From:                              Ron Hays <> on behalf of Ron Hays <>

Sent:                               Thursday, March 17, 2016 7:17 AM

To:                                   Arterburn, Pam

Subject:                          Oklahoma's Farm News Update




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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 or tap here for the report posted Wednesday afternoon around 3:30 PM.



Okla Cash Grain:  

Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- as reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture for Wednesday 3/16/16.



Futures Wrap:  

Our Wednesday Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Network with 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.





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Ron Hays, Senior Editor and Writer


Pam Arterburn, Calendar and Template Manager


Dave Lanning, Markets and Production


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Your Update from Ron Hays of RON   

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Wear Green!!!- It's Saint Paddy's Day! 



Howdy Neighbors! 

Here is your daily Oklahoma farm and ranch news update. 

ClotureFailFeatured Story:

Cloture Vote Fails on Biotech Labeling Bill- Negotiations Continue to Preempt Vermont Law on Mandatory Labeling



A voluntary GMO labeling bill failed to receive enough votes Wednesday to clear a procedural hurdle. The Senate voted 48 to 49 against the voluntary labeling proposal by Senate Agriculture Chair Pat Roberts. The Kansas Republican was unable to reach a compromise with his committee's top Democrat, Debbie Stabenow, who led the opposition. The bill needed 60 votes to move forward.

Before the vote, Stabenow said negotiations would continue, and that she hoped a deal could be wrapped by the end of this week. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell voted against the cloture motion, which will allow him to bring up the legislation later should an agreement be reached. Presidential candidates, Senators Ted Cruz and Bernie Sanders, along with now former candidate Marco Rubio, were not present for the vote.

Chuck Conner, the president of the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives,told  Agri-Pulse he's optimistic the senators can reach a compromise.

The bill's supporters were a dozen votes short yesterday of getting the 60 votes necessary to advance the legislation on the Senate floor.  But Conner, a former deputy agriculture secretary and a former chief of staff for the Senate Agriculture Committee, says there are many more Democrats who want to support the bill than was apparent in yesterday's vote. Just three Democrats supported the cloture motion. Conner says other Democrats saw no need to vote for the motion when the negotiations on the bill were still ongoing.


You may recall we talked a few days ago about something that Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack has called "mandatory disclosure" and some variation of that is a possible solution- a combination of a phone hotline that consumers could call to learn more about the ingredients are as well as a quick code that could push consumers to a website where ingredient details could be seen. Republicans want this to start as voluntary- and if not enough of the industry has done it within two or three years- then it becomes mandatory- Democrats want anything done as mandatory as of yesterday.

The unknowns- what will satisfy Debbie Stabenow, top Democrat on the Senate Committee- if she's happy- she probably brings the votes to pass it- How many dollars the Organic community have stuffed into her pocket to make her ignore science and major on the Consumers Right to Know and How Soon a Deal Might be Cut- now it is likely to happen after the Easter Recess- pushing it closer all the time to the July first implementation of the Vermont law demanding every food label detail whether GMOs are in that can or package.



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ReactGMOFarm Bureau Angry at Senators Voting Against Roberts Bill- Pro Label Forces Rejoice Over DARK Act Defeat 

Zippy Duvall, new President of the American Farm Bureau, appears to be disgusted with the Democrats that have refused to vote for the deal offered by Senator Pat Roberts on Biotech Labeling- Here's his full statement released yesterday morning:

"It is inexcusable that today's Senate vote on a voluntary federal GMO labeling bill that preempts a damaging patchwork of state measures fell short. While we appreciate Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell scheduling this floor vote today, we will continue our fight for this vital piece of legislation, along with Senate Ag Committee Chairman Pat Roberts and others, to secure a law that supports consumers, America's farmers and ranchers and our nation's system of affordable, productive agriculture.

"To say we are angry with those senators who abandoned farmers and ranchers and turned their backs on rural America on this vote is an understatement. Their votes opposing this measure ignored science, threw our nation's food system into disarray and undermined the public's understanding of the many benefits of biotechnology in feeding a growing and hungry population. We remain hopeful they will have a chance at redemption by correcting this situation that will otherwise lead to increased food costs for consumers and stifle agricultural innovation, which remains a strength of our nation. We must not let anyone forget that rural America and our farmers and ranchers do matter."

Chairman of the House Ag Committee, Mike Conaway of Texas, was also very unhappy- he did not call out Debbie Stabenow by name- but rather by title- as one that was to blame for the breakdown of the process.

Conaway says that, in effect, Senator Pat Roberts and those supporting him are doing the right thing while they are being impeded by an  "uncompromising and inflexible group of minority party Senators."

He adds "These Senators have refused to move from their position calling for a mandatory warning label for products of biotechnology. They have chosen to side with activists who have publicly acknowledged their objective is to stigmatize a safe and valuable tool for America's farmers and ranchers."

And he points the finger of blame at Senator Stabenow and says she needs to help fix this- "I call on the Senate Agriculture Committee's Ranking Member to fulfill her responsibility by standing up for America's farmers and ranchers."

Conaway's Full Statement is available here.

Now, not everyone is unhappy with the outcome- there are lots of folks who call the Roberts proposal the DARK act- standing for "Denying Americans the Right to Know" act.  Chef Tom Colicchio is part of the anti- GMO faction that have vowed to work to get food products labeled as GMO or not- then organize consumers to boycott any product with GMOs in them.

In a statement from the group called Food Policy Action, the Chef stated "Today's vote marked an important milestone for the more than 90% of Americans who want GMOs to be labeled. I am hopeful that the Senate will now work to craft a bipartisan mandatory on-pack GMO labeling bill that doesn't demonize science and gives consumers the information they demand."


TomCoonDean Tom Coon Says OSU is Working to Attract the Brightest and the Best Young People at OYE to Stillwater

Wednesday was OSU Day at OYE- and the Dean of the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Oklahoma State University, Dr. Tom Coon, was right in the middle of the action as students from all across Oklahoma stopped by and got information about some of the key Departments in the College of Ag- including Animal Science, Ag Communications and Leadership, Ag Economics and more.

As the day was winding down, Dean Coon spent a few minutes with us talking about the day's events and about the why and how Oklahoma State supports the Oklahoma Youth Expo.

You can read more from our conversation with Dean Coon and hear that conversation as well- just click or tap here.


OYEPicturesThe OYE in Pictures- and Still to Come: the Grand Drive Today and Sale of Champs Tomorrow


Over the last three years- we have been fortunate to have had a Ag Communications student from OSU help us a couple of days at the Oklahoma Youth Expo- usually helping us by taking pictures for our FLICKR album. 

That has been the case here in 2016 once again- this year, Macy Griswold is doing a great job in helping us chronicle the OYE2016 with her photographic talents- and here's a good example of her work in the hog barn on Tuesday:

Macy captured the concentration of Barrow Judge Andy Rash checking out this Spot barrow- and you can see all of her work- plus my photos as well in our Flickr Album that is available here.

All of our coverage on radio, the web, this email and even Flickr is being made possible by ITC, Your Energy Superhighway- click here to learn more about their efforts to serve the Great Plains.

Ahead- all four species are showing today in the market animal division- and the Scholarship Presentations and Grand Champion Drives are coming late this afternoon in the State Fair Arena. Click here for the schedule.

And, don't forget the Sale of Champions will be happening tomorrow afternoon- it starts at 4:00 PM.


Sponsor Spotlight



We are pleased to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as a regular sponsor of our daily update. On both the state and national levels, full-time staff members serve as a "watchdog" for family agriculture producers, mutual insurance company members and life company members.

Click here to go to their AFR website to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!



MBAMBA- the Continuing Strategy to Engage the Consumer in Conversations About Beef

The Masters in Beef Advocacy Program sprang from a need that beef industry leaders saw- the need to help cattle producers have the tools to be able to talk with consumers about today's Beef Industry. The checkoff-funded MBA program is a self-directed online training program designed to equip beef producers and industry allies with the information they need to be everyday advocates for the beef industry. The manager of the MBA program since its inception has been Daren Williams, and we talked with Williams about where the MBA program is here in 2016 and where he sees it going.

Williams told us "We launched MBA in 2009, and we had a lofty goal of 50 graduates for that first year- we ended up with over a thousand- we've had about a thousand graduates each year ever since and we are actually on a record pace for 2016- we have already eclipsed over a thousand graduates"(fiscal year 2016 which began back last October first). He the numbers simply translates into "more people equipped on the ground to engage the consumer in conversations about beef."

Click or tap here for our Beef Buzz with Daren Williams about MBA and where the program stands in its 8th year.


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.


KirkpatrickKirkpatrick Foundation Weighs in With Their View of Animal Welfare in Oklahoma


The Kirkpatrick Foundation has unveiled the fruits of a three-year project on the state of animal wellbeing as they see it in Oklahoma, The Oklahoma Animal Study. More than 1,200 copies of the study are being mailed to policy makers, thought leaders, media, and stakeholders this week. The study is also available online. Co-authored by Kristy Wicker and Manda Overturf Shank, the report details findings on the current status, laws, regulation, care and general wellbeing of companion animals, livestock and farm animals, horses, wildlife, exotic animals, and laboratory animals in the state. The goal of The Oklahoma Animal Study is to provide a summary of the current state of animals in Oklahoma with recommendations based on the findings toward improvement in current conditions.

Three of their twelve recommendations that have come out of this study involve animal agriculture- they inlcude:

"Discourage the expansion of Concentrated Animal Feedings Operations and educate the public about their effects on human health, animal welfare, and the environment.

"Encourage and support sustainable and humane agricultural practices and the use of local food distribution cooperatives and humane labeling systems.

"Advocate for the use of pain alleviation in farm-animal procedures such as castration, branding, and dehorning. Prohibit tail docking."

More on this study is available here.


ThisNThatThis N That- Cattle on Feed Preview and  GMO Science Facts 

Friday afternoon, USDA will issue their next Cattle on Feed Report- and Allendale has provided us with their pre report estimates on what they believe USDA will be saying about cattle numbers at 2:00 PM central time tomorrow:

"February Placements are expected to be 14.2% higher than last year at 1.771 million head. There was one more weekday in February 2016 vs. 2015. This was also compared against a small February 2015 number. USDA's cattle feeding margins improved slightly from a $192 per head loss on a very light 1,250 lb. animal to now a $180 loss. This would be fifteen months in a row of losses. Corn averaged $3.46 1/2 in Western Kansas in February ($3.46 in January, $3.92 in February 2015). February placements supply the July through October slaughter period.

"Allendale anticipates a Marketing total 4.4% larger than February 2015 at 1.583 million. This was the largest February marketing in three years. There was one more weekday in February 2016 vs. the previous year which artificially added to the number by 5.1%.

"Total Cattle on Feed as of March 1 is 1.5% larger than last year at 10.848 million. That is an increase over the February 1 total that was unchanged with one year ago."


For those that are frustrated with the GMO labeling scene- I have a website that I ran across yesterday that you may find useful in gaining some scientific talking points about the value of GMOs in today's food production systems- and how their safety record is a like a train that has already left the station- simply put, the safety of GMOs in the food supply is very well documented.

Click here for "Your One Stop Shop for GMO Science Facts."

And Enjoy!



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