WLJ - Opinion https://wlj.net/articles.sec-35-1-opinion.html Sat, 29 Aug 15 00:00:00 -0600 en hourly 1 Fear factor https://wlj.net/article-35-fear-factor.html Fear factor
Consumer Reports used to have some credibility in my book. But after last week’s publication of their Beef Report, they lost some ground.


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Federal double standard https://wlj.net/article-35-federal-double-standard.html Federal double standard
The Animas River in Colorado is a beautiful place; my late son David was a river guide on it for a couple years. It’s a shame that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ruined it…for a while. The EPA was attempting to clean up the old Gold King Mine near Silverton and accidentally.


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Beef Talk - Blue moons and summer blues https://wlj.net/article-35-beef-talk.html Beef Talk - Blue moons and summer blues
The recent passing of a blue moon soon will be followed by the passing of summer. A blue moon is the second full moon in the same month, something that doesn’t happen that often (the next blue moon will be in January 2018). But, like life, it will happen.


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Legally Speaking - Are “ag-gag” laws constitutional? https://wlj.net/article-35-legally-speaking.html Legally Speaking - Are “ag-gag” laws constitutional?
“Ag-gag” is the term used to describe anti-whistleblower laws that apply within the agriculture industry. About half a dozen states have passed laws to criminalize surreptitious filming of alleged abuses of animals on farms and ranches.


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Listening to millennials https://wlj.net/article-35-listening-to-millennials.html Listening to millennials
This last year, I served as Chair of the checkoff’s Market Research Working Group, which oversees consumer market-research efforts. Both state and national checkoff efforts should be based on research.


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Record fire season https://wlj.net/article-35-record-fire-season.html Record fire season
We are amid the worst fire year in documented history and it doesn’t look like there are any signs of relief in sight.


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Guest Opinion - I love conducting prescribed burns https://wlj.net/article-35-guest-opinion.html Guest Opinion - I love conducting prescribed burns
One of the many things that I have learned since arriving at the Noble Foundation is that prescribed burns are a big thing out here in the West. In Kentucky, I had only ever seen some of the national forests burned on occasion to reduce the chance of a wildfire.


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Beef Talk - Grazing: setting the base stocking rate https://wlj.net/article-35-beef-talk.html Beef Talk - Grazing: setting the base stocking rate
In my search to better understand stocking rate, I obtained a better appreciation for major land resource areas (MLRA) and ecological sites. For instance, by looking up the MLRA for the Dickinson Research Extension Center (DREC) ranch in Dunn County, ND, the MLRA is 54.


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Pasture Management - How to grow more grass without adequate rainfall https://wlj.net/article-35-pasture-management.html Pasture Management - How to grow more grass without adequate rainfall
So we tried her method of growing with deep mulch, we layered eight inches of old straw between tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers in the springtime. All the plants turned yellow. Trying to figure out what happened; we pulled back the straw cover and found the soil surface was like mud.


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Ensuring quality of grain, forages for weaned calves https://wlj.net/article-35-ensuring-quality-of-grain-forages-for-weaned-calves.html Ensuring quality of grain, forages for weaned calves
Cool, wet growing seasons may delay grain maturity, and can result in mold and mycotoxin formation in the field. Producers are faced with the decision to feed moldy feeds or forages and knowing there may be a potential risk to animal productivity.


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Guest Opinion - Access to China key factor in exports https://wlj.net/article-35-guest-opinion.html Guest Opinion - Access to China key factor in exports
The U.S. red meat industry has achieved outstanding export growth in recent years, enhancing profitability for all members of the supply chain. In 2014, both beef exports ($7.13 billion) and pork exports ($6.67 billion) shattered previous records for export value.


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WOTUS, EPA stumble https://wlj.net/article-35-wotus-epa-stumble.html WOTUS, EPA stumble
It is appears that the Environmental Protection Agency’s rule expanding the definition of waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) took a tumble last week. The Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) has refused to be associated with the EPA’s plan. Ironically, the Corps is the agency that must implement the EPA’s new plan, and they don’t seem to agree much with EPA.


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Vet's Perspective - Managing cattle through heat and potential drought https://wlj.net/article-35-vets-perspective.html Vet's Perspective - Managing cattle through heat and potential drought
After spring showers comes summer sun—sometimes with a vengeance. Any summer’s heat and dry weather throughout the western states will present an added challenge to producers in the region. Increased costs for management of livestock with limited resources may be seen by consumers if drought conditions arise.


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Hammond Case: What can you do? https://wlj.net/article-35-hammond-case-what-can-you-do.html Hammond Case: What can you do?
Gerri Badden, Public Information Officer U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of Oregon Office phone: 503/727-1033 Also, Oregon Representative Greg Walden (R) has invited concerned citizens to email him regarding the Hammond case, which his office is following closely.


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Humbled https://wlj.net/article-35-humbled.html Humbled
The Livestock Publications Council (LPC) held their annual meeting in Scottsdale, AZ, to acknowledge and critique member publications and get to know colleagues who communicate to livestock producers around the nation. This group has been around for a while.


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Kay's Korner - “Born and Raised” labeling exists https://wlj.net/article-35-kays-korner.html Kay's Korner - “Born and Raised” labeling exists
Back in the early 2000s , when the battle to introduce mandatory country of origin labeling (COOL) was raging, California rancher Carolyn Carey quietly took the issue into her own hands. Rather than supporting mandatory COOL, she introduced a “Born and Raised in the USA” program and label that was approved for most meat and poultry species.



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Beef Talk - Grazing systems are major land resource areas https://wlj.net/article-35-beef-talk.html Beef Talk - Grazing systems are major land resource areas
Every rancher needs to ask three questions: “How many acres does one need?” “What is the stocking rate or carrying capacity of those acres?” and “How many grazing months are available?” The profitability and sustainability of the ranch are embedded in understanding grazing systems and getting the answers correct.


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Helping restaurants sell more steak https://wlj.net/article-35-helping-restaurants-sell-more-steak.html Helping restaurants sell more steak
So how are we helping restaurant operators sell more beef? Our checkoff created an infographic to help explain. In a nutshell, the number of people eating steak at dinner (in my neck of the woods, that’s supper!) is growing.


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Leadership challenge https://wlj.net/article-35-leadership-challenge.html Leadership challenge
The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) and Cattlemen’s Beef Board (CBB) set some lofty goals a couple weeks ago at their mid-year meeting in Denver. They released their new Long Range Plan (LRP) for the beef industry, as they have done every five years since 1990.


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DID YOU KNOW - Tenderness always key factor in consumer demand https://wlj.net/article-35-did-you-know.html DID YOU KNOW - Tenderness always key factor in consumer demand
On my bucket list was eating at a quaint old hotel in the Flint Hills known for quality steaks. So I met an old friend, ordered a glass of Merlot and a USDA Prime but otherwise unbranded sirloin. When the steak arrived, flavor was outstanding, juiciness great—but it was so tough I did what I have never done before and sent it back to the kitchen.


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Consumers have questions; BQA is your answer https://wlj.net/article-35-consumers-have-questions-bqa-is-your-answer.html Consumers have questions; BQA is your answer
It is clear that consumers are asking more questions than ever about where their food comes from and how it is raised and the use of antibiotics is at the forefront of the consumer’s mind.


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Constant motion - U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef's first meeting https://wlj.net/article-35-constant-motion.html Constant motion - U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef's first meeting
The U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef held their first general assembly meeting last week in Denver during the NCBA midyear meeting. They have a basic operational structure nailed down and are open for business. Now they need to develop a plan to measure the industry.


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Beef Talk - Pounds, efficiency, quality https://wlj.net/article-35-beef-talk.html Beef Talk - Pounds, efficiency, quality
Pounds, efficiency and quality are three simple words, but in reality, there is nothing simple about understanding these three words. Many producers see understanding pounds as simple: Produce the maximum possible. But living things do not do well at the extremes, so maximum brings additional problems.


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Black Ink https://wlj.net/article-35-black-ink.html Black Ink
File that under the “highly unlikely to ain’t-gonna-happen,” category, but stay with me. If every single backgrounder and cattle feeder decided they weren’t going to purchase “high risk” calves; if they refused to take unweaned, unvaccinated calves, that’s virtually what would happen.


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Feeder fears and trade tactics https://wlj.net/article-35-feeder-fears-and-trade-tactics.html Feeder fears and trade tactics
Reports are claiming one of the best grass summers in memory across the midwestern states. This has dried up summer culling and delayed beef sales. In addition, heifer retention is on the up-trend, keeping summer beef sales lower than projected.


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Beef Talk - Pounds of calf weaned per acre https://wlj.net/article-35-beef-talk.html Beef Talk - Pounds of calf weaned per acre
[Author’s note: This Beef- Talk concerns pounds of beef produced per acre utilizing two different types of cattle to help demonstrate what pounds of calf weaned per acre means. The information presented, at this point, is an example of production data reflecting pounds of calf weaned per acre.


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Vet's Perspective - Foot rot therapy and prevention https://wlj.net/article-35-vets-perspective.html Vet's Perspective - Foot rot therapy and prevention
Many areas of the western states have recently seen a tremendous amount of rainfall accompanied by slick and muddy conditions. Our livestock have no choice (in most circumstances) but to stand and travel amid standing water and muck as well as rough and stony ground.


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FMD round two https://wlj.net/article-35-fmd-round-two.html FMD round two
We have one of those rare times when every organization representing agriculture agrees on an issue. The Obama administration announced last week that they will start to allow 14 regions of Brazil and Argentina to export fresh and frozen beef to the U.


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Beef Talk - May calving is productive https://wlj.net/article-35-beef-talk.html Beef Talk - May calving is productive
But even without major tweaking, at least for the center, those May-born calves are holding their own. Last year, the center’s beef herd may have started 100 pounds light, but the calves actually had an adjusted 205-day weight of 681 pounds.


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Kay's Korner - Price discovery silence https://wlj.net/article-35-kays-korner.html Kay's Korner - Price discovery silence
Who would have believed the discovery of live cattle prices would change so much in a decade? Or that the public cries in the 1990s over “captive supply” would be replaced by a public silence about the disappearing cash market and the preponderance...


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