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Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 15, 2007
Congress vows action to end export of horses as part of HSUS campaign. State laws passed in Texas and Illinois have effectively ended the slaughter of horses in the U.S., although the DeKalb, IL-based Cavel International plant operators may still have the opportunity to appeal. It was unclear last week whether an appeal to the U.S.  Supreme Court would proceed. However, that hasn’t ended the slaughter of horses. As anticipated prior to the de facto ban, the number of horses being sent to Mexico and Canada for slaughter has jumped significantly since last year. Canada, too, has stepped in to fill the
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 15, 2007
South Korean officials recently halted quarantine inspections of U.S. beef imports and again asked the U.S. government to immediately stop any shipments. The report marks another violation in a series of seesaw beef trade negotiations between the U.S. and South Korea. Korea, which does not accept beef with bones or beef from cattle aged over 30 months, has repeatedly discovered shipments containing materials in violation of the current trade standards. On Oct. 5, Korean inspectors found vertebral bone pieces in a 30.3 kilogram box contained in an 18.5 metric ton shipment of U.S. beef. According to a Meat and Livestock Australia
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 15, 2007
Grazing corn residues is one way to reduce the cost of wintering beef cows in the upper Midwest, a North Dakota State University (NDSU) cattle expert says. “With the increase in corn acres in North Dakota and the surrounding region this year, availability of corn residue also has increased, making this practice even more attractive,” says Greg Lardy, NDSU Extension beef cattle specialist. Corn residue left behind after harvest includes the stalk, leaf, husk and cob, as well as downed ears. The amount of downed ears varies with the corn variety, but it can be as much as three to five bushels
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 15, 2007
As the cattle industry changes, so too must the organizations that represent livestock owners and producers. Production costs and challenges continue to mount and ranchers need all the help they can get on their own operations, let alone having to constantly fret what affects them from the outside. Most ranchers, along with a large part of the general populace, dislike national politics because they feel too far removed from the process to have any impact. In many cases, livestock producers become disenfranchised with the policy process because they feel their voice is not heard. In April of 2007, a new livestock
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 15, 2007
Many producers in the southern Plains rely heavily on grazing wheat pasture in the winter as an integral part of their annual production strategies and an important part of their yearly income. Farmers who also own cattle can usually take advantage of the cheap cost of gain using stocker cattle, with relatively little impact to the gross profit margins of their wheat. Farmers with no cattle will still normally offer their wheat pasture to cattlemen who need a forage resource in the winter, but don’t want to put up with the high cost of hay. This year, however, wheat prices are
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
—Demand for Certified Hereford Beef growing 25 percent annually. The American Hereford Association (AHA) hosted its first-ever media fly-in event at its headquarters in Kansas City, MO, on Sept. 24-25. Members of various top-tier beef industry publications were on hand to hear about AHA’s objectives, news updates, and progress. David Mehlhaff, AHA’s newly appointed director of communications, spearheaded organization of the event and ensured that prominent AHA members and staff were on hand to help give media representatives the proper insight into AHA’s exciting initiatives. “Our first priority with this event was making sure that we are able to let producers and
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
—Packers are losing money with cutout stalled below $148. Fed cattle trade was extremely slow last week. Packers were offering $92 and feeders were looking for $96. Futures markets started the week with a roar after a bullish cattle on feed report, but slowly declined by mid-week with the October contract at $96.95. The general tone of the fed cattle markets was that prices would be higher and it was apparent trade would take place Friday. There were roughly 2,500 head traded in the southern Plains early in the week at $95.50, JBS Swift was the buyer. Last Thursday morning,
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
Colorado State University (CSU) Extension recently issued new rules regarding the implementation of premise ID for 4-H participants. The new rules are the result of a year’s worth of public comment on the issue, which appeared to CSU officials to be mostly negative. Some producers have indicated that CSU’s change may also be a result of a recent incident at the 2007 Colorado State Fair in Pueblo in which 4-H’ers participating in the livestock show were required to register their premise under the National Animal Identification System (NAIS). The requirement implemented at the 2007 State Fair was decided by the Colorado
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
Race for the case There is a lot to be thankful for in the cattle markets. Calves are selling well, yearling cattle are selling extremely well, and fed cattle have found a solid home in the $90s, although profits at the cattle feeding level are slim to none. It seems like a time to be content with the cattle business. The supply of fed cattle is tight, the supply of suitable feeder cattle is tighter, and it all looks good for the foreseeable future. There are, however, several items developing that could throw a few bumps in the road for beef
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
Beef goes even more global The beef industry just keeps on getting more global. Consider these recent developments. Brazil’s largest beef packer acquires the third largest packer in the U.S. and the largest in Australia to become the largest beef processor in the world. It starts selling Australian beef to Brazil. Meanwhile, Cargill, the world’s second largest processor, starts selling Australian grain-fed beef in the U.S. As startling as these moves might appear, there’s nothing new about the global nature of the meat business. The only difference between now and 100 years ago is that in the early 1900s, the global
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
— Cattle on feed numbers total 10.3 million head, down 6 percent from 2006. — Placements drop 7.5 percent. — Marketings, even with last year, remain a blemish in an otherwise bullish report. The Sept. 1 cattle on feed report contained more good news for cattle feeders and cow/calf producers. On feed and placement numbers were inline with analyst’s pre-report expectations. As expected, it was the third consecutive month showing lighter placements and tighter fed cattle supplies ahead, paving the way for strong markets well into next year. The number of cattle on feed totaled 10.3 million head on Sept. 1, 2007. The
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
—Committee forced to cut more than $1.8 million in proposals. The Beef Promotion Operating Committee last week funded a total of 42 program proposals with beef checkoff dollars for Fiscal 2008. At the same time, however, a tight budget forced the committee to reject more than $1.8 million in proposals to stay within the Cattlemen’s Beef Board’s (CBB’s) $46.8 million national program budget for the coming year. “This was one of the most difficult Operating Committee meetings I’ve been through during all the years I’ve served on it because of all the tough choices we had to make,” said CBB Chairman Ken
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
Regenerate the land with the tool of grazing How do you regenerate land? Answer, use your grazing animals. If done right, they will add “pizzazz” energy and vigor back into your soils. The word pizzazz means dazzling; flamboyance; flair; vigorous spirit; energy and excitement. Nice goal, and profitable. Grazing by livestock can be viewed as a tool that either builds lands up (regenerates them) or tears them down (degrades them). Grazing thought of as a tool becomes similar to a carpenter’s hammer, which can be used to build things up or tear them down. It’s all in the hands of the
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
—Beef seedstock exports are an important target for producers in border states. USDA’s recent move toward trade rationalization is likely to be a step in the right direction toward opening live cattle trade with Mexico, the current largest importer of U.S. beef. USDA officials said last week the agency is pressuring Mexican officials to begin allowing beef from older animals and live seedstock and commercial beef animals to be shipped into the country. Despite the fact that Mexico has already imported more than 370,000 metric tons of beef from the U.S. from animals under 20 months of age, the border
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
The debate over Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) may have declined among some segments of the industry, however, in Congress, the push to include language from the House version of the 2007 Farm Bill is ongoing. Last week, Sen. Tim Johnson, D-SD, forwarded a letter, signed by 30 other senators, to Agriculture Committee Chair Tom Harkin, D-IA, calling for the House version of COOL to be included in the Senate’s bill before it passes out of committee, a step Harkin said last week he will attempt before Oct. 8. Johnson and his colleagues are pushing for the language to be
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 1, 2007
Retail grocers appear to have beef booked for their lead meat products next week, the first week of October, but after that, it looks like pork and chicken will rule the roost, market analysts and buyers said. The competition from competing meats is making grocery buyers take a hard look at the items they feature, the analysts and buyers said. The price spreads between beef and its competitors are just too great to ignore. But on the other hand, beef is what draws shoppers into the stores, and grocers can’t afford to keep it off the front pages of their
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Sep 24, 2007
The willow stick and water—Can’t live without it Most of us know of the water witch. The water witch was someone who cut a suitable willow (or some other tree) branch into the shape of a Y and went looking for water. The water witch would hold one hand on each segment of the Y and begin walking with the longer tail of the Y in front. Once water was found, the tail of the willow stick would point down and a well was dug. For early settlers, the water witch was important. Without water, there was no reason to set up camp
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Sep 24, 2007
Grazing is part of the solution As expected, USDA has released its final rule expanding cattle and beef imports from Canada. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association [NCBA] has monitored this issue carefully from the beginning, including our filing of comments back in March. Let me say at the onset, this final rule is not perfect. It allows import of beef from cattle of any age, and live cattle born after March 1, 1999. This is the date USDA determined to be the effective date of Canada’s ruminant-to-ruminant feed ban. A feed ban date reflecting Canada’s youngest BSE [bovine spongiform encephalopathy] cases would have
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Sep 24, 2007
—Transportation and oversupply concerns plague market. Last week, Archer Daniels Midland Co. was passed as the largest producer of ethanol in the U.S. when Poet LLC started production at its new 65 million gallon plant in Portland, IN. The new plant, which will consume an estimated 22 million bushels of corn annually, will increase the company’s annual production to 1.1 billion gallons per year from 22 plants nationwide. The latest plant to come on line this year will boost ethanol availability in the U.S. to 7.2 billion gallons in 2007, a number which industry watchdogs point out exceeds demand of
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Sep 20, 2007
13, 2004 McDonald's sees its 16th consecutive increase McDonald's Corp. reported its 16th consecutive increase in monthly same-store sales despite a slight drop in Europe, reports the Associated Press. The fast-food chain said its comparable sales were up 7.2 percent at its U.S. restaurants and 3.9


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