I love John Wayne movies, and one of my favorites is "The Cowboys."
John Wayne isn't the self-actualized, emotion-spewing modern man in this
film, but he obviously learned to love and respect those kids, and vice
Click here to read more of this story by Troy Marshall
Herefords - The Efficiency Experts
Adding Hereford genetics to your herd makes perfect business sense in a
cost-driven economy. Excellent conversion, hardiness, fertility,
longevity and even disposition can help reduce input costs. These
Hereford efficiencies are ideal for your herd, your business and your
plans for the future. Low-maintenance cattle, long-term profit. Now
BEEF readers recognize the name of Kindra Gordon, former
BEEF managing editor, as a sage chronicler of beef industry
happenings. But the Whitewood, SD-based freelancer has branched out into
a new genre with the publication of her family-themed guidebook to the
Black Hills of South Dakota entitled "Black Hills Family Fun Guide."
The book is arranged by theme and covers everything from presidential
places, museums and animal attractions to recreation equipment rentals,
mini golf courses and chuckwagon supper shows. More than 150 Black Hills
attractions, as well as Black Hills facts, history and maps are
The book is available through Borders, Barnes & Noble, Amazon.com and
the publisher's Web site at: www.adventurepublications.net.
Contact her at email@example.com.
-- Joe Roybal
The Senate began debate this week on an energy bill that would
increase the renewable fuels standard (RFS) to 36 billion gals. The bill
deals with biofuels, energy efficiency, auto fuel economy standards, and
advanced energy technologies.
There's a difference of opinion regarding this legislation between
various ag groups. The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) stated: "This
bipartisan bill strikes an appropriate balance to continue the momentum
spurred by the 2005 energy bill while providing the necessary incentives
to bring next generation ethanol technology to the commercial market.
This bill is to cellulosic ethanol what the 2005 energy bill was to
The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) said, "This legislation
blazes a trail toward more robust, more diverse, and more affordable
domestic energy supplies. And it does so in a manner that is
environmentally and economically responsible."
But in a letter to the Senate leadership, a number of food and ag groups
raised their concerns regarding what the impact of increasing the RFS
would have on the food industry. The letter stated the increase in the
RFS "will inevitably be met by corn ethanol, and it is likely to have
significant impacts on food and feed production, public health, and
land, air and water resources." Those signing the letter included the
American Meat Institute, Grocery Manufactures/Food Products Association,
Kellogg Company, Nestle USA, National Cattlemen's Beef Association,
National Chicken Council, National Turkey Federation, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola
Company, Unilever, and United Egg Producers.
-- P. Scott Shearer, Washington, D.C.
BullShop.com. is a useful site to
anyone buying or selling breeding stock. Over the past five years, it
has grown into the largest, all breeds, breeding stock site serving the
cow-calf industry. The site is presented in a state-by-state format
making it easy for buyers and sellers to use.
Breeders can choose national or state ads in their marketing efforts.
The various free and paid ad categories include breeder ads, semen ads,
embryo ads, state ads, featured ads and sale ads. Click to visit www.BullShop.com. Click to checkout
the free ads you can post on BullShop at www.bullshop.com/show_page.php?id=38
For the third consecutive week, the U.S. average retail price for
regular gasoline decreased, falling 8.1¢ to $3.076/gal., as of
Monday, or 17¢ higher than this time last year. Meanwhile, retail
diesel fell for the second consecutive week, decreasing 0.7¢ to
$2.792, or 12.6¢/gal. lower than at this time last year.
All regions reported gasoline price cuts, with the East Coast falling
4.6¢ to $3.022, and the Midwest seeing the largest decrease at
15.2¢ to $3.073. Gulf Coast prices fell 5.8¢ to $2.962, Rocky
Mountain prices fell 3.5¢ to $3.225, and the West Coast was down
5.3¢ to $3.265. California fell 5.4¢ to $3.32, which is
9.5¢ above last year's price.
Meanwhile, East Coast prices for retail diesel fell 0.5¢ to
$2.789/gal., and the Midwest was down 1.1¢ to $2.753. The Gulf
Coast saw a decrease of 0.7¢ to $2.742, and Rocky Mountain prices
were down 2.1¢ to $2.937. Only the West Coast reported a weekly
increase, rising 1¢ to $2.941. California prices rose 2.5¢ to
$2.997, which is 22¢/gal. lower than at this time last year.
-- Energy Information Administration
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A number of environmental groups have written the House and Senate
leadership and the Ag Committees leadership urging them to increase
mandatory funding for conservation by $10 billion over five years during
consideration of the farm bill. The groups wrote, "Boosting conservation
spending in the 2007 farm bill would also help more farmers and more
regions receive a fair share of federal farm spending."
Some of the groups signing the letter were Environmental Defense,
Defenders of Wildlife, Environmental Working Group, American Farmland
Trust, The Wilderness Society, Sierra Club, and Friends of Earth.
-- P. Scott Shearer, Washington, D.C.
Japan said this week that it found no safety problems at the 28 U.S.
meatpacking facilities it inspected in 14 states last month. Later, it
further announced an easing of Japan's policy of 100% inspection of U.S.
beef shipments to a sampling-based protocol.
USDA Secretary Mike Johanns welcomed the news and said the U.S. "is
eager to refocus our discussions with Japan on beef trade based on OIE
standards." The U.S. was recently cited as a country at controlled-risk
for BSE by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), which means
trade should be allowed in all beef irrespective of age. Japan currently
allows only imports of boneless U.S. beef from cattle 20 months of age
In further good news this week, the Kyodo News reported that
Japan intends to begin negotiations with the U.S., possibly in July, to
bring its import policy concerning U.S. beef more into line with
international standards. The report says Japanese Ag, Forestry and
Fisheries Minister Norihiko Akagi will likely meet Johanns in Germany
next week to confirm the launch of negotiations, possibly the following
In addition, Malaysia announced this week it will accept bone-in beef
and variety meats from cattle of all ages from the U.S., consistent with
OIE guidelines. Of this, Johanns said: "We applaud this decision and
look forward to confirming the details with the Malaysian government.
"Science provides us with clear data upon which international trading
standards were built. All of our trading partners must be mindful of
these guidelines and work toward complying with them. We are pressing
for clear, aggressive timelines from our trading partners that
demonstrate their commitment to internationally-agreed upon OIE
-- Joe Roybal
Take the Producer Poll!
Results from last week's poll:
When cow-calf economics get tough, which areas do you cut corners on
Vote now to answer
this week's question:
- Other -- 68.89%
- Genetics -- 22.22%
- Animal nutrition -- 8.89%
- Herd health -- 0%
What outlets will you use to market calves and yearlings this
Stay tuned next week for the poll results and a new question.
- Sale barn
- Video auction
- Traditional order-buyer
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those bales put up, investing anywhere from $10-15/round bale after
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Click here to read more of this article by Alaina Burt
The Environmental Working Group released new data on its Web site
this week regarding who receives farm payments. The information
indicates that 10% of subsidy recipients collected 73% of all subsidies,
while 67% of all farmers and ranchers didn't receive any government
"subsidy" payments. Also, from 2003-2005 half of the crop payments went
to 19 Congressional districts. The information is available at www.ewg.org.
-- P. Scott Shearer, Washington, D.C.
Pelton Simmental/Red Angus, owned by the Lynn and Gary Pelton
families, and managed by Lynn Pelton, is the Beef Improvement
Federation's (BIF) 2007 Seedstock Award winner. The Pelton operation
vied with nine other top seedstock operations for the annual honor
bestowed during the BIF's annual meeting last week in Ft. Collins, CO.
Other finalists included:
5L Red Angus, owned and managed by Larry and Lisa Mehlhoff, Montana;
Bridle Bit Simmentals, owned by Errol and Gayle Cook & Sons (Chad, Brent
and Brad) and managed by Chad Cool, Colorado; Echo Ridge Farm, owned and
managed by C.W. Pratt, Virginia; Heartland Cattle Company, owned and
managed by Tom and Cora Lynch, Iowa; Lindskov-Thiel Ranch, owned by Les
and Marcia Lindskov & Brent and Nancy Thiel, managed by Brent Thiel,
Star Lake Cattle Ranch, owned by Jim and Randy Blin, managed by Montie
Soules, Oklahoma; TC Ranch, owned by Vance, Connie and Dru Uden,
Nebraska; Tinney Farms, owned by Howard Tinney, and managed by Arlin
Taylor, Alabama; and Tomlinson Farms, owned by George and Deanna
Tomlinson, managed by Tommy Tomlinson, Illinois.
For the latest results and more coverage of the BIF annual meeting,
including the proceedings, visit: www.bifconference.com.
-- Joe Roybal
The Center for Animal Disease Modeling and Surveillance (CADMS) in
the University of California-Davis School of Veterinary Medicine needs
livestock producers' help in a nationwide study designed to protect the
U.S. from foot-and-mouth disease (FMD). CADMS needs livestock producers
to participate in an online survey to gather data on animal movements
and management practices that will be used to build a simulation model
to predict the duration and magnitude of an FMD outbreak, as well as
determine the best strategies for containment.
FMD, which was last diagnosed in the U.S. in 1929, is cited by the
Department of Homeland Security as the top bioterrorism risk against
U.S. ag because of its infectivity and virulence. Study director Tim
Carpenter says the model will "provide decision-makers with a valuable
tool for rapid response and will help determine the best strategies,
including vaccination, to contain an outbreak and minimize impact to the
livestock industry." All information will be kept confidential and be
used only for modeling purposes.
Find the survey at www.cadms.ucdavis.edu. For
more info, contact Pelayo Alvarez at firstname.lastname@example.org or
-- University of California-Davis news release
"Multiple Impacts -- Multiple Strategies: How Wyoming Cattle
Producers are Surviving in Prolonged Drought" reports the details of a
2005 survey conducted by the University of Wyoming on how area producers
deal with drought. The survey is available online at ces.uwyo.edu/PUBS/B1178.pdf.
The surveys were sent to a random sample of 3,000 producers across the
state, with a total of 1,190 returned. The survey found producers were
more likely to use multiple strategies as the drought lengthened from
the period 2000 to 2004.
The most frequently cited strategies were purchasing additional winter
feed, partial herd liquidation and participating in some type of
government feed-assistance program. The next two more frequently used
strategies were leasing additional grazing and early weaning if calves.
The least common strategy was total herd liquidation.
Hard copies of B-1178 are available for $4 each by e-mailing email@example.com or calling
-- University of Wyoming news release
The United Nations Food and Agricultural Organizations (FAO) warned
this week that large-scale industrial livestock production that focuses
on a limited range of breeds is the single largest threat to global farm
animal diversity, with one breed becoming extinct monthly (www.fao.org/newsroom/en/news/2007/1000598/index.html)
A new report entitled, "The State Of The World's Animal Genetic
Resources for Food And Agriculture," says skyrocketing global demand for
meat, milk and eggs had led to the heavy reliance on intensively bred
animals. Read it at: www.fao.org/docrep/meeting/011/ah834e/ah834e00.htm
FAO Assistant Director-General Alexander Muller characterized the report
as a "wake-up call to the world," and stressed the need to bolster the
global food supply by maintaining and deploying a wide array of genetic
resources, which are "vital and irreplaceable."
One breed of livestock has become extinct every month over the past
seven years, and 20% of the world's cattle, goat, pig, horse and poultry
breeds are in danger of annihilation, the report says.
The developing world will be the main site of breed diversity loss in
this century, it cautioned. Among the most frequently used breeds of
cattle, genetic diversity is being undercut by the use of only a few
very popular sires for breeding.
"Effective management of animal genetic diversity is essential to global
food security, sustainable development and the livelihoods of millions
of people," said Irene Hoffman, Chief of FAO's Animal Production
-- United Nations News Center
The American Meat Institute (AMI) and a coalition of meat, livestock
and poultry organizations unveiled www.balancedfoodandfuel.org
this week, a Web site dedicated to informing policy-makers, the media
and the public about the impact of national ethanol policy on the
industry and on consumers. The coalition member sponsors include the
American Meat Institute, National Chicken Council, National Cattlemen's
Beef Association, National Meat Association, National Milk Producers
Federation, National Pork Producers Council, National Turkey Federation
and United Egg Producers.
"Our nation's current ethanol policy may be good news for petroleum
blenders, but it's a raw deal for animal agriculture and consumers," the
site says. "A more rational policy, however, can help avert the coming
economic crisis." On the site, the coalition details the policies that
its members believe will help balance food and fuel policy.
The coalition recommends the following steps:
Members of the coalition are American Meat Institute, National Chicken
Council, National Cattlemen's Beef Association, National Meat
Association, National Milk Producers Federation, National Pork Producers
Council, National Turkey Federation, and United Egg Producers.
- Renewable Energy and Byproduct Research -- Federal
funding should be provided for broad-based applied research into
renewable energy technologies, economics, and byproduct safety, quality,
- Emerging Bio-Energy Mandates -- New mandates should be
limited to energy from emerging bio-based sources (i.e. cellulosic,
methane) that do not adversely affect animal feed availability.
- Incentive Neutrality/Counter-Cyclical -- Global energy demand
will increase by more than 50 percent by 2030. Subsidies and tax credits
for agriculture-based energy sources should be equally available among
all forms of energy and source-neutral as a means to grow opportunities
for all forms of energy. Fuel-based tax credits should function
inversely to oil prices.
- Energy Infrastructure Incentives -- We support subsidies/tax
credits to grow agriculture-based energy infrastructure. Infrastructure
incentives should be source/feedstock and renewable energy neutral.
- Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) -- We believe that
policy-makers should provide producers regulatory and legislative policy
options to opt out of CRP to respond to market forces. Support a working
lands approach to reintroduce acres into crop production.
- Import Tariffs -- We support exposing consumers to more
renewable fuels choices by allowing the current ethanol tariff to expire
in December 2008.
-- P. Scott Shearer, Washington, D.C.
Ranchers and range managers are invited to participate in a
range-monitoring workshop focusing on range-monitoring techniques, and
identification of grasses, forbs and sage. In addition, the June 20
workshop, which begins at 10 a.m. at the Fremont County Courthouse in
Lander, WY, will tour federal lands south of Hudson that have undergone
brush treatments. The event is free of charge. Contact Ron Cunningham at
307-332-1044 for more info.
Program instructors are University of Wyoming Extension range experts
Mike Smith and Eric Peterson. Peterson helped produce a bulletin and DVD
to assist public lands permittees and managers implement cooperative
rangeland monitoring programs. It's available at www.uwyo.edu/CES/PUBS/B1169.pdf.
-- University of Wyoming news release
The 2007 Nebraska Grazing Conference, set for Aug. 7-8 at the
Kearney Holiday Inn, offers more than two-dozen speakers from four
states providing an in-depth look at grazing, from animal behavior to
grassland management. Sessions begin Aug. 7 at 10 a.m. and conclude
mid-afternoon Aug. 8.
Among the speakers are BEEF magazine columnists Jim Gerrish, who
will lead a workshop on monitoring grazing lands, and Harlan Hughes, who
will discuss stocking according to weather and cattle cycles.
Registration is $75 before Aug. 1 and $90 after; one-day registration is
$40 before Aug. 1 and $50 after. For more infor, visit www.grassland.unl.edu, call
402-472-4101, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
-- University of Nebraska Center for Grassland
Adding value to calves is the focus of an Aug. 9-10 Kansas State
University conference. Set for Weber Hall on the KSU campus, the two-day
conference will instruct producers on what they can do to become more
efficient and reap the most profit from their business.
Presentations will focus on economics, partnerships, value-added
opportunities and premiums, retained ownership, electronic marketing,
carcass issues, natural beef, preconditioning and verification programs,
animal handling, feeding and more.
Registration, which is $150/person, is due by Aug. 3. For more info on
the conference, visit www.asi.ksu.edu/beefconference
or call Larry Hollis at 785-532-1246. For registration questions,
contact Linda Siebold at 785-532-1281.
-- KSU news release
The Beef Reproduction Task Force, along with other state and
national experts, will host an intensive workshop on "Applied
Reproductive Strategies In Beef Cattle" in Billings, MT, Sept. 11-12.
This will be the eighth national meeting the task force has coordinated
throughout the U.S.
This meeting is for anyone interested in beef cattle reproduction and
estrous synchronization, including ranchers, veterinarians, AI
technicians and Extension personnel, says Rick Funston, program chair
and a University of Nebraska reproductive physiologist.
Check out westcentral.unl.edu/beefrepro/
for more info, or contact John Paterson at 406/994-5562 or email@example.com.
The workshops are coordinated by the Beef Reproduction Task Force,
(members in Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri,
Nebraska, South Dakota, and Virginia) in cooperation with the Montana
State University Extension.
-- Clint Peck
The POWER of one BRAND can change your future in the beef
Certified Angus Beef ®, the oldest, most successful branded
beef program in the industry returned more than $50 million in grid
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fed cattle premiums of $2-$5/cwt. Source-verified, high-percentage Angus
replacement females often top auctions by selling for $50-$100 per head
above cash market. Sale barn surveys conducted at nine auction markets
indicated premiums are paid, not for black-hided cattle, but for
One brand, one breed--the power of one can change your future in the
Certified Angus Beef® and CAB® are registered trademarks of
Certified Angus Beef, LLC
Correction On Brazilian Purchase Of Swift
I'm a Brazilian reader who has received BEEF Cow-Calf Weekly for
quite a while now and find its news and information very useful, as I am
a beef-market analyst. However, I noticed some factual errors in the
June 1 piece, "Swift & Company Goes Brazilian," by Troy Marshall.
The article states that Swift's harvest capacity is 5,500 head/day,
while JBS' capacity prior to the purchase was only 800-1,600/day. And,
that, as JBS lacks the expertise to run such a large plant, it plans to
essentially retain the current Swift management.
However, according to JBS, it has a beef-processing capacity of about
24,100 head/day and Swift of 23,000 head/day. Together, they will
slaughter about 47,100 head/day, becoming the largest beef processor in
the world, bigger than Tyson, which slaughters 32,600 head/day.
Editor's Note: Steve Kay, editor and publisher of Cattle
Buyers Weekly (www.cattlebuyersweekly.com),
a subscription newsletter and the top marketing and business newsletter
for the meat and livestock industry, ranks the world's top-five global
beef processors by annual sales this way:
Steve Kay notes these rankings are based on total global beef-only sales
for fiscal 2006. Actual slaughter is for the latest fiscal year. All
other data are also based on global operations. Data include company
information and Cattle Buyers Weekly estimates.
- Tyson Foods: $11.825
billion annual sales, 37,600-head daily slaughter capacity, 10 plants
worldwide, 8.9 million actual slaughter.
- Cargill, Inc.: $9.3 billion annual sales, 39,300-head daily
slaughter capacity, 13 plants worldwide, 9 million actual
- JBS/Swift: $9.05 billion annual sales, 45,715-head daily slaughter
capacity, 35 plants worldwide, 9.614 million actual slaughter.
- National Beef Packing: $4.636 billion annual sales, 14,800-head
daily slaughter capacity, three plants worldwide, 3.4 million actual
- Smithfield Beef Group: $2.599 billion annual sales, 7,600-head daily
slaughter capacity, four plants worldwide, 1.9 million actual
-- Joe Roybal
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