~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Monday November 15, 2010A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Huge Rain For the 2011 Wheat (and Canola) Crops
-- Hot Checks Written by Eastern Livestock LLC Closing in on $100 Million
-- Lame Duck Has Arrived- We Try to Listen to Mary Kay Over the Quacking
-- NCBA Chief Economist Gregg Doud Says Even with Failed Talks- Glass is Half Full with Koreans on Beef
-- Stirring the Poultry Issue in Eastern Oklahoma
-- National Pork Board Meets This Week
-- State Representative John Enns Campaigns for Farm Safety
-- 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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Huge Rain For the 2011 Wheat (and Canola) Crops
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The northwestern half of Oklahoma saw a great rain sweep that part of the state on Thursday night and Friday, with rainfall totals of one to two inches very common. Jackson County and east along the Red River got very little moisture- but those counties were among the few locations in the Oklahoma wheat belt that got disappointing amounts of rain.
The rains have arrived just in time for many wheat fields planted into little or no precipitation. The hope now is that both wheat and canola will use the rain to help establish a good root system as we wait on winter to arrive in another few weeks.
We pointed you to the ag portion of the Mesonet this past Friday- and got a nice email from Al Sutherland about one of the new enhancements that you will see everytime you go there looking for rainfall information. Al tells us that "One change we recently made was going to non-plugin rainfall maps on the Mesonet.org and Agweather.mesonet.org websites. Why did we do this? The new rainfall maps have Mesonet data and radar adjusted rainfall amounts from the National Weather Service's River Forecast Center. The old version contoured the rainfall colors by interpolation between Mesonet sites. The new rainfall and radar maps show a more accurate picture of rainfall across the state.
While the southeastern portions of the state got little precipitation from this last go- round- the higher chances of rain for this evening are in southeastern Oklahoma- from 60% to 80% in places like Atoka and McAlester. Places like Altus and Frederick are less likely to get rain- their POPs are thirty to forty percent.
Hot Checks Written by Eastern Livestock LLC Closing in on $100 Million
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~A New Albany, Indiana cattle company allegedly owing more than $94 million in unpaid livestock transactions is being investigated by federal authorities. As of Friday afternoon, the word from USDA is that they were requesting a restraining order that would halt operations of the cattle buying operation.
Eastern Livestock Co., LLC, which has headquarters in New Albany, Indiana(which is right across the Ohio River from Louisville, Ky), is described on its website as one of the largest cattle brokerage companies in the United States.
A little over a week ago, Eastern Livestock began issuing unfunded
checks to producers for livestock purchased by Eastern. Numerous checks
written by Eastern started being returned as "Refer to Maker" and later as
"Insufficient Funds," according to the Livestock Marketing Association.
By Friday of this past week, that figure had grown to $130 million in
unpaid bills. The USDA said the $130 million included $81 million in
checks returned by banks.
Lame Duck Has Arrived- We Try to Listen to Mary Kay Over the Quacking
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The American Farm Bureau is calling on President Obama to work with Congress in the Lame Duck Session to move on estate tax relief, preserving capital gains tax breaks and extending other important tax provisions.
However, AFBF Policy Specialist Mary Kay Thatcher believes that the Democratic leadership will only provide a few months of tax relief in extending the end of life of the so called Bush tax cuts by perhaps six months. She also sees some temporary fix for a few months on the so called Death Tax, which currently stands at zero, but is set to return with a relatively small one million dollar exemption and a tax of 55% on all value above that. We talked with Mary Kay about all of these lame duck issues and more this past week while in Kansas City for the 2010 National Association of Farm Broadcasters annual meeting.
Meanwhile- AFBF President Bob Stallman wrote President Obama a letter asking him to step up and help Congress get some positive things done between now and the end of the year. You can read more about that letter- as well as hear our conversation with Mary Kay by clicking on the LINK below.
NCBA Chief Economist Gregg Doud Says Even with Failed Talks- Glass is Half Full with Koreans on Beef
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Chief Economist of the National Cattlemen's Beef Association, Greg Doud, is hopeful that the Obama Administration will figure out a way to revive stalled talks with South Korea- and get a Free Trade Deal that was first negotiated by the Bush Administration back on track.
This past week, talks that seemed to hold a lot of promise failed to deliver on a revised deal that would suit both sides. Doud was hopeful as those talks were held that we could get the clock ticking on reducing tariffs on US Beef that currently stand at 40%. The FTA was expected to reduce that tariff to zero over a fifteen year period.
Still, there are a lot of positives when it comes to US Beef exports into that part of the world- both into South Korea as well as into Japan. Click on the LINK below and get our Monday Beef Buzz with Gregg Doud- as heard on many of the Radio Oklahoma Network stations. Of course, we have this Beef Buzz and many of our previous shows up on line on our website- click on the Beef Buzz button on the left hand side of any page on our website.
Stirring the Poultry Issue in Eastern Oklahoma
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The group known as STIR- Save the Illinois River- is touting a study released earlier in November at the annual meeting of the North American Lake Management Society that was held in Oklahoma City. It was not a local set of researchers who did the work, but rather a group of University of Washington grad students in Civil Engineering that did a case study on the testimony offered by the defense in the lawsuit brought by Oklahoma AG Drew Edmondson against the poultry companies in northwest Arkansas that contract with growers in northeastern Oklahoma to raise chickens for them.
It appears that the students studied the testimony to come to their conclusions that the expert witnesses that appeared in Federal court got it wrong. In a story on the STIR website, ""Based on our findings, we conclude the defense experts made a series of claims that are not supported by the modern limnological literature and the weight of the evidence strongly suggests poultry litter disposal as the most likely cause of eutrophication of TKR (Tenkiller Reservoir)."
Click on the LINK below to read the rest of the story offered on this review of the testimony from earlier this year in the Edmondson Poultry Lawsuit that claims the analysis done in the watershed was wrong.
National Pork Board Meets This Week
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The National Pork Board will met this week, beginning Tuesday, to focus on streamlining the organization's producer-led committee structure. The board's three day meeting will be held in Des Moines, Iowa. On Wednesday, the board will receive a report from a task force it appointed last spring to study its committee structure. The National Pork Board now has 11 pork producer-led committees that it relies on for guidance on issues ranging from product marketing to the environment to animal health and food safety.
The task force will recommend that the board trim the number of committees to eight by combining two committees that focus on producer services, education and communications and two others that focus on nutrition and pork safety. It also is recommending that a committee focused on niche marketing become a subcommittee of the merged producer group and that the board assure that producers who specialize in providing products for niche markets be included on all board committees.
The President of the National Pork Board has ties to Oklahoma's swine industry. Dr. Gene Nemechek of Springdale, Ark., is a swine quality assurance veterinarian with the live swine division of the Tyson Pork Group, Inc. for Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc. Dr. Nemechek has a shared responsibility to work with the Tyson pork production units in Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Missouri as well as customer quality assurance for the Tyson Pork Group weaned pig and feeder pig customers. In addition, Wathina Luthi of Gage is a member of the board that oversees the national pork checkoff.
State Representative John Enns Campaigns for Farm Safety
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~News9 Reporter Jacqueline Sit went to Enid and did a story at the end of this last week on an effort by State Lawmaker John Enns- who hopes to make sure that what happened to him does not happen to someone else.
State Representative and farmer John Enns nearly lost his life in 2004
when his tractor rolled over breaking his back in three places. He was
told he would never walk again.
Click on the LINK below to read more on this story and see the video as well of this farm safety message reminder for everyone out on the farm and ranch. As Rep. Enns said so well- it only takes seconds for your life to change- or to end.
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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 $9.10 per bushel- as of the close of business yesterday, while the 2011 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $9.80 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
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