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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 futures
- click here
for the report posted yesterday afternoon around 3:30 PM.
Okla Cash Grain:
Feeder Cattle Recap:
Slaughter Cattle Recap:
TCFA Feedlot Recap:
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Ron Hays, Senior Farm Director and Editor
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|Oklahoma's Latest Farm and Ranch News
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON
Friday, February 10, 2017
Public Radio Report on Beef Checkoff Features HSUS Advocates Attacking Handling of Funds
A reporter who works for public radio in Oklahoma posted a story yesterday rehashing information released in early January of the investigation that continues by Federal officials of the apparent embezzlement of 2.6 million dollars by the former Director of Accounting and Compliance for the Oklahoma Beef Council. We can tell you what we know- based on conversations at state and national cattle meetings we have been a part of in recent days.
In truth- there is very little new information in this situation since the coverage that was given by the Oklahoma Farm Report and others in early January. The Chairman of the Oklahoma Beef Council, Tom Fanning
, has given reports to fellow cattlemen at both the recent Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association Policy Meeting two weeks ago as well this past week in Nashville at the Cattle Industry Convention. Fanning said with the investigation still active- he and his board members could say little except that they are cooperating with state and federal officials and working hard to get money paid back to producers as restitution.
It appears that we are getting closer to federal criminal charges being filed- word has come that restitution has begun by the accused former employee- how much will ultimately be recovered remains to be seen.
In the report from the public radio reporter- there was an effort to tie previous complaints about how checkoff funds at the national level are handled by the National Cattlemen's Beef Association- the principle contractor to the Beef Board to carry out beef promotion, education and research efforts. NCBA- like all contractors with the Beef Board- work for the Beef Checkoff on a cost recovery basis and have an incredible amount of paperwork to show how they spent every single penny. There is a huge firewall between policy and checkoff spending within NCBA- and in recent years- the monitoring of that firewall is stricter than ever.
Bottom line- the embezzlement case is a tragedy of a person who was trusted for years by multiple Superiors and Producer Boards who allegedly stole money from the checkoff- the work to charge that person continues by federal officials.
This case has nothing to do with the false charges made in the report from public radio this week against the beef checkoff at the national level.
We write more about this- and you can hear some of our radio coverage on this topic from today that features comments from Kendall Frazier
of the NCBA on the firewall- click or tap here
to read and listen.
One final note- I am certain that the Beef Checkoff is the most complicated producer funded self help promotion program
out there. The layers of how the money is collected at the state level- then forwarded on to the national level and how it is invested by the Operating Committee and the relationship between the Beef Board and the Contractors makes you wonder how anything ever is accomplished. But- at each level- you have folks who work hard to make it work- and the result is that beef producers get a lot of bang for their buck- a study from a couple of years ago showed for each dollar put into the checkoff- a return of over $11 comes back to producers.
To me- that's a success story.
Farmers may be tightening their belts even more as the financial situation for rural America has slumped even deeper into an already lethargic state. A report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City found that farmland values and cash rents declined moderately in the fourth quarter of 2016.
Bankers across the seven-state Tenth District, responded the Fed's Agricultural Credit Survey, noting that persistent weakness in farm income continued to weigh on farmland values. On average, farm and ranch land values dropped as much as 7 percent, compared to this time last year. Cash rents for cropland fell up to 8 percent while ranchland cash rents fell 12 percent from the fourth quarter of 2015.
In addition to this, weaker credit conditions have also contributed to prompting bankers to adopt some risk prevention measures in response. For example, variable and fixed interest rates increased for all types of farm loans. More than 30 percent of bankers also reported an increase in collateral requirements, the largest share in survey history.
Oklahoma AgCredit serves rural Oklahoma communities and agriculture with loans and financial services. Providing loans for rural property, farm and ranch land, country homes, livestock, equipment and operating costs is all we do.
We are the state's largest agricultural lending cooperative, serving 60 Oklahoma Counties. To learn more about Oklahoma AgCredit, click here for our website or call 866-245-3633.
Little has changed over the last week in reference to the Drought Monitor, as nearly 80 percent of Oklahoma remains under severely dry conditions.
The areas affected the worst are centralized along the Red River between Durant and Hugo, as well as a patch of Extreme Drought (D3) in the northern part of LeFlore, much of Haskell and portions of Sequoyah Counties.
While the current drought ratings are down from the start of the year- helped by the recent moisture from last month - they stand in contrast to no drought or even abnormally dry ratings which were reported at early February of 2016.
Read more or review Oklahoma's State Climatologist Gary McManus'
Mesonet Ticker for more detail about fire danger, the prospects for rain in the near future and more by clicking or tapping here.
Steve Mercer, US Wheat Associates Vice President of Communications, authored an article in the most recent Wheat Letter acknowledging Mexico as "the" leader among international purchasers of US wheat, surpassing even Japan this marketing year. In this piece Mercer emphasizes the strong relationship between our two nations as tensions rise with the talk of renegotiations of NAFTA.
"Simply put, Mexico is one of the largest U.S. wheat buyers in the world, importing just under 3.0 million metric tons (MMT) on average going back many years. Mexico's U.S. wheat imports typically only fall just short of the volume Japan imports. Not this year, however. In the first 7 months of marketing year 2016/17 through Feb. 2, Mexico's flour millers have imported 2.4 MMT of U.S. wheat, which is more than any other country. That volume is up 5 percent over last year at the same time.
"As it does with all U.S. wheat importing customers, USW focuses on helping Mexico's buyers, millers and food processors solve problems or increase their business opportunities with U.S. wheat classes. This effort, supported by wheat farmers and the partnership with USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service, has fostered a productive relationship that has endured for decades through many challenges. More than 22 years of duty free access to the Mexican market under the North American Free Trade Agreement certainly helped build the relationship."
Mercer goes on to predict that NAFTA will most likely be negotiated in the near future and agrees that certain elements of the treaty warrant re-examination. However, he pledges to the loyal trading partner that no matter the outcome of these eventual discussions, USW will continue to serve and accommodate Mexico's milling industry as any good neighbor would.
Read the complete article for Mercer's full explanation of his opinions on Mexico as a partner in trade and potential NAFTA renegotiations, by clicking here.
|Growing Demand in Asia Drives US Beef Exports Beyond Expectations in 2016 - But Will We Be Able to Keep It Up?
I spoke with Phil Seng, president of the US Meat Export Federation, last week at the NCBA convention in Nashville, and according to him - red meat exports from the US performed exceptionally well, surprising to him even, this past year. The reason he credits with driving these figures up and up is a global push for high protein diets, especially in older demographics. And beef has been labeled a particularly important part of a balanced diet for our seniors. In fact, he says in Japan, the government has more or less endorsed a "beefier" diet.
Seng says many inroads have been made lately with developing markets such as Korea, where exports into that country have surpassed Australia's, making the US the Asian nation's top beef supplier. Likewise, he says US beef continues to pour into countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region, including some markets that were thought to be tapped out.
"Just because a market is developed doesn't mean it doesn't continue developing," retorts Seng. "We're seeing all kinds of dynamics in Japan and I think that the changing nature of food consumption, especially meat consumption is allowing for more of it to come in."
However, Seng advocates that free trade agreements must be negotiated if this kind of success is to continue. He warns that isolation from protectionist policies could damage the progress that has been made to access these international markets and prohibit accessing new ones.
Listen to Seng talk more about beef export performance last year and what opportunities and challenges we're faced with this year to keep up the momentum, on yesterday's Beef Buzz - click here
We are happy to have the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association as a part of our great lineup of email sponsors. They do a tremendous job of representing cattle producers at the state capitol as well as in our nation's capitol. They seek to educate OCA members on the latest production techniques for maximum profitability and to communicate with the public on issues of importance to the beef industry. Click here for their website to learn more about the OCA.
|Dr. Kim Anderson Has Some Good News for Wheat Producers From USDA and the Grain Markets
"I think there's good news in the market," begins OSU's Dr. Kim Anderson in this week's visit with Lyndall Stout on OETA's SUNUP . "We did recover most of our losses that we saw two or three weeks ago."
But that's just the tip of the iceberg. According to Anderson, the basis for wheat prices went up about $0.09 this past week and has the potential to run up another $0.20.
What's even more exciting though is his prediction for wheat prices come harvest, not just this year, but next as well. He
says that if everything falls into place as he see's it, based off numbers in the yesterday's Supply and Demand report from the USDA - producers could expect to see wheat sell on a national average of about $4.75. He says Oklahoma's average may run about a half dollar less than that. Looking at the following year, though he contends that price may reach up as high as $5.00.
This optimistic outlook seems to have been maintained from his appearance on last week's episode where he shared an acquainted analyst's prediction that farmers would be lucky to break $4.00 for their wheat.
You can watch their visit tomorrow or Sunday on SUNUP- but you can hear Kim's comments right now and read more by clicking here.
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The Future of Sustainable Beef, is the theme for the sixth annual Texoma Cattlemen's Conference being hosted by the Noble Foundation later this month. Hugh Aljoe, Noble's producer relations manager, says this year's conference will focus on the questions surrounding sustainably produced beef cattle.
"The public's perception - they want to feel confident with our food supply," he said. "For us as cattle producers, out product is beef. The key thing that we want to be able to do is communicate that much of what our producers are already doing is sustainable."
A lot of the things considered to be sustainable practices, are in fact already being done on many farms. He says the key is just documenting what you do and then sharing with the public.
The event will feature several speakers with leadership positions within practically each segment of the industry from production to consumption, that will explain what sustainability means to each of them regarding ethically sourced food for the consumer, in their respective fields and disciplines.
I'll be there to moderate discussions and would love to see you there. For more information about the conference and how to register for it, check out the story on our website by clicking here
CropLife America commended Ohio Republican Congressman Bob Gibbs
for introducing the Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act of 2017 amending the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act and the Federal Water Pollution Control Act. The bill
provides clarification on the use and application of pesticides "in or near navigable waters as well as for other purposes." This act will reverse a 2009 federal court decision in the National Cotton Council v EPA lawsuit which directed the U.S. Environmental Agency (EPA) to require permits from applicators who spray over "navigable waters" as defined in the Clean Water Act.
"We applaud Congressman Gibbs for introducing this legislation which will make pest control tools more accessible to farmers," stated Jay Vroom
, president and CEO of CLA. "Preventing and removing redundant regulations for pesticide technology is vitally important for the protection of our national food supply. Bi-partisan support of this bill, as with similar bills introduced by the House and Senate for the last four congressional sessions, shows a national commitment to advancing technology, helping those in agriculture grow food more efficiently."
Congressman Gibbs followed the introduction of his bill with a statement saying that, "Bureaucratic red tape is making it more difficult and costly for farmers to responsibly protect their crops."
for the complete release by CropLife America on Congressman Gibbs recent legislative action.
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