Home / Articles / by WLJ
Search: in Authors List
 

WLJ

Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
Orchestrating Resources You know the scene; everyone arrives early for the musical. People are dressed up and ready to enjoy an evening on the town. The crowds gather in the concession area to mingle and see who else in town was dragged to the performance by their spouse. As much as some of the people don’t want to be there they all know that the music will be interesting listening. Something happens when the conductor stands in front of the orchestra and taps his baton on the music stand. It’s as if the attention of everyone in the orchestra diverts
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
The new players The cattle markets have been playing mind games with everyone over the past few weeks. The corn markets have had a nice little rally, pushing cash corn over $3, which finally has cattle feeders a little concerned. Normally, this would be a short term issue affecting the cattle markets but with the aggressive nature of the ethanol business, it’s almost certain that the grain markets will undergo significant, long term changes. Those changes will also have a great impact on livestock feeding. How will the business change? No one knows for sure, but it is reassuring that some
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
— Additional price increases expected to further pressure market. The recent run up in corn prices has had corn users scrambling to lock in prices if they haven’t already done so. Analysts are encouraging the move, saying the price could be set to rise higher when USDA releases the next corn crop update next month. Many analysts are predicting the harvest estimate to be revised lower as a result of lower than expected yields, particularly in portions of Iowa. Dan Childs, ag economist with the Noble Foundation at Ardmore, OK, speaking at the Greater Oklahoma Farm Show recently said producers are
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
The U.S. The livestock industry has always had to face varying amounts of change, both challenging and beneficial. The most successful of cattlemen are those who look to the future and don’t see the changes as hindrances, but as opportunities. Many cattlemen see technological advances as ways to improve herd health, quality, and overall profitability. Cloning is just such a technology. Cloning is the process by which scientists are able to create an exact duplicate of an animal with the exact gene make up as the original. It is much the same as an identical twin, only the twin is born
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
Fed cattle trade was again slow to develop in a very cautious market. At mid week, feeders were holding out for $90 and packers were offering $85. Packers have had positive margins over the last few days; that margin was only about $5 a head and history has shown us that it doesn’t take a packer long to give it all back to the feeder. Only 14,000 head had traded through Thursday at $87 live, $137.00 dressed. Trade was expected to wait until Friday to get underway at steady money. Slaughter levels were fairly strong even though packers announced that they
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
Gary Eugene Parker Gary Eugene Parker passed away on Oct. 20, 2006, in the arms of his beloved wife following a battle with asbestos-caused cancer. The world became a brighter place on Sept. 10, 1944, when Gary was born in Great Falls, MT. Alton and Esther (Rooney) Parker had no idea how many lives their son would touch in his 62 years, or how successful he would be in every way. He graduated from Great Falls High in 1962 and married Cathy Darko in 1964. They have two daughters, Ronalee Ann (Roni) and Gerri Lynn. Even in high school, Gary had the dream and
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
— Heifer placements up 16 percent from last year. The October cattle on feed report came in near pre-report expectations and was considered largely neutral. It showed the number of cattle on feed, estimated at 11.4 million head, up 9 percent from October 2005. The number was the highest October cattle on feed number for the data series beginning in 1996. The number of cattle and calves being pushed into feedlots by drought this year has continuously been at or near record levels, however the data shows that placements are beginning to taper off. Placements for September were 2.23 million head.
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 30, 2006
—Washington state bill will protect landowners, large and small. Initiative 933 (I-933), a property-rights measure sponsored by the Washington Farm Bureau, is scheduled to be considered by Washington voters on Nov. 7. The initiative, if passed, would require state and local government agencies to either compensate private landowners for regulations that decrease the value of private property, or waive those laws for affected properties. The bill is retroactive and will impact property regulations passed as far back as 1996. Jack Field, executive vice president for Washington Cattlemen’s Association, said the organization is fully behind the initiative. “We are fully behind it, a
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
The cows in your herd are there for a reason. For profit’s sake, let’s hope it’s not just because you can’t catch them. How did they get on the place, and why do you let them stay? You should consider those questions for each cow, but start with the big picture. Why do you have cows? That’s a deeper question than you can answer in a few seconds. Many people looking for even deeper answers have purchased Rick Warren’s spiritual bestseller, “The Purpose-Driven Life.” In the last few years, his concepts have spread to the business world. You can now find
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
Someone's got to do it One thing about the cattle business is when it’s good for one segment, it generally gets good for all segments. The yearling business has maintained a good head of steam despite a threatening corn market. Yearling cattle are still trading at $110 or so and calves are staying strong as promising winter grass conditions develop. The purebred side of this cattle business has been remarkable. Perhaps I should say the Angus business has been remarkable. The trickle-down theory works pretty well and the purebred breeders are certainly getting their due by providing good genetics to
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), with the help of the Beef Checkoff Program, has conducted a study to identify ways to possibly increase the demand for beef. The long-range goal of the cattle industry is to increase beef demand 10 percent by 2010. With this in mind, checkoff dollars were used to assess the “beef brand.” Rick Husted, chief operating officer of NCBA, describes the “beef brand” as “everything about beef that makes up consumers’ perceptions about your product (beef).” The study assessed consumer behaviors and attributes about beef and competing proteins. The results are currently being socialized throughout
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
There was some early, light trade last week in Nebraska at $135 dressed basis while most dressed offers were holding firm in a range of $140-142 in the northern Plains. In the south, offers were in the $90 range with buyers offering only $85 for inventories, which were slightly larger than the prior week. Analysts were calling for trade steady with the previous week, when trade finally developed in earnest. The last substantial trade was at $87-88 live basis and $135-138 dressed two weeks ago. Feedlots were holding out for higher money last week as a result of higher boxed
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
The practice of implanting stocker and feeder cattle is widely believed to be the single most profitable practice a producer can implement. However, for a variety of reasons, including the growing natural beef market and problems with end quality, only about 30 percent of cattle producers use growth implants. Implants rely on extremely low doses of hormones or similar compounds to boost daily gain in cattle. “Developing a good implant strategy can improve daily gains by up to 20 percent, improve efficiency up to 15 percent, and potentially reduce production costs by at least 10 percent,” said Dan Loy, Iowa State
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
The worldwide picture for U.S. beef exports looks positive, according to Clayton Yeutter, and that’s good news for cattlemen. Speaking at a joint meeting of the Texas Cattle Feeders Association (TCFA) and the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA) in Amarillo, Yeutter told cattlemen that there is some good news in the international competitive picture. Cattle feeders were in Amarillo for the TCFA annual convention and TSCRA members gathered for their fall board and committee meetings. Yeutter, a past USDA secretary and former U.S. trade representative, believes that beef’s traditional export markets will come back fairly quickly and that’s encouraging
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
It is hard to imagine. Sure, we watched, helplessly, as storms slammed into our Gulf Coast, leaving nothing but destruction in their wake. We watched, as our fellow Americans struggled to cope with the massive blow that Mother Nature dealt them, with a surreal, almost dream-like quality. But it’s nearly impossible to understand the devastation that hit our southern neighbors in the state of Louisiana when two storms, Katrina and Rita, made landfall over one year ago. Homes were destroyed, lives were lost, and the landscape was forever changed. One of the most popular cities in the U.S. was leveled by
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
Most of the country will see winter temperatures above normal, though slightly cooler than last year’s very warm winter, according to the winter weather outlook announced today by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). According to scientists at the NOAA Climate Prediction Center who produce the outlook, drought conditions also are expected to improve in most areas of the Southwest, while some drought conditions are anticipated in parts of the Pacific Northwest. The projections, based on the last edition of the U.S. Seasonal Outlook, were issued by NOAA in conjunction with the 2006-2007 Winter Fuels Outlook Conference. Weak El Niño
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
Fall is finally here and the sound of bawling calves can be heard for miles around ranches. It is time for many producers to market their calves and choose which cows to cull and which to keep for another winter. Many ranchers will utilize their local auction markets to sell their calves and cull cows. Those producers’ $1-per-head checkoff assessment will be automatically collected by brand inspectors or the auction market when their cattle are sold. But for those producers who don’t market their cattle through an auction market facility—for the producers who sell via private treaty—what are their responsibilities
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 23, 2006
Over the years that I have been traveling, I have had the opportunity to attend quite a few benefit auctions and banquets and, for the most part, they are all the same. But as with everything, there are exceptions. A couple of weeks ago, Geri and I had the opportunity to attend the Magic of the Vine benefit dinner and auction held on the grounds of the Jim and Sue Coleman estate. The Coleman’s generously hosted this wonderful event in conjunction with their annual female sale that was held the next day. The benefit was for the Angus Foundation and
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 16, 2006
What to compare? How do you know if you are doing better or worse than you were in your business five years ago? You probably have a gut reaction that popped into your head immediately when you read that question. Did you hear yourself put a question mark at the end of your answer? “Better…I guess,” you might have thought to yourself. If you are not sure, then we have some work to do. I know you like the part of the business that allows you the freedom to work with the animals and be part of the best industry in
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Oct 16, 2006
Constitutional debate Since the U.S. House of Representatives voted two months ago to ban the slaughter of horses for human consumption, there has been a great deal of head scratching about what to do next. The most common belief in the industry, with many basing their argument on private property rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, seems to be that the bill is unconstitutional. There is, apparently, a widespread belief that the government can’t ban the slaughter of horses because it would prevent horse owners from doing as they please with their property. In fact, the opposite is true. The government