a wildlife and riparian area standpoint. The groups said they were told by two scientists involved in the regulatory review process that their findings were disregarded and kept
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 11, 2005
— Senate passes trade pact. — House debate, vote around corner. The highly controversial Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) passed the full Senate July 1, and is now awaiting action from the House of Representatives later this month. The Senate vote was 54-45 in favor of opening free trade with six Central America countries—Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Proponents of CAFTA called the Senate action very positive, however, opponents of the proposal said that the vote shows that there are some concerns with the agreement. R-CALF United Stockgrowers of America, and several other producer organizations who oppose CAFTA
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 11, 2005
— Southwest conditions worsening. — Heifer prices could see jump. Meteorologists and climatologists are on the verge of declaring a majority of the western U.S. drought-free this summer. Sources said there are still some drought-like pockets in the extreme northern Plains, Northwest and parts of the Southwest, however, the Intermountain West, West Coast and central Plains are all in better shape than the previous four or five years. Cattle market analysts said continued improvement in weather and climate conditions could result in a much larger growth rate in the northern Plains and Intermountain cow herds, and a better calf and feeder cattle market
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jul 11, 2005
Reports of very good Fourth of July beef demand and some early week strength in both the futures and boxed beef markets gave fed cattle producers some optimism for a stronger market last week. However, as of Thursday, market activity was still almost nonexistent as packers were waiting for asking prices to get in line with the previous week’s market. The only trade reported as of press time was 5-8,000 head in Nebraska at $130 dressed, which was $1-2 stronger than two weeks ago. Thursday morning packer bids were down to $128-129 in northern feeding states. In the southern Plains, cattle feeders
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 27, 2005
South Dakota plant delayed Connecticut-based Ridgefield Farms will further delay breaking ground on a South Dakota beef processing facility until next spring. In addition, construction on a cattle slaughter facility has been pushed back another year, company officials said. In April, the company announced a six-month delay
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 27, 2005
Company expects fall introduction. Confirmatory A quick-test@ also unveiled. Canadian-based Vacci-Test Corporation recently announced it has developed a diagnostic blood test that shows the presence of brain diseases, including BSE, in live animals. Company officials said USDA researchers will conduct validation studies on their research starting next
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jun 27, 2005
Final results likely early this week. Testing disclosure scrutinized. Cattle industry and U.S. agriculture officials last week were both eagerly awaiting final results of confirmatory BSE testing being conducted by a world-renowned lab in Weybridge, England. However, as of press time last Thursday, those results were not


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