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Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
Alberta Premier Ralph Klein suggested earlier this month that Canada seriously look into a mass cull of older and other BSE-suspect cows in an effort to restore international confidence in Canadian beef. No formal request has been made, however, Klein’s suggestion has been taken into account by several groups, which are widely divided on the question. Klein last week specified that he was suggesting a “cull” and not mass slaughter. “I haven't suggested a mass slaughter. I haven't used that word,” Klein said. “I am saying that there is a need for a cull, but how that cull is achieved is entirely
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
— R-CALF invitation snubbed. The nation’s two largest cattle producer organizations will not align themselves with each other to legally challenge final regulatory rules governing Canadian cattle and beef entering the U.S., despite apparently narrowing their differences on the matter. On Tuesday, Jan. 18, Leo McDonnell, president of R-CALF USA, sent a letter to Jan Lyons, president of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), inviting NCBA and its affiliates to publicly support R-CALF’s pending lawsuit against that import rule. “During the past few days I have reviewed reports and statements issued by you and your organization suggesting that NCBA may be reconsidering its
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
— Holds promise as livestock feed. Dirt, sun and rain or irrigation are all the basic requirements a producer needs to grow a new variety of oats that is said to have dramatically higher yields, be high in crude protein and have more digestibility than other oat varieties. This year will be the first year the new “delayed heading” variety, called EverLeaf 126, will be marketed in the U.S. But, preliminary testing has shown better quality, tonnage and higher forage yields than typical oat varieties. Delayed heading enables a wider harvesting window, according to researchers. “So if it is raining, or a producer
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
Charlie Bell Former president and CEO of McDonald’s Corp. Charlie Bell died Monday, Jan. 17, after battling colo-rectal cancer. Bell died in his hometown of Sydney, Australia, at the age of 44. Bell was elected McDonald's president and CEO by the board of directors in April 2004, following the death of Jim Cantalupo. Bell previously served as president and COO, and was responsible for the company's more than 30,000 restaurants in 119 countries, during which time he also became a director of the company. Before his promotion to president and COO in December 2002, Bell served as president of McDonald’s Europe, and
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
— Feeders gain on spring prospects, corn decline. — Calves stronger on grazing outlook. Optimism that last week’s fed cattle prices would be stronger than the previous week’s level of $92-93 live, $145 dressed still hadn’t come to fruition as of Thursday. Fed trade was almost nonexistent last week with packer bids and cattle feeders asking prices being spread up to $6 apart. Analysts said they were expecting fairly active Friday afternoon trade, and that it would probably be at mostly steady money, if not a little softer than two weeks ago. Through mid-afternoon Thursday, only light trade had been reported in
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
— OCM not expected to appeal. The judge charged with deciding whether a privately funded and administered voluntary cattle checkoff program is legal refused to hear the case and tossed it out last week. The organization behind the program said they were disappointed with the decision but also indicated it would not appeal. The Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM) filed the case in U.S. District Court, Lincoln, NE, asking that USDA’s order to cease the group’s voluntary program be overturned and that cattle producers be allowed to voluntarily set aside money to the “self help” promotional program. OCM was asking the court
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
Wholesale Choice boxed beef prices for the week ending Jan. 15 hit a seven-month high after posting the strongest weekly rally since early April 2004. USDA reported the Choice beef carcass composite value on Thursday at $154.38 per cwt, which was the highest it has been since the middle of June. Choice prices Friday dipped to 153.93, but for the week the category gained $10.75, or 7.5 percent, which was the largest since the week-ended April 9, 2004. Bob Wilson, analyst with HedgersEdge.com, said the composite average for choice beef that week gained $17.39. That week’s top was still nearly $10 below
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
An attempt to increase business in Chicago Mercantile Exchange electronic livestock futures may be having the opposite effect. To begin the year, the CME instituted a lead market maker program for electronic livestock futures to increase on-screen liquidity and volume. So far, electronic live cattle futures have put up the best volume numbers, with 418 contracts traded last Thursday. But, many traditional CME cattle pit traders who fill orders by open outcry are not happy with one feature of the new program. As an incentive to attract CME e-livestock lead market makers, an approved LMM is allowed to match a pre-existing
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 24, 2005
Argentina's 2005 beef exports will hit at least $1.3 billion, Agriculture Secretary Miguel Campos said last Wednesday. This would put beef exports up about $300 million from 2004, Campos said, noting that Argentina is currently shipping beef to 85 countries. Beef sales have been on the rise since 2003, when they totaled 379,366 tons, or $694 million, according to Argentina’s animal and food health agency, also known as Senasa. “Beef exports are rising and they will continue to rise," Campos said. "Production is up and it will continue to rise to meet demand.” Last Tuesday the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) declared northern
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 17, 2005
A few days after Canada announced its latest case of (BSE) Canadian Chief Veterinary Officer Brian Evans visited the U.S. starting last Wednesday in an effort to convince Congress and government officials that Canadian cattle and beef are safe. Canada reported two new cases of BSE in less than two weeks—Jan. 2 and Jan. 11—and shortly after USDA unveiled a new rule that is scheduled to lift the U.S. ban on Canadian cattle by March 7. Several U.S. lawmakers reacted to both new Canadian cases by demanding the USDA withdraw the new rule, but Evans told reporters Thursday his message is: "The
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 17, 2005
— Significant downturn unlikely also. Cheaper-than-normal feed corn prices are expected to remain in place through at least the first half of the year, as 2004 production and end-of-year stocks were both higher than previously forecasted. Several market analysts, however, didn’t think prices would drop much more either as corn exports and domestic ethanol demand this year are expected to eclipse 2004 levels. According to USDA’s latest crop production forecast, the 2004 corn harvest is expected to total 11.81 billion bushels, 50 million bushels more than was projected in November and 1.7 billion bushels more than the previous record harvest of 2003.
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 17, 2005
A hunter in Michigan was diagnosed with a rare human case of bovine tuberculosis after he cut his hand while gutting an infected deer, state health officials said. He is the first living person diagnosed with the strain of bovine tuberculosis that has been found in some northern Michigan deer and cattle in recent years, said T. J. Bucholz, spokesman for the Michigan Department of Community Health. The disease, which is difficult for humans to get but highly contagious in animals, has saddled farmers with costly testing requirements and limits to how they market their cattle in neighboring states. Officials would not
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
Findings from an Internet survey indicate future farm success will involve farmers and ranchers and their cooperatives knowing how to effectively manage the Internet for marketing. That was the sentiment registered by 86 percent of individuals responding to an on-line survey conducted by National Farmers Union, a general farm organization representing more than a quarter of a million farm families nationwide and headquartered in metro Denver. “The purpose of this survey was to find out from farmers, ranchers and rural citizens ways they may be using the Internet and its relevance to their farm business and local cooperatives,” said Jeff Moser,
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
Between February and March, Argentina's National Agriculture Health and Quality Service, known as Senasa, will vaccinate cattle with a formula that includes an antigen to protect against virus C, a variant of the highly infectious and fast-spreading disease. The formula also will include antigens against viruses A and O, La Nacion reported. The effort will be carried out in Formosa and Salta, northern provinces bordering Bolivia and Paraguay, with the aim to avert another outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in its herd of 50 million to 55 million cattle from cutting beef exports because of sanitation requirements in foreign markets. “We
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
Lone Star reports earnings Lone Star Steakhouse & Saloon, Inc. reported fourth quarter earnings were up for all its restaurants except for Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon which ended the fourth quarter down 1.7 percent. Positive fourth quarter earnings include Sullivan’s Steakhouse, 3.1 percent, Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House, 17 percent, and Texas Land & Cattle Steak House, 7.9 percent. Year ending results were up for all its restaurants—Lone Star Steakhouse and Saloon, 0.6 percent, Sullivan’s Steakhouse, 5.6 percent, Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steak House, 23.2 percent and Texas Land & Cattle Steak House, 9.9 percent. Company earnings were up
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
Total direct costs of production in 2005 will increase more than 10 percent for most crops because of higher fertilizer and fuel expenses, according to Andrew Swenson, North Dakota State University Extension Service farm management specialist. Fertilizer is typically the largest and most volatile direct cost of crop production. Fertilizer prices are higher because of energy costs and global demand. Unfortunately, this coincides with low levels of soil nitrogen throughout the state, except for the southwest region. This means more of the expensive fertilizer is necessary for the same yield goal of a year ago. Fuel costs are also sharply higher
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
Two U.S. and two Canadian representatives spoke to a group of producers, press and spectators in the International business at the 2005 National Western Stock Show. The topic of the meeting was the issues surrounding the reopening of the Canadian border. Each of the speakers addressed the economic impact, trade relations, how to deal with future trade disruption, as well as national animal identification. Skylar Houston, a producer and chairman of the National Western Stock Show International Agri Business Committee mediated the event. Houston said, “Canada has always been a long standing trading partner and the cattle industry has become integrated
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
— Investigation initiated. More than 150 cattle were found already dead late last week and another 20 were euthanized in a central Alberta feedlot after they were fed too much high-concentrate grain upon entering the facility, Canadian veterinarian sources said The situation happened just days after the feedlot went into receivership and was seized by the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. Acute carbohydrate ingestion, or simple overload, appeared to be the cause of the deaths, said Kee Jim, a veterinarian who was called in to investigate Sunday morning by the Calgary-based receiver, Deloitte and Touche. “Cattle lack the biological mechanisms to stop themselves from
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
In a country clouded by a deep suspicion of foods from cloned animals, a little Sunshine may help soften consumers' fears. Born on the coldest night of the year in mid-December, Sunshine is a female calf that's just like countless other calves born around the country. The only thing special about Sunshine is her mama, KC, the first cow ever cloned from cells collected from a dead cow. KC was named after the kidney cell from which she was cloned after it was taken from a side of beef in the freezer. “She's a beautiful calf,” said Steve Stice, the University of Georgia
Cattle Market & Farm Reports, Editorials
by WLJ
Jan 14, 2005
What a coincidence, another cow from Canada tested positive for BSE last week. That was the second positive test in just nine days and the fourth overall cow of Canadian origin. This thing is starting to reach epidemic proportions, at least by our (U.S.) standards. It’s ironic that two cows have tested positive since USDA announced their final regulations to import cattle from countries of “minimum BSE risk,” including Canada. I suppose the big question is what will USDA do now about that proposed import rule on beef and cattle. At this point it appears that USDA plans on going forward, implementing


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