~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Thursday June 14, 2007!A service of Midwest Farm Shows
-- Harvest approaches the Half Done Mark at Multiple Locations- but Rain Arrives to Halt Progress.
-- Japan Comes Away Happy with Audits of our Beef Plants- Says they will stop inspecting every box of beef from the United States.
-- Best wheat prices in over a decade- Kansas City leads the way higher.
-- House Ag Committee Moves On- Senate Ag Committee Falling Behind.
-- There will be a horse race within Oklahoma Farm Bureau this November- Mike Spradling will run for President.
-- Cattle Dispersal Sale of some great females coming June 23rd.
-- Wildfire Protection Grant Application Deadline Draws Near...
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. Our email this morning is a service of Midwest Farm Shows, featuring the recently concluded Southern Plains Farm Show in Oklahoma City, as well as the Tulsa Farm Show held each December. Check out details of both of these exciting shows at the official website of Midwest Farm Shows by clicking here.
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Harvest approaches the Half Done Mark at Multiple Locations- but Rain Arrives to Halt Progress.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~A slow moving Low Pressure System has moved into Oklahoma- and she dumped a lot of rain on a pretty wide area stretching from Erick and Hobart in the southwest up to Vinita in the northeast. Biggest amounts we noticed yesterday and early this morning would include Hobart in Kiowa County with more than four inches of rain(just since Midnight) and Watonga in Blaine County with almost four inches of rain yesterday and this morning. These rains are widespread enough to stop virtually all harvest efforts in the body of the state- although farmers in the Panhandle that have ripe wheat are starting to roll the combines- and the reports from there seem to indicate good yields and quality. Big problem is that the rains will continue today- there is an 80% percent chance of precipitation across a lot of our Oklahoma wheat belt.
We got a quick report from McClain County- just the yield- but it turned out well for these folks at 40 bushels per acre. I told this farm wife that will likely be a yield to brag on here in 2007.
Another report comes from Rocky- where a farm couple writes "We have something over 1000 acres of wheat this year that we have been trying to harvest. Our expectations have been dashed pretty hard, as a lot of our wheat looked like it should have yielded 40- 50 bushels, but it has only done 20-25 with an occasional field that yields around thirty. However, we've got 40- 50 bushels straw on a lot of it, for whatever that's worth! It has been very strange to notice that the wheat that was beautiful is only yielding slightly more than the fields that look pretty sorry. Our test weights, up until this last rain have been between 58 and 60 pounds. Last year we never put a combine in the field, our crop was a complete loss, so I guess we're better off this way, but by now we're so far in the hole" and I will let you fill in the rest of the story. Hopefully this farm family will receive a little of that farm disaster aid that was passed a week or so ago- to help a little in getting out of that financial hole. We continue to have reports as we get them during the day on our website's front page- and we have an audio wrapup for the morning that you can go and listen to as well. Click below and check it out.
Japan Comes Away Happy with Audits of our Beef Plants- Says they will stop inspecting every box of beef from the United States.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~In today's Beef Buzz on the Radio Oklahoma Network, NCBA Chief Economist Gregg Doud joins us- offering two thumbs up to the word from Tokyo that the Japanese government is going to stop slowing down the speed of commerce by inspecting every box of beef coming in from America.
Doud believes that this move will allow a lot more beef to be able to enter the Japanese market, simply by no longer restricting the pipeline down from the size of a fire hose to that of a drinking straw. In addition, Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns issued a statement pointing to progress in Japan, in South Korea (in recent days) and also word from Malaysia that they will follow the OIE guidelines and accept all US beef with specified risk materials removed as dictated by the Controlled Risk status afforded the US beef industry by the OIE.
You can hear today's Beef Buzz by following the link below- it will take you straight to our website's Beef Buzz page- simply scroll down to the bottom of the list of programs and you will find the one with today's date. Click on that link and you'll hear Ron and Gregg on this welcome word from the Japanese.
Best wheat prices in over a decade- Kansas City leads the way higher.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It's a combination of fundamentals as well as the technicals that have pushed Kansas City wheat futures hard- they are now UP 70 cents per bushel since last Friday, basis the Kansas City July contract. Sellers tried to take this market lower early on Wednesday- figured out that this train was rolling and they were gonna get run over and got out of the way!
Harvest delays drove the market yesterday- and concerns about the quantity and quality of the crop are clearly being focused on now by the trade- both in Oklahoma as well as south Central Kansas. We had a report yesterday from a wheat producer just north of Wellington, Kansas(that's in what is often the biggest wheat producing county in Kansas- Sumner County) that this is the worst he has seen it in forty years- he calls it a perfect storm of problems- Freeze, Leaf Rust, Armyworms and Harvest time rains that is slamming hopes for even an average harvest.
It's not just Oklahoma and Kansas woes that are capturing the attention of wheat market bulls. There is severe drought in the Ukraine and Russia- it's also dry in China, western Australia and even Argentina. The market is clearly nervous about production prospects- even as wheat supplies are historically tight.
These higher futures prices translate into a higher Gulf bid- and higher grain elevator bids here in Oklahoma. Current number one wheat bids by local elevators stand at $5.33 to $5.64. While there won't a be a lot of wheat good enough from a test weight perspective to fetch the number one class price- prices appear to look pretty good for even feed wheat here in 2007.
House Ag Committee Moves On- Senate Ag Committee Falling Behind.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~It could be the end of 2007 before Congress completes a new farm bill and presents it to the President for his signature. House Ag Committee Chairman Collin Peterson is aiming to finish his committee's work by the end of June. Their document would be ready for floor debate in early July. But on the other side of Congress - one prominent lobbyist predicts it will be December 23rd before work is completed.
Part of the problem - according to Senate Ag Committee Chairman Tom Harkin - is that he is having problems getting numbers back from the Congressional Budget Office - and has been unable to get clearance for using reserve funds. Both chairs indicate some common themes are beginning to emerge - despite some wild cards such as funding - or the lack there of - and the potential for substantial changes on the House floor from folks like Representative Ron Kind of Wisconsin. Kind's measure has been nicknamed Farm21- and it will be a strong challenger to the Committee bill on the floor when it comes up for floor debate- probably the week of July 21st.
Today, another of the House Ag Subcommittees will be working- this time on language related to the nutrition and forestry programs. Next Tuesday, the General Farm Commodities Subcommittee will attempt to mark up the Commodity Title of the House Ag Committee Farm Bill- and we should have details on what Chairman Peterson really wants in farm policy by Monday when an outline of the proposal will likely hit the House Ag Committee's web site.
There will be a horse race within Oklahoma Farm Bureau this November- Mike Spradling will run for President.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~While it was widely expected that Tulsa County Farm Bureau member Mike Spradling would seek the Presidency of the state's largest general farm group- Mike had indicated to me verbally earlier in 2007 that he was likely to run- it's now a little more "official" in that, like Bob Drake of Davis, Spradling has sent a letter out to many members within the Farm Bureau family, announcing that after giving it serious thought, he has decided to seek the office of President of the Oklahoma Farm Bureau.
We were provided a copy of the letter- and it provides an overview of Spradling's involvement with the group- starting with being named a board member in Tulsa County back in 1973. In the 1970s, Spradling was an Oklahoma Discussion Meet winner and represented Oklahoma at the national contest. For the past seven years, he has served as a board member of the Oklahoma Farm Bureau for District Nine- and has served as both Treasurer and Vice President of the organization and affiliated companies.
Mike says that he is asking for the opportunity to represent grass
roots members of the OFB as State President and it appears a possible
campaign slogan that was mentioned in the letter that will be carried
forward is "Your Involvement Makes a Difference."
Cattle Dispersal Sale of some great females coming June 23rd.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Paw Paw Creek is well known in the Club Calf marketplace- but all good things must come to an end- and George McCreary has decided to disperse the herd and move on to enjoy life. There will be a complete dispersion of the herd- including an excellent offering of fall bred cows and heifers, open heifers and several spring cow calf pairs.
For more information on this sale- we have linked to the website from Collins Cattle Services that has this information- or you can call Christy Collins at 1-800- 975-6313 OR 580-335-3000. The sale is planned for June 23rd at the Ranch just outside Vinita.
Wildfire Protection Grant Application Deadline Draws Near...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Many Oklahoma communities are not adequately protected from wildfires but a federally funded grant program may be able to improve their preparedness, according to State Forester, John Burwell. "We are offering 28 community grants of up to $7,500 each to help develop Community Wildfire Protection Plans in the areas at greatest risk," he said. "These plans are fairly in-depth and involve numerous steps and many communities don't feel they have the staffing to complete them. The grant funds can be used to contract this work in those cases."
Having a CWPP is important for communities at risk because only then are they eligible for taking advantage of U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management funds available to help with projects such as fuel reduction and other hazard mitigation efforts. Burwell said plans might address numerous issues including wildfire response, community preparedness and structure protection.
Deadline for applications is July 1. Application forms may be requested from Resource Protection Staff Forester, Steve Mattax at (405) 522-8889. He will be glad to help you with any questions that you might have as well.
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