Oklahoma's Latest Farm
And Ranch News

Friday, February 24, 2023

Howdy Neighbors!

Here is your daily Oklahoma farm and ranch news update. 


  • Exceptional and Extreme Drought Categories Decline This Week, While Remaining Categories Improve

  • OALP International Experience Leaves Members with New Outlook on Agriculture

  • Megan Williams with KC Fed Explains Why Higher Interest Rates Should Eventually Boost Economy

  • Farm Journal Names Jimmy Emmons Senior Vice President of Climate-Smart Programs

  • NCBA’s Kent Bacus Says it is time for U.S. Beef Trade to Get Back in the Game

  • Kim Anderson Talks Estimates of More Planted Wheat, Corn, Soybeans, and Less Cotton

  • Dairy MAX: Preparing for the Unpredictable

  • More Stories for Your Weekend Reading

Exceptional and Extreme Drought Categories Decline This Week, While Remaining Categories Improve

After drought conditions showed improvement in each category last week, this week’s Oklahoma drought monitor shows slight increases in the exceptional drought and extreme drought categories. As for the other three categories of drought, those continue to show improvement.

Exceptional drought increased slightly from last week’s 8.07 percent to 8.86 percent this week.

Extreme drought or worse has also increased just slightly from last week’s 36.58 percent to this week’s 36.64 percent.

Severe drought or worse is now at 56.47, down over 10 percentage points from last week’s percentage of 66.94.

Moderate drought or worse is now at 74.65 percent, down from last week’s 80.07 percent.

Abnormally dry or worse conditions are now at 80.78 percent, down from last week’s 85.03 percent.

According to the 6-to-10-day precipitation outlook map, the majority of the state, with the exception of the southern border, is leaning above a 33 to 40 percent chance of precipitation through March 4. As for that southern border, that part of the state is standing at a near-normal percent chance of precipitation through March 4.

To view this week's Oklahoma drought numbers, click the Oklahoma Drought Map above the story.

Click here to read a national drought summary and see this week's charts
Sponsor Spotlight

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OALP International Experience Leaves Members with New Outlook on Agriculture and Different Ways of Life

As Class XX of the Oklahoma Ag Leadership Program finishes up their international travels, I got the chance to sit down and visit with OALP member, Meg Stangl of Okarche, Oklahoma, about the experience.

“The thing that stuck out in my mind more than anything probably is the community sense in the Kibbutz- the farming communities that we have been able to visit,” Stangl said. “All the different enterprises that they have found that succeed for their Kibbutz, and then the technology they have in all of those communities have just blown me away.”

The group has visited several Kibbutz, where members of those communities are working together for the benefit of everyone in the Kibbutz as a whole. Each Kibbutz is different, Stangl added, with a different niche and way to thrive- many of those using innovative technologies.

“Some of them did start before Israel was actually a country in ’48, but some of them, I just am amazed of what they have accomplished in that short time,” Stangl said.

Stangl said it was interesting seeing farming on smaller acreages.

“It is a very small country, so they don’t have very much, but they can do so much with the little amount they are given and the variety of the vegetables, the fruits, and the crops to grow for their animals,” Stangl said.

Click here to read more and listen to Megan Stangl talk about the OALP Class XX Israel trip

Megan Williams with Kansas City Fed Explains Why Higher Interest Rates Should Eventually Boost Economy

At the 118th American Farmers and Ranchers state convention in Norman, Oklahoma, Farm Director, KC Sheperd had the chance to visit with Megan Williams, Associate Economist and Manager in the Regional Affairs department at the Kansas City Fed’s Oklahoma City Branch office. Sheperd and Williams talk about higher interest rates and Oklahoma’s economy.

The economy is continuing to grow at a good rate, Williams said, but unfortunately, inflation still remains too high. The labor force participation rate is lower than it was before the pandemic, Williams said, so communities are still having trouble gaining back individuals who left the workforce during the pandemic.

“When businesses have trouble attracting workers, they will have to start to increase wages to try to attract those workers,” Williams said. “Once that happens, businesses are paying more for workers, then they will have to look at their own balance sheets and increase their prices to the consumers.”

Wage inflation growth is an issue, Williams said, because once those wages go up, it is difficult to bring them back down. Some businesses have turned to automation in the place of workers for jobs, she added.

“Everything has pretty much gone up, and definitely impacts the average consumer,” Williams said.

Click here to read more and listen to Megan Williams about higher interest rates and Oklahoma’s economy
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For our farmers who have either- always have had cotton on their farms- or those who have more recently have added the fiber crop to their operations- we have a daily report heard on several of our Radio Stations- It's Called Cotton Talk!

Click on the Button below to listen to our most recent report
Click here for our Latest Cotton Talk- Hosted by KC Sheperd

Farm Journal Names Jimmy Emmons Senior Vice President of Climate-Smart Programs

Farm Journal’s Trust In Food™ is proud to welcome Jimmy Emmons as senior vice president of climate-smart programs. Emmons will lead Trust In Food’s Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities Connected Ag Project, America’s Conservation Ag Movement and Trust In Beef, coalition-driven conservation programs developed to accelerate the adoption of conservation agriculture at scale.

Jimmy and his wife, Ginger, own and operate Emmons Farm in Leedey, Okla., where they manage 2,000 acres and 300 head of cattle in an integrated row-crop and livestock operation that optimizes water resources, reduces erosion and improves organic material in the soils. He is a public speaker, educator, mentor and advocate for conservation management practices to improve producers’ resiliency to weather, operational efficiency and profitability.

“Climate-smart agriculture puts producers at the center of decision-making because each management practice addresses specific goals for each unique operation,” Emmons says. “Farm Journal has a nearly 150-year history of serving farmers, and they bring a farmer-first perspective necessary to usher in the next wave of adoption that will make American farmers and ranchers more productive and profitable.”

Emmons most recently served as coordinator for mentoring for the Oklahoma Conservation Commission. Prior to that, he was regional coordinator for USDA’s Farm Production and Conservation, where he supported operational and business functions across the Farm Service Agency (FSA), Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and Risk Management Agency (RMA). He has also served as president of the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts and led fundraising for the National Young Farmers Education Association.

Click here to read more about Jimmy Emmons being named Senior Vice President of Climate-Smart Programs

We invite you to listen to us on great radio stations across the region on the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network weekdays-

if you missed this morning's Farm News - or you are in an area where you can't hear it- click below for this morning's Farm news from Ron Hays and KC Sheperd on RON.
Click to Listen to Our Morning Ag News from RON
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Sponsor Spotlight

The Oklahoma Agriculture Mediation Program knows this is a hard time for farmers and ranchers. We want you to know we are still open, and we are still here for you. The Ag Mediation program is a free service that provides mediation to agriculture producers who may need help with ag-related disputes.

At Oklahoma Ag Mediation, we have been helping people in agriculture resolve conflicts since 1987. We know firsthand about working together to resolve conflicts, so you don’t have to go through the court systems. Let our professional mediators help you. Mediation is allowed for lease issues, farmer/neighbor disputes, family farm transitions, and more. These services are available at no cost for Oklahoma farmers and ranchers in all 77 counties. For more information, you can go to ok.gov/mediation, or give us a call at 800 248 5465.

NCBA’s Kent Bacus Says it is time for U.S. Beef Trade to Get Back in the Game

At the 2023 Cattle Industry Convention, I had the chance to visit with the Executive Director of Government Affairs at National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Kent Bacus, about the state of U.S. beef trade deals.

The 2023 Cattle Industry Convention coverage is being powered by Performance Ranch, a part of Zoetis, and by Farm Data Services located in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

Regarding any updates in trade deals, Bacus said the biggest issue recently has been resolving the Japan beef quota issue.

“That was truly something that we were thankful for the Biden administration engaging on in securing that,” Bacus said. “Other than that, there hasn’t been a lot of progress on a lot of other issues.”

With some good players such as Alexis Taylor, who was confirmed to serve Under Secretary of Agriculture for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs and Chief Agricultural Negotiator Doug McKalip, Bacus said he is expecting great things to come.

“It is good to have people at the table, but we have got to get in the game,” Bacus said.

Getting back into robust comprehensive trade, Bacus said, will be a challenge with some new members of congress who have campaigned on anti-trade agendas.

“You have got to find a balance there,” Bacus said. “You have got to find the people who understand and have experienced the real benefits of trade. For us in the industry, exports account for about 450 bucks per head, so there is no denying that we have been a significant beneficiary of aggressive trade policies over the last few years. We have to reengage. We have to open new markets; we have to secure new markets.”

Click here to read more and listen to Kent Bacus talk about the U.S. beef trade

Kim Anderson Talks Estimates of More Planted Wheat, Corn, Soybeans, and Less Cotton

This Week on SUNUP is Oklahoma State University Extension grain market economist Kim Anderson. During this week’s edition, Anderson talks about planted acreage estimates and the grain markets.

The big talk in the markets this week, Anderson said, is the war in Russia and Ukraine.

There are export agreements coming up in March, Anderson said, and Ukraine is asking for a one-year extension.

“There has been quite a bit in the market about China assisting Russia in the war,” Anderson said. “It is unknown what they are going to do and the talk is they are toying with giving Russia additional support for the war.”

Regarding the pre-release numbers for the USDA Agricultural Outlook Forum from market analysts, Anderson said the analysts estimated the total wheat planted acreage at 48.5 million acres, which is up 2.8 million acres from last year.

Corn and soybean acreage is also estimated to be up from last year, Anderson said, and cotton acreage is lower.

“Wheat ending stocks is expected to increase at 650 million bushels compared to 568 this year, up 82 million,” Anderson said.

Click here to listen to Kim Anderson talk grain markets and see the linup for this week's SUNUP

Dairy MAX: Preparing for the Unpredictable

Issues and crises are unfortunate realities not localized to agriculture, a specific region, or even a country. The threat to dairy farming and the reputation of dairy is an ever-changing landscape; with this in mind, Dairy MAX recently expanded the Issues and Crisis Team to meet challenges head-on in the dairy sector. With combined experiences of 50+ years working in issues and crisis, the team works on enhancing, preparing, and strengthening its relationships with dairy farmers and professionals across the industry to protect dairy’s image.

“Dairy MAX is recognized as a leader in training and preparing farmers for potential crises; our expanded team will elevate this work in many different ways,” says Kay Johnson Smith, chief operating officer at Dairy MAX.

Dairy MAX will continue to prioritize crisis readiness and work together across the industry to ensure preparedness. Telling Your Story is the flagship communications training for dairy farmers and industry professionals in the Dairy MAX region. Participants work in small groups to enhance their communication skills and dive deeper into how communication in a crisis is different yet critical. Trainings are held several times a year for various groups offering storytelling techniques, suggestions for handling difficult questions, and tips for managing an on-camera interview.

More than 200 farmers and stakeholders have been trained through Telling Your Story. Upon completion, participants can confidently deliver messages about modern dairy practices and share dairy’s story in today’s changing media landscape.

Click here to read more about Dairy MAX expanding their Issues and Crisis Team

More Stories for Your Weekend Reading

Freeze Branding at The OSU Purebred Beef Center
Cole, Meeks, Bera Introduce the Countering Economic Coercion Act of 2023
CAB Insider: Cattle Contract Library Pilot Kicks Off
2023 cattlewomen’s camp registration now open
ARA Endorses FACA Farm Bill Policies
State departments of agriculture commend Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance farm bill recommendations
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mornings with cash and futures reviewed- includes where the Cash Cattle market stands, the latest Feeder Cattle Markets Etc.
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Wholesale Boxed Beef Prices were mixed- Choice Beef was unchanged and Select Beef was up $2.23 on Friday 11/20/2020.

Click on the Button below for the latest report from USDA Market News

Boxed Beef Report

Weekly Cattle Auction Reports

The buttons below allow you to check out the weekly Cattle Auctions in the region that we post on our website and here in our daily email update.

Oklahoma National Stockyards Market Report from 02/20/2023
Oklahoma National Stockyards Cow and Bull Market from Tuesday 02/21/2023
Joplin Regional Stockyards Market from Monday 02/20/2023
Tulsa Auction Report from Monday 02/20/2023
OKC West in El Reno Market Report from 02/21 and 02/22/2023
Woodward Livestock Market from Thursday 02/23/2023
Each afternoon we are posting a recap of that day's markets as analyzed by Justin Lewis of KIS futuresclick below for the latest update on the Livestock and Grain Futures Trade..
Click Here to Listen to Justin's Commentary From 02/23/2023
Okla Cash Grain:  
Daily Oklahoma Cash Grain Prices- as reported by the Oklahoma Dept. of Agriculture- The report available after the close of the Futures Trade for that day.
Read  Cash Grains Report from 02/23/2023
Our Daily Market Wrapup from the Radio Oklahoma Ag Network - analyzing the Futures Markets for that trading day- as reported by KC Sheperd.
Click to Listen to Our Weekday Wrap with KC
Slaughter Cattle Recap: 
The National Daily Slaughter Cattle Summary- as prepared by the USDA Market News
Read Report
TCFA Feedlot Recap:  
Finally, here is the Daily Volume and Price Summary from the Texas Cattle Feeders Association.
Read Report
Our Oklahoma Farm Report Team!!!!
Ron Hays, Senior Farm/Ranch Broadcaster and Editor
KC Sheperd, Farm Director and Editor

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Rural Oklahoma is full of some of the greatest success stories throughout the entire state and is a big reason why Oklahoma is on track to become a top 10 state. 

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The Road to Rural Prosperity is here to tell stories about rural America, for rural America.

Oklahoma Farm Report's Ron Hays talks regenerative agriculture and ranching with Jimmy Emmons. Jimmy is a long time resident of Leedey, OK. He is the third generation on the family farm in Dewey County. He and his wife Ginger have been farming and ranching together since 1980. They have a diverse 2000 acre cropping operation growing wheat, soybeans, sesame, sunflowers, irrigated dairy alfalfa hay, canola, grain sorghum and several cover crops for seed.
Jimmy has been monitoring soil health with soil testing since 2011 utilizing cover crops to enhance soil health.

Jimmy and Ginger also have a 250 cow/calf herd and take in yearling cattle for custom grazing on the nearly 6000 acres of native range. Ginger is the primary cattle manager in the operation. The Emmons’ utilize an adaptive multi-paddock grazing system on their range and forages grown on crop ground. They use the system to keep the native grasses and soils healthy, maximize biological diversity and optimize animal health.

As Jimmy Says- Long Live the Soil!

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To hear this podcast, you can click here or tap below:
Listen to Episode 84 with Ron Hays talking Soil Health in a time of Drought with Jimmy Emmons
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