From: Ron Hays [] on behalf of Ron Hays []
Sent: Wednesday, February 03, 2016 6:05 AM
To: Hays, Ron
Subject: Oklahoma's Farm News Update

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We invite you to listen to us on great radio stations across the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network weekdays- if you missed this morning's Farm News - or you are in an area where you can't hear it- click here for this morning's Farm news from Ron Hays on RON.
Big Iron  
Let's Check the Markets!  
Today's First Look:
mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
Each afternoon we are posting a recap of that day's markets as analyzed by Justin Lewis of KIS futuresclick here for the report posted yesterday afternoon around 3:30 PM.
Okla Cash Grain:  
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- as reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture.
Futures Wrap:  
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Network with Leslie Smith and Tom Leffler- analyzing the Futures Markets from the previous Day.
Feeder Cattle Recap:  
The National Daily Feeder & Stocker Cattle Summary- as prepared by USDA.
Slaughter Cattle Recap: 
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by the USDA.
TCFA Feedlot Recap:  
Finally, here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.

Our Oklahoma Farm Report Team!!!!
Ron Hays, Senior Editor and Writer
Pam Arterburn, Calendar and Template Manager
Dave Lanning, Markets and Production
Leslie Smith, Editor and Contributor

Oklahoma's Latest Farm and Ranch News

Presented by

Okla Farm Bureau  
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON   
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
Howdy Neighbors! 

Here is your daily Oklahoma farm and ranch news update. 
FirstHollowStemFeatured Story:
Tool Available to Help Wheat Producers Make First Hollow Stem Decision

With February already here, we are getting closer to that "window" of time when wheat producers who have cattle grazing their wheat fields need to decide if they are going to graze out or go for grain harvest.

Wheat producers in Oklahoma have historically circled March 15 on their calendars to remember to pull cattle from the fields. Waiting much longer than that would result in a drastic decrease in yield. And, many years, mid March may be too late in pulling those cattle from wheat fields destined to see a combine in them come June.

Research has shown that First Hollow Stem, a particular growth stage in winter wheat, is the optimal time to pull cattle off wheat to prevent yield loss. Using Mesonet weather and soil data, as well as FHS observations from 1995-2012, researchers at Oklahoma State University have developed a tool for producers to consult when deciding how long to leave cattle on their wheat fields.

"Grazing too long will reduce wheat yields, but removing cattle too early will reduce the profit potential of the stocker cattle enterprise," said Dr. Jeff Edwards, Head of the Plant and Soil Science Department at OSU. "Finding the correct balance between these two factors has been the subject of investigation for decades."

Available here on the Mesonet website, the FHS Advisor is located in the Agriculture section, under both the "Crop/Wheat" and "Livestock/Cattle" tabs. A guide on how to use the Advisor is located in the "Learn More" section of the website.

If we get mild temperatures in the next few weeks, wheat will start growing and will be edging close to that First Hollow Stem stage of development. Click here to read more about the First Hollow Stem calculator on the Oklahoma Mesonet- and prepare to check your fields to pull those cattle on a timely basis.
Sponsor Spotlight
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The folks at Oklahoma AgCredit are all about financing Oklahoma's farming and ranching operations, rural real estate, agribusinesses and country homes.  To learn more about Oklahoma AgCredit, click here for their brand new website.

CruzSenator Cruz Victory in Iowa Does Not Mean Ethanol Industry on its "Last Legs" 

Monday night's win of the Iowa caucuses by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) has spawned a narrative that presidential candidates campaigning in the state no longer have to express support for the domestic ethanol industry or the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Renewable Fuels Association President and CEO Bob Dinneen issued the following statement pushing back against that narrative by disputing the notion that ethanol is no longer an important factor in determining who is chosen as the victor in Iowa.

"The narrative coming out after last night's Iowa caucus that the domestic ethanol industry is somehow on the ropes is false," said Dinneen. "Many people seem to have forgotten that, in the run-up to last night's caucus vote, though Sen. Cruz stated he was opposed to the RFS he also expressed support for ethanol as a fuel. In fact the senator has discussed the need to provide American consumers better access to ethanol fuels like E25 or E30, stating that they could prove to be quite popular with American consumers who are increasingly concerned about fuel economy. The senator also called ethanol an effective additive because it increases octane and decreases harmful tailpipe emissions. That doesn't sound like someone to me who is writing off the domestic ethanol industry. That sounds to me like someone who is just being true to his no-mandates of any kind philosophy.

"Moreover, pundits anxious to write off ethanol's potential currency in Iowa should note that more than 85 percent of the votes cast in Iowa last night were in support of candidates who continue to champion the RFS."

The advocacy group America's Renewable Future also is spinning after the vote in Iowa- and they are offering a similar story to the Bob Dinneen statement- click here to read their comments in the aftermath of the Iowa vote.

ONE OTHER POST IOWA OBSERVATION- Do not expect agriculture to be prominent from this point forward in the Presidential Primary process- it will be mentioned in passing, if at all, in the days to come.
BlachCattleFax's Randy Blach Explains the Market Volatility of 2015

It's easy to forget here in the early days of 2016 that cattle prices were much higher in the first few months of 2015, before tumbling during the second half of this past year. The CEO of Cattlefax, Randy Blach, reminded me in a conversation that we had in San Diego that the year 2015, at least when it comes to the cattle market, was two different stories.

Blach said there was the fed cattle market that averaged $160 in the first half of 2015 and then fed prices averaged $135 in the second half of the year.   In looking at the nearly $25 hundred weight move in average prices through the year, he said there was a lot going on with the global economic slowdown, the drop in international beef demand and the strong U.S. dollar.

"Bottom-line is we ended up with four and half billion more pounds of protein to absorb in the U.S. marketplace than we had one year ago," Blach said. "The single largest one year change in the history of our business."

I featured Blach on the Beef Buzz, as heard on great radio stations across the region. Click or tap here to listen to today's Beef Buzz, which is also available on our website and via Podcast subscription. .

HouseAgHouse Agriculture Committee Approves Budget Views and Estimates Letter

The House Committee on Agriculture Tuesday sent its Budget Views and Estimates letter for fiscal year 2017 to the House Budget Committee.

In the letter, Committee members requested that the Budget Committee "give careful consideration to the significant contributions toward deficit reduction already made by the Committee on Agriculture, the substantial reforms these savings entailed, the troubled economic conditions facing farm country that are exacerbated by regulatory burdens and trade and tax uncertainties, as well as our Committee's work ahead, when determining from which congressional committees and mission areas any future budget savings should come."

In the letter, Committee members also noted the "almost $5 billion that agricultural policies have been sequestered since fiscal year 2013, accounting for a disproportionate 30 percent of the non-defense, non-Medicare mandatory sequester last year" and that "the 2014 Farm Bill reforms are achieving far greater savings than would have been realized had the status quo under the previous farm bill been maintained."

Click here for more information from the business meeting, including the archived webcast.

Sponsor Spotlight
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FarmAssure jumped in to successfully fill a void in Oklahoma, especially with their country home program.  Click here 
for more information about FarmAssure or call 800-815-7590. You'll be glad you did.

HoustonJennifer Houston Commends Beef Checkoff's Unique Partnership and Ability to Change With Times

Jennifer Houston has worn multiple hats for the nation's beef producers. She has served as chair for the Federation of State Beef Councils, an organization that represents 42 of the state qualified beef councils. Each one of the state beef councils is doing checkoff work in their individual state with 50 cents from the $1 per head that collected from each animal that is sold. At the national level, the Federation of State Beef Councils and the Cattlemen's Beef Board form the operating committee to fund national projects. She calls this a unique partnership between the states and the national level of the nation's beef checkoff.

"We as a federation want to provide again that state and national continuity that gives them a place to invest and a place to make their efforts be more effective," Houston said.

One challenge the beef checkoff has faced has been the drop in available funding. The buying power of the beef checkoff has dwindled since its inception in 1986. Houston said initially the checkoff used a shotgun approach in buying adverting for radio, television and print to put the message out to as many people as possible. As checkoff funds have declined with a shrinking national cattle herd, the checkoff moved to a rifle approach. She said today the beef checkoff is using a laser approach to reach beef consumers through digital advertising efforts.

I interviewed Houston at the Cattle Industry Convention last week in San Diego. Click or tap here to listen to the full interview.  After our visit, Jennifer was nominated and will serve in a new role this coming year- the Chairman of the Policy Division of the NCBA- moving over from the Federation Division.

Want to Have the Latest Energy News Delivered to Your Inbox Daily?

Award winning broadcast journalist Jerry Bohnen has spent years learning and understanding how to cover the energy business here in the southern plains- Click here to subscribe to his daily update of top Energy News.

DemocratsHouse Democrats Join Farm Bureau in Opposing School Consolidation, Property Tax Hikes

Democrats in the Oklahoma House of Representatives announced Tuesday that they "stand with the Oklahoma Farm Bureau" on the issues of property taxes and rural school consolidation, and called on their Republican colleagues to join them.

Farm Bureau President Tom Buchanan issued a statement in which he took exception to Governor Fallin's proposals to consolidate rural dependent schools and to allow building funds, which are derived from ad valorem taxes, to defray operational expenses.  

Using property taxes to pay operational expenses "would shift the tax burden for educational support from a state tax base to local property owners, such as Oklahoma farmers and ranchers," said House Minority Leader Scott Inman. And consolidating rural schools with larger independent schools "would spell the death of many small Oklahoma communities," the Del City Democrat said.

"We urge House Republicans to publicly join us in this effort," Inman said. "This isn't a partisan political issue. This affects all taxpayers and property owners in Oklahoma."

Click here to read more from the House Democrats that intend to stand up and defend our rural communities.

BigIronThis N That - Syngenta Bought by the Chinese,  Big Iron Wednesday and
the Power of Twitter  

We are waking up to news this morning that Syngenta's Board has agreed  to a $43 billion takeover agreement with ChemChina. The board of directors of Syngenta considers that the proposed transaction respects the interests of all stakeholders and is unanimously recommending the offer to shareholders.

ChemChina reportedly offered a sweeter deal to Syngenta than Monsanto, by offering the $43 billion in cash. Monsanto offered a similar $43 billion takeover in August, but the proposal included cash and a portion of its own shares. Syngenta rejected Monsanto's repeated attempt at the displeasure of Syngenta's shareholders.

Syngenta's existing management will continue to run the company.  After closing, a 10 member board of directors will be chaired by Ren Jianxin, chairman of ChemChina, and will include four of the existing Syngenta board members.  ChemChina is committed to maintaining the highest governance standards with a view to an IPO of the business in the years to come.

Feedstuffs has details in a story this am- click here to take a look.

It's Wednesday- and that means the Big Iron folks will be busy closing out this week's auction items - all 272 items consigned.  Bidding will start at 10 AM central time.                

Click Here for the complete rundown of what is being sold on this no reserve online sale this week.
If you'd like more information on buying and selling with Big Iron, call District Manager Mike Wolfe at 580-320-2718 and he can give you the full scoop.  You can also reach Mike via email by clicking or tapping here.

Social media continues to be a part of our strategy of reaching out to the farm and ranch community and beyond with the latest agricultural information that you need to know.

I was reminded over this past weekend how quickly and widely a medium like Twitter can spread information.  On Saturday, we were flying home from San Diego- I was looking at some of the latest Tweets of the morning and saw the story breaking of a major fire at the Bluegrass Stockyards in Lexington, Ky. 

I mentioned Monday in the email that I had ties back to that market, as it was one of two in that city that my Dad and I used to sell livestock- hogs and cattle. At one time, it was one of the largest weekly cattle auctions east of the Mississippi.

Well, we posted a Tweet about the fire and the fact that it was a significant loss as a cattle market- and that tweet caught fire itself.  As of this morning, it has been retweeted around the country and beyond 116 times and I have engaged in several conversations with folks about the fire and the market.

I enjoy Twitter- it helps us offer an ongoing flow of ag information that we have for folks- and it's a great place to keep tabs on what is going on- in agriculture, politics, sports and life.

You can follow me on Twitter- and join the fun- our Twitter handle is Ron_on_RON. 

Our thanks to Midwest Farms Shows, P & K Equipment,  American Farmers & Ranchers, Stillwater Milling Company, Oklahoma AgCreditthe Oklahoma Cattlemens Association, Pioneer Cellular, Farm Assure and  KIS Futures for their support of our daily Farm News Update. For your convenience, we have our sponsors' websites linked here- just click on their name to jump to their website- check their sites out and let these folks know you appreciate the support of this daily email, as their sponsorship helps us keep this arriving in your inbox on a regular basis- at NO Charge!



We also invite you to check out our website at the link below to check out an archive of these daily emails, audio reports and top farm news story links from around the globe.   

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