~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Friday September 10, 2010A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Senate Ag Committee Members take Aim at EPA Over Multitude of Regs or Possible Regs Impacting Agriculture
-- Coburn Pushes Back on Food Safety Bill
-- OSU Grain Economist Kim Anderson Pleased With 2011 Wheat Crop Planting Progress
-- Beef Board Budget Approved
-- No Tax Vote Before November Elections
-- Another Letter From a Member of Congress to USDA- Study the Economic Consequences of the GIPSA Rule
-- Dairy Industry is 2% of the Carbon Footprint in the US
-- Let's Check the Markets!
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are pleased to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as a regular sponsor of our daily update- click here to go to their AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!
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Senate Ag Committee Members take Aim at EPA Over Multitude of Regs or Possible Regs Impacting Agriculture
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~One by one, members of the Senate Ag Committee took Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson to the woodshed Thursday over what Chairman Blanche Lincoln labeled vague, overreaching and unnecessarily burdensome EPA regulation of agriculture.
The agency has proposed a rule to reduce spray drift and considering one on dust, and is moving ahead with plans requiring Clean Water Act permits for applications of aquatic pesticides and on-farm oil spill prevention and control measures, and re-evaluating the safety of atrazine outside of normal procedures.
EPA's Jackson claims there is no intention of harming agriculture in any way- adding that she has no personal agenda of any sort against production agriculture.
Click on the LINK below to read more on the hearing- and to be able to listen to Lisa Jackson's opening statement to the Committee- who then verbally sparred with the Senators for over an hour.
Coburn Pushes Back on Food Safety Bill
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn has found himself at the center of a firestorm over food safety in this country- and after lots of criticism at a hearing on the egg recall of this summer- Senator Coburn went on the offensive- issued a statement and then went to the floor of the US Senate and defended his objections about the Food Safety Bill that Senator Harry Reid wants to push through. Coburn says that he wants a bill that is paid for through offsets- but he adds that he also wants to see a bill that will end the double responsibility that makes up our system today- two agencies with some responsibility for food safety- and often times blaming one another for a problem.
As Senator Coburn frequently does- he got down to the bottom line of the cost of the measure. "If the Majority Leader believes this legislation is a matter of life and death he should agree to advance a version that is paid for. I intend to give the Majority Leader such an opportunity this afternoon. With our national debt at $13.5 trillion and unemployment near 10 percent we can't tolerate the borrow-and-spend status quo any longer. It is nothing less than laziness and incompetence to argue that it is impossible to find $1.4 billion of waste in a $3.5 trillion to pay for this bill."
Click on the LINK below to read more- and to hear Senator Coburn's worry about two agencies- not talking to one another- trying to regulate the safety of America's food.
OSU Grain Economist Kim Anderson Pleased With 2011 Wheat Crop Planting Progress
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~OSU Grain Marketing Economist Dr. Kim Anderson believes that we will end up with a few more acres of wheat being planted this fall compared to a year ago- with many acres likely to be grazed if weather conditions allow those wheat fields to get up to a stand and have forage available.
He says that one of the positive things he has heard about this year's planting efforts is that producers seem to be putting more nitrogen fertilizer onto their fields- which could support higher yields- but more importantly, a better quality grain at harvest next June. Low protein levels have made it hard to move the Hard Red Winter Wheat Crop output of the last two years into marketing channels- and producers have had their ability to sell their grain impacted.
We have the audio of Kim Anderson talking with Austin Moore for Saturday's SUNUP TV Show- click on the LINK below and you can jump to our story and hear it before you see it. Besides the comments from Kim- we have the full lineup of this Satuday's SUNUP show that will be seen on OETA.
Beef Board Budget Approved
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Beef Promotion Operating Committee has approved investment of the Cattlemen's Beef Board Fiscal Year 2011 budget of 42.8-million dollars. These funds will support 42 national checkoff programs and associated costs. The approved plan of work funds promotion, research and information programs and is designed to build demand for beef using national checkoff funds.
The approved programs will provide about 18.1-million for promotion; nearly 6.7-million for research projects; more than 4.6-million for consumer information programs; about 3.3-million for industry information projects; more than 5.7-million for foreign marketing and education efforts about U.S. beef; and a total of about 1.7-million in Beef Board dollars for producer communications, which includes producer outreach using paid media, earned media and communications through livestock markets.
A separate 6.5-million dollars in allocations from the Federation of
State Beef Councils will further increase checkoff funding of national
programs in promotion, research, consumer information, industry
information and foreign marketing. The Operating Committee also reviewed
the CBB's program proposal for producer communications, which the Beef
Board staff manages in-house.
No Tax Vote Before November Elections
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Don't expect Senate Democrats to schedule a vote on extending the expiring 2001 and 2003 tax cuts before Congress leaves for the campaign trail. Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus is ready to introduce tax legislation but he says - people want to leave - by next week. Some Democrats are drawing a line between their call for an extension of tax cuts only for married couples making less than 250-thousand dollars and the Republican push to extend the Bush-era cuts for all taxpayers, including the wealthy.
Senator Tom Harkin agrees, there would be no vote on the tax cuts before the election. He says - there's nothing we can do about it right now. Dianne Feinstein says - I believe taking a vote on taxes right before the election is a mistake - the message can be manipulated. Meanwhile, Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin says - I can see the value in holding a pre-election vote, - but because of the short timetable, it makes it difficult.
This means that the Death tax will also not be dealt with before the November general elections- and it's looking more likely that the Congress will fail to act on this measure- instead allowing it to fall back to a one million dollar exemption and a 55% tax rate on everything above that.
Another Letter From a Member of Congress to USDA- Study the Economic Consequences of the GIPSA Rule
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) sent a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Sept. 22, 2010, to recommend a "comprehensive economic study" on USDA's Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration's (GIPSA)proposed rule on livestock marketing.
"Many uncertainties surround this proposed rule, which could result in both positive and negative effects on independent producers," said Sen. Grassley. "I believe a sound economic analysis conducted by the Office of the Chief Economist would be appropriate to answer producers' concerns about what affect these rules could have on their operations."
He said the analysis would be beneficial to both GIPSA and producers who are reviewing how these rules may change their bottom line. Sen. Grassley advised Secretary Vilsack to conduct the comprehensive economic study prior to the closing of the comment period on Nov. 22, 2010.
Dairy Industry is 2% of the Carbon Footprint in the US
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy commissioned the University of Arkansas' Applied Sustainability Center to conduct a fluid milk carbon footprint study. It is a life cycle assessment (LCA) that measured the greenhouse gas emissions created from the production of milk; from when crops are grown to feed cows all the way to the disposal of the milk carton by the consumer. One of its key findings is that the increased adoption of best management practices along the entire fluid milk supply chain can increase profitability while improving environmental sustainability.
The fluid milk carbon footprint study, the first of its kind for a U.S. agricultural product, was presented on September 22 at the International Food Life Cycle Assessment Conference. The study is the dairy industry's initial step in a comprehensive, science-based approach to measure and improve its carbon footprint. It will provide a scientific basis to identify research needs and enable the industry to identify and measure management practices and technologies that are most effective in increasing productivity and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Together with data from additional studies, the carbon footprint study indicates that total U.S. dairy greenhouse gas emissions are approximately 2 percent of total U.S. emissions.
Click on the LINK below to jump to the Dairy Sustainability website for more information about the U.S. fluid milk carbon footprint study.
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Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We've had requests to include Canola prices for your convenience here- and we will be doing so on a regular basis. Current cash price for Canola is $8.45 per bushel- as of the close of business yesterday, while the 2011 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $9.05 per bushel- delivered to local participating elevators that are working with PCOM.
Here are some links we will leave in place on an ongoing basis- Click
on the name of the report to go to that link:
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