~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday February 24, 2011A service of Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, Midwest Farm Shows and KIS Futures!
-- Rains Arriving in Southwest, Central and Northeastern Oklahoma
-- Cold, Drought Tolerant Sorghum Hybrids One Step Closer to Fields
-- Cattle Producers Get Premium Paychecks From Certified Angus Beef
-- New Lignin 'Lite' Switchgrass Boosts Biofuel Yield
-- in Rural Areas- Dust Happens, But NCBA Contends that EPA Doesn't Care
-- The Acre Scramble Continues
-- Express Ranches Getting Ready for Next Week's Spring Bull and Commercial Female Sale
-- 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 proud to have KIS Futures as a regular sponsor of our daily email update. KIS Futures provides Oklahoma Farmers & Ranchers with futures & options hedging services in the livestock and grain markets- Click here for the free market quote page they provide us for our website or call them at 1-800-256-2555.
We are also excited to have as one of our sponsors for the daily email
Producers Cooperative Oil Mill, with 64 years of progress through
producer ownership. Call Brandon Winters at 405-232-7555 for more
information on the oilseed crops they handle, including sunflowers and
canola- and remember they post closing market prices for canola and
sunflowers on the PCOM
website- go there by clicking here.
We invite you to listen to us on great radio stations across the
region on the Radio Oklahoma Network weekdays- if you missed this
morning's Farm News - or you are in an area where you can't hear it- click
here for this morning's Farm news from Ron Hays on RON.
Rains Arriving in Southwest, Central and Northeastern Oklahoma
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Northern Caddo and Payne Counties have Mesonet stations that have now recorded more than an inch of rain in the last twenty four hours. The band of rainshowers are running from the North Texas rolling plains across the Red River into the Altus to Frederick area- and then northeast up across Oklahoma and into northeastern parts of the state.
It appears a line of showers and storms will move from Ponca City to
Oklahoma City to Ardmore. There is the potential for heavy rain, strong
winds, and possibly some hail.
While the rains have been on the light side in southwestern Oklahoma- any moisture at this point is greatly welcomed by farmers who worry about enough moisture for his wheat as well as the winter canola acres that are in the ground.
Click on the LINK below for our weather page where you can tap into the weather wisdom of News9 with Gary England, News on 6 with Travis Meyer, the National Weather Service as well as the Oklahoma Mesonet.
Cold, Drought Tolerant Sorghum Hybrids One Step Closer to Fields
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Recent research funded by the Sorghum Checkoff is getting closer to finding cold and drought tolerant sorghum hybrids that could help increase sorghum yields in the future.
World Food Prize winner, Gebisa Ejeta of Purdue University, is working on a project to develop a commercialized cold tolerant sorghum hybrid. The objective of this project is to transfer cold tolerant genes from a Chinese cold tolerant line to selected sorghum inbred lines to create a hybrid that can germinate in cooler soil. This will give sorghum farmers a longer growing season and potentially increased yields.
Researchers have found two new genetic crosses that will be advanced
rapidly into early generations of what could be a commercialized cold
tolerant sorghum hybrid. All of the advanced generations from the summer
2010 research have been planted at the Puerto Rico winter nursery for the
"It is encouraging that we have identified the same specific region of
the chromosome as that of Dr. Ejeta's group to study cold tolerance in
sorghum," Burow said. "There is open communication between us and the
researchers at Purdue and we are sharing information to further our
Cattle Producers Get Premium Paychecks From Certified Angus Beef
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~There are currently more than 30 "Angus" branded beef programs monitored by the USDA, but the Certified Angus Beef brand is the only one owned by the American Angus Association and its members.
Since 1998, packers have paid producers more than $250 million in direct grid premiums related to CAB acceptance. Packers also have been the only source of funding for Certified Angus Beef LLC, paying only pennies per pound to use the CAB brand on carcasses meeting the specifications.
The premiums for cattle that are accepted into the CAB program are
impressive- on the average of $40 per head. If the animals grade Prime-
the premiums are even more significant.
New Lignin 'Lite' Switchgrass Boosts Biofuel Yield
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Bioethanol from new lines of native perennial prairie grass could become less costly because of plant engineering by The Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation and fermentation research at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.
In a paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers describe their transgenic version of switchgrass as one that produces about one-third more ethanol by fermentation than conventional switchgrass. This improved plant feedstock will be able to generate more biofuel per acre, benefiting not only the transportation sector but also the growers and farming community.
"Recalcitrance, or a plant's natural defenses against insects, fungus
and the weather, is widely acknowledged as being the single biggest
barrier to the production of biofuel and biochemicals from switchgrass and
other lignocellulosic materials," said Jonathan Mielenz, a co-author and
member of the Department of Energy lab's BioEnergy Science Center.
To achieve their goal, a team led by Zeng Yu Wang of The Samuel Roberts
Noble Foundation in Ardmore, Okla., chose to "downregulate" - a process
that involves decreasing a cellular component - the caffeic acid
3-O-methyltransferase, or COMT, gene - in the Alamo variety of
switchgrass. This change decreased the plant's structural "glue," lignin,
by about one-eighth. The scientists chose this gene based on encouraging
results of lignin modification from previous Noble research conducted in
alfalfa and other plant species.
in Rural Areas- Dust Happens, But NCBA Contends that EPA Doesn't Care
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) is concerned that the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) current review of National Ambient Air Quality Standards of the Clean Air Act could result in the regulation of coarse particulate matter (dust) at levels as low as 65-85 µg/m3, or twice as stringent as the current standard. In anticipation of a proposed rule on this issue, NCBA contracted with Dr. John Richards, Ph.D., P.E. of Air Quality Control Techniques to study the likely effects regulating dust at such stringent levels would have on attainment and nonattainment regions throughout the United States. The study concluded that moving forward with regulating dust at anticipated levels would bring vast areas of the United States into nonattainment or to the brink of nonattainment.
NCBA Chief Environmental Counsel Tamara Thies said the current standard
is 150 µg/m³ with an allowance of only one violation per year to remain in
compliance. However, she added that NCBA expects EPA to propose a new
standard of between 65-85 µg/m³ with an allowance of seven violations per
year to remain in compliance.
Specifically, the study concludes that EPA's expected revised standard would put some rural areas that are currently in attainment in the following states into nonattainment: Arizona; Colorado; Iowa; Missouri; Montana; Nebraska; New Mexico; Texas and Wyoming. In addition, areas that are currently in nonattainment in California, Nevada and Utah would stay in nonattainment. The study also concludes that many more areas would be brought to the brink of nonattainment.
The Acre Scramble Continues
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Dr. Daryll Ray of the University of Tennessee is one of the more influential ag policy specialists at Land Grant Universities around the country- and he offers an op-ed analysis on the status of which crops will be planted on how many acres.
He indicates that he was in Texas recently and was told by some farmers that they were moving at least some of their acres to cotton- with pressure from their bankers to do so- Ray says that it appeared that peanut acres were the likely casualty.
Dr. Ray adds "With spring planting just weeks to a couple of months away, depending on the part of the country, the competition among the crops for acres is under way. Each price, by itself, is a call for more acres. And that is fine when at least one crop price is relatively low; acres can flow out of the lower priced crop and into crops where the relative profitability is greater-well, cotton is probably not going to be grown in Minnesota, even at 200 cents a pound."
"At this point in 2011, the price of cotton, rice, soybeans, and wheat all look good, and, while they can't all be grown in every county, the scramble for acres is on. As farmers, we know that most acreage decisions are zero sum games-an acre increase for one crop is a one-acre decrease for another. As obvious as that near one-to-one substitution is to farm operators, it is a characteristic of agriculture that is not so obvious to most non-farmers. Those non-farmers believe, either consciously or unconsciously, that farmers utilize all their cropland when prices warrant and plant only a portion of their available cropland when they don't. That belief can lead to unrealistic expectations about adjustment of total acreages devoted to major crops when prices tank."
Express Ranches Getting Ready for Next Week's Spring Bull and Commercial Female Sale
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Express Ranches 17th Annual Spring Bull Sale & Commercial Female Sale is set for Friday March 4 and Saturday March 5, 2011 at the Ranch just north of Yukon, Oklahoma.
The schedule is spread over two days with Friday March 4 at 11 AM the time for 540 Angus Bulls to Sell.
On Saturday March 5th- the shift in focus on breeds begins at 12:00 p.m. with 94 Limousin Lim Flex Buls tol Sell.
At 2:00 p.m.- Express will offer 240 Registered & Commercial Angus Females.
From the catalog for the sale- Jarold Callahan and owner Bob Funk write "We greatly appreciate all of our past customers and our primary goal is to consistently strive to maintain your business. If this is the first time you have considered Express as a genetic source for your operation, you will hopefully agree we work hard to produce the best bulls possible, and back that up with the best service in the industry."
Click on the LINK below for more information and a chance to download their full catalog of this outstanding offering from Express Ranches.
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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 $9.30 per bushel, while the 2011 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $10.25 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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